Japan's mixi adds mobile support with its OpenSocial RESTful API

Monday, July 27, 2009 | 8:44 PM

Hello, my name is Hidetaka Yamashita, and I am in charge of mixi's OpenSocial Mobile project. I am very happy to announce that mixi has recently added support for mobile phones to our OpenSocial platform. mixi.jp is currently the most popular Japanese social networking service (SNS) and has more than 17 million registered users. You may have heard about our recently launched OpenSocial developer sandbox in April. With this announcement, we are introducing our "mixi apps for mobile" platform which is based on OpenSocial's RESTful API using 2-legged OAuth.

Background

In Japan most people use 3G mobile phones that connect to the Internet at max 7.2Mbps. Currently, more people access the web through mobile phones than through PCs. In mixi's case, access from PCs is approximately 30% compared to mobile phone access, which is 70%. Therefore, it is crucial for mixi to offer mobile phone support for OpenSocial applications.

How mixi's mobile platform works

mixi's mobile development platform is targeted for non-native mobile development, where third party developers build mobile social apps on their own application servers. However, when accessing the application from a mobile phone, users still point their phones to the main mixi site as it serves mainly as a proxy to the third party site. As the response returns from the third party site, the mixi Application Proxy processes the response (which is purely content) and merges it into a complete XHTML response (by adding a header and footer). It is then passed back to the requesting mobile phone. Since the core application itself resides on a third party site, developers build their apps using the RESTful API with 2-legged OAuth to securely access social data from mixi.


With mixi's RESTful API with 2-legged OAuth, OpenSocial applications can run anytime, anywhere!

Supported Features

API (requires authentication using 2-legged OAuth). You can access all the core OpenSocial APIs, as well as photos and communities on mixi.

Timeline (for mobile)
  • Closed beta version - Ongoing now
  • Consumer launch - September 2009
  • Official ads program - September 2009
  • Virtual currency and Payment API - October 2009
To learn more about mixi's new OpenSocial mobile platform please visit: http://developer.mixi.co.jp/. (Note: this site is in Japanese.)



(This post originally appeared on the OpenSocial blog.)

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