A Novel Method for the Development of Personalized Mobile Tourist Applications

M. Kenteris, D.Gavalas, and D. Economou (Greece)


Tourist application, mobile devices, J2ME, XML


The use of mobile devices as electronic tourist guides represents a recent trend that brings the concept of ‘mobile tourism’ into the spotlight. While much of the underlying technology is already available, there are still open challenges with respect to design, usability, portability and implementation aspects. Most existing ‘mobile tourism’ solutions either represent of-the-shelf applications with rigidly defined content or involve portable devices with networking capabilities that browse tourist mobile portals with the requirement of constant airtime, i.e. continuous wireless network coverage. This paper presents a ‘mobile tourism’ research prototype which brings together the main assets of the two abovementioned approaches. Namely, it enables the creation of portable tourist applications with rich content that matches user preferences. The users may download these customizable applications either directly to their mobile device or first to a PC and then to a mobile terminal (through infrared or bluetooth). Thereafter, network coverage is not further required as the applications execute in standalone mode and may be updated when the user returns online. Our prototype has been developed on the top of Java 2 Micro Edition which offers an ideal platform for the development of full fledged, interactive and portable applications tailored to resource-constrained mobile devices.

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