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Posts in category 'Mobile phone'

25 October 2012

How the Kenyan Base of the Pyramid uses their mobile phone

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In order to understand mobile phone usage at the Base of the Pyramid (BoP) in Kenya, iHub Research and Research Solutions Africa conducted a 6-month study, funded by infoDev (World Bank).

A total of 796 face-to-face interviews were conducted along with 178 diaries, 9 interviews with Kenyan developers, 12 focus group discussions (FGDs), and 10 interviews with key stakeholders in the industry. The full report will be released to the public in November 2012.

The following were key findings from the study:
– 16% of Kenyans at the BoP use Internet on their mobile phone
– Low awareness of other existing mobile applications
– Health and education Information most desired
– 1 in 5 forgo an expenditure to buy credit
– Calling, SMS, Mobile Money Transfer are the major uses
– No difference in mobile phone usage between men and women other than mobile Internet usage, which is dominated by educated male youth
– Higher likelihood of technology usage by those educated past primary level

22 October 2012

Smartphone ethnography apps

 

The Qualitative Report website contains a very hard to find but highly recommended page on smartphone ethnography apps (or, as they call it, “Mobile and Cloud Qualitative Research Apps”).

Some highlights:

myServiceFellow
Mobile ethnography for (tourism-specific) service design via customer structured research based on perceived service sequence and service components importance through journey mapping and touchpoints sequences
(More info also here)

Ethos – Ethnographic observation system
Both a mobile device application for conducting fieldwork and a link to a web-based project management system

Revelation
Mobile device app seamlessly integrates with Revelation Project, making it simple to add mobile projects into larger studies

Ethnocorder
Multimedia enabled field research with over 20 types of multimedia elements that can be used in either questions or responses

myResearch
Field market research application for capturing live point-in-time feedback from respondents using video, audio, image recording and quantitative data

Over The Shoulder
Allows users to answer questions and provide opinions for research purposes with in-the-moment ideas, photos, videos and innovation inspiration

MyInsights
Conduct qualitative research connected to a closed web environment, where projects can be created, participants and observers can be invited and where you can view and download the results

16 October 2012

Creating behaviour change in people using mobile technology

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Rajeev Suri posted a short interview with Gustav Praekelt of Praekelt Consulting and the Praekelt Foundation, who focuses on creating behaviour change in people – particularly in emerging markets – using mobile technology.

In the interview he explains the notions of Computational Social Science, Influence and Susceptibility of an individual in a network, building on the work of behavioral scientist Sinan Aral at MIT. He also talks about the social community they built called YoungAfricaLive.

6 October 2012

Making mobile phones work for the poor

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In this BBC article, David Edelstein, a leader in the mobile for development space, argues that human networks are the essential ingredient for mobile phones to improve the lives of the poorest.

“Focusing on the technology betrays a truth that must be understood if we are to get beyond this hype and harness the true potential of mobile. To truly make a difference to the lives of the world’s poor, I believe that we must complement the existing mobile networks with well structured human networks.

What do I mean by a human network? To understand what they are and the impact they can have, our network of more than 850 Community Knowledge Workers (CKWs) in Uganda offers a good example.”

Read article

2 October 2012

Anthropological study by Google on our magic relationship with mobile devices

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What is the emotional relationship people truly have with the mobile space and how they make meaning there? To answer this, Google conducted an anthropological study to gain a better understanding of how people feel about, relate to and find meaning in the mobile space, and how brands can engage their consumers in more emotionally resonant and impactful ways.

“We hired an anthropologist to interview dozens of ordinary mobile device owners and observe them as they interacted with their smartphones. The first thing we found is that the phone’s pocket size is anything but a flaw — in fact, it’s the key to understanding what it really means.

Anthropology teaches us that in every culture, miniatures possess the power to unlock imaginations. Whether it’s a dollhouse, toy truck, or some other tiny talisman, miniatures look and feel real, but their size gives us the permission to suspend disbelief, daydream, and play. Remember The Nutcracker? In between pirouettes, a toy nutcracker comes to life, defeats an evil mouse, and whisks the heroine away to a magical kingdom. That, in a nutshell, is the story we implicitly tell ourselves about our miniature computers — one of youth, freedom, and possessing the key to a much larger world.

“Because it’s in my pocket I somehow squeeze this time in for various things — and only because I think it just sits in my pocket,” one of our subjects told us.

The screens may be small, but they serve as gateways to the gigantic. We see this power manifest in insights gleaned from the anthropologist’s observations. Our mobile devices help us fully actualize our best self, or what we call the Quicksilver Self; they engage us to create a shared culture, the New Tribalism; and they help us to make sense of the physical world around us, an act we describe as Placemaking. Understanding the deeper levels at which individuals, customers, are finding meaning in mobile will enable marketers to put this powerful medium to its best use.”

Report by Think With Google

28 September 2012

How cultural differences affect mobile use

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CNN reports on mobile phone culture and how use differs starkly across cultures.

Whereas the article is rather superficial, the “open mic” videos from New York and Nairobi and the photo gallery are recommended.

26 September 2012

Designing for Mobile, Part 1: Information Architecture

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Mobile devices come with a whole host of new constraints (and opportunities) for our designs.

In this – the first part of her series on mobile design – Elaine McVicar explores a handfull of the most popular architectures for mobile websites and applications.

7 September 2012

Service design in tourism

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SDT2012 was the first international conference on service design thinking in the travel and tourism industry. For the first time, the conference brought together a community interested in the practical application of service design thinking within the travel and tourism industry.

The conference was the closing event of the project “Service Design in Tourism” funded by the European Union under the CIP Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme, and hosted by MCI – Management Center Innsbruck, Department of Tourism.

A free 142 page e-book with Case studies of applied research projects on mobile ethnography for tourism destinations.

Abstract

Tourism becomes more and more transparent through social media and tourism review websites. Nowadays, it’s the individual guest’s experience that makes or breaks the success of a tourism product. Thus, the focus in tourism shifts from mere marketing communications to meaningful experiences. Service design thinking can provide an in-depth and holistic understanding of customers required to cocreate meaningful experiences with guests.

The book provides an introduction into service design and tourism and presents seven case studies of European tourism destinations, which used the app myServiceFellow as a mobile ethnography research tool to gain genuine customer insights. The book reports lessons learned of these case studies, gives managerial implications and an outlook on future research fields for service design in tourism.

“Service Design and Tourism” is the written outcome of the research project “Service design as an approach to foster competitiveness and sustainability of European tourism” funded by the European Union under the CIP Competitiveness and Innovation Program.

6 September 2012

Marko Ahtisaari, “Nokia’s visionary,” wants to “out-design Apple”

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Marko Athisaari, Nokia’s head of design, is pushing a general overall vision where advanced function is blended into unforgettable form¿post-industrial form. The dream, if not the exact language, is very familiar. Nokia is marketing its phone directly into the teeth of Apple’s strength: Design.

He talks a great game, and fondles an impressive product. But certainly Ahtisaari knows that by focusing on design, he is taking on the lofty emperors of design at Apple. And it can’t be lost on him that just as Apple is the world’s wealthiest company, Nokia is struggling for its life. But if Ahtisaari is intimidated, he’s not showing it. Asked about Apple, he says, “The best way you can show respect for competition is to do something meaningfully better.” And if all else fails, there’s always that hole in the ice.

Feature on Wired

6 September 2012

Intel annual ‘Mobile Etiquette’ study examines online sharing behaviors around the world

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According to a recent multi-country study commissioned by Intel Corporation and conducted by Ipsos Observer on “Mobile Etiquette,” the majority of adults and teens around the world are sharing information about themselves online and feel better connected to family and friends because of it. However, the survey also revealed a perception of “oversharing,” with at least six out of 10 adults and teens saying they believe other people divulge too much information about themselves online, with Japan being the only exception.

Intel’s 2012 “Mobile Etiquette” survey examined the current state of mobile etiquette and evaluated how adults and teens in eight countries share and consume information online, as well as how digital sharing impacts culture and relationships. The research was conducted in the United States in March and a follow-up study was conducted in Australia, Brazil, China (adults only), France, India, Indonesia and Japan from June to August.

“In today’s society, our mobile technology is making digital sharing ubiquitous with our everyday activities, as evidenced by the findings from Intel’s latest ‘Mobile Etiquette’ survey,” said Dr. Genevieve Bell, Intel Fellow and director of user interaction and experience at Intel Labs. “What is most interesting is not necessarily how widespread our use of mobile technology has become, but how similar our reasons are for sharing, regardless of region or culture. The ability to use mobile devices to easily share information about our lives is creating a sense of connection across borders that we’re continuing to see flourish.”

Press release
Article by The Register
Interactive data visualization

6 September 2012

Consumers say no to mobile apps that grab too much data

PewInternet

A study by the Pew Research Center, released Wednesday, found that among Americans adults who use smartphone apps, half had decided not to install applications on their mobile phones because they demanded too much personal information. Nearly a third uninstalled an application after learning that it was collecting personal information “they didn’t wish to share.” And one in five turned off location tracking “because they were concerned that other individuals or companies could access that information.” A customer’s whereabouts can be extremely valuable to marketers trying to sell their wares, or government authorities trying to keep tabs on citizens’ movements.

The study seems to suggest a deepening awareness of digital privacy. And it contradicts a common perception that the generation of young Americans who have grown up in the Internet age blithely share their personal details.

Read article

4 September 2012

Ericsson on evolving TV and video-consumption habits

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Ericsson is publishing interesting research these days (and therefore gets featured on this blog).

Its latest TV and video ConsumerLab report found that mobile devices are an important part of the TV experience, with 67 percent using tablets, smartphones or laptops for their everyday TV viewing.

New technology and services have also empowered us to interact socially with our friends as we watch our favorite content. Today, live sports commentary among mates is huge. The same ConsumerLab report found that 62 percent of consumers use social media while watching TV. This is up 18 percent from last year.

4 September 2012

Africa embracing m-commerce

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In a new report from its ConsumerLab, Ericsson maps out the potential of transformation within m-commerce across the region of sub-Saharan Africa.

Based on in-depth, extensive interviews with mobile phone users in Ghana, South Africa, and Tanzania, the report has four key findings: that consumers are constantly looking for new ways to improve their personal budgets; the speed and convenience of m-commerce points to great potential in the market; current behaviors and social structures indicate that the use of mobile payment services will expand; and that consumers need more information about the functionality and security of m-commerce transactions.

Consumers tell Ericsson researchers that they use mobile payment services for person-to-person transfers and purchasing airtime on their mobile subscriptions, and that they like the convenience of accessing money everywhere and at anytime, regardless of service hours. In Tanzania, for example, 38% of subscribers send money person-to-person over the mobile phone.

Another conclusion of the report is that people who use m-commerce keep little separation between private and business accounts.

Experience leads to greater trust, and the report finds that 44% of non-users of m-commerce are very worried about the integrity of their account information in case of theft or loss of their phones.

Press release
Media kit

24 July 2012

mHealth: the next frontier or too much hype?

 

mHealth: The Next Frontier For Mobile Service Growth
By Scott Wilson and Phil Asmundson of Deloitte
Advances in wireless remote patient monitoring (RPM) are expected to have a big impact across targeted disease areas where chronic conditions are a leading cause of the readmissions problem. RPM can equip healthcare providers with timely information about patients’ health, while improving speed and accuracy of diagnosis. Wearable body sensors and remote monitoring can keep chronic patients out of hospitals and improve their quality of life while significantly reducing admission expenses.

Too Much Hype in the Mobile Health App World?
By journalist Barbara Ficarra
Aside from safety concerns, there are “two problems with health apps,” said Joseph C. Kvedar, M.D., founder and director at the Center for Connected Health in a recent interview. First, after downloading the app, it may be used once or twice and then it’s forgotten, he said. “There’s no engagement.” Secondly, health apps can be prone to error because the data that is self-entered by consumers may not be true. It’s a “social diversity bias problem,” he said, because the data entered isn’t honest and there is no meaningful engagement to help change consumers behavior. After downloading health apps with enthusiasm, the “shiny new toy isn’t so shiny anymore,” because there’s “lack of interest and lack of engagement,” said Kvedar.

16 July 2012

That’s not my phone. That’s my tracker.

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Peter Maass and Megha Rajagopalan argue in the New York Times Sunday Review that the device in your purse or jeans that you think is a cellphone, is in fact a tracking device that happens to make calls.

“We have all heard about the wonders of frictionless sharing, whereby social networks automatically let our friends know what we are reading or listening to, but what we hear less about is frictionless surveillance. Though we invite some tracking — think of our mapping requests as we try to find a restaurant in a strange part of town — much of it is done without our awareness.” [...]

“People could call them trackers. It’s a neutral term, because it covers positive activities — monitoring appointments, bank balances, friends — and problematic ones, like the government and advertisers watching us.

We can love or hate these devices — or love and hate them — but it would make sense to call them what they are so we can fully understand what they do.”

Read article

6 July 2012

Digital devices as embodied experiences in remote Indian village

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In arguing that digital technologies enable embodied experiences that reshape the very ways in which we conceptualize our everyday life, Nishant Shah, founder and Director of Research for the Bangalore-based Centre for Internet and Society, tells us a story from the village of Banni in the desert region of Kutch, located at the North-Western borders of India and Pakistan.

“In this small village that is about 80 kilometers from the biggest town with amenities like hospitals and schools, almost every household has a smart phone with access to the internet. In the absence of more popular forms like radio, which are disallowed because of the proximity to the turbulent India-Pakistan borders, the Chinese-made smart phones become the de facto interface of communication and cultural production. The phones become not only the life-line in times of crises, but also everyday objects through which the villages stay connected with the world of cultural production and entertainment. The internet services on the phones allow them to access Bollywood songs and movies, images and games, popular television programming and other popular cultural products in the country. In many ways, Banni is probably more digitally connected than many parts of the larger cities in the country.”

Read article

10 June 2012

Book: The Mobile Frontier

mobilefrontier

The Mobile Frontier – A Guide for Designing Mobile Experiences
By Rachel Hinman
Rosenfeld Media
June 2012
Publisher’s page | Amazon page

Mobile user experience is a new frontier. Untethered from a keyboard and mouse, this rich design space is lush with opportunity to invent new and more human ways for people to interact with information. Invention requires casting off many anchors and conventions inherited from the last 50 years of computer science and traditional design and jumping head first into a new and unfamiliar design space.

The Mobile Frontier will assist in navigating the unfamiliar and fast-changing mobile landscape with grace and solid thinking while inspiring you to explore the possibilities mobile technology presents.

> Excerpt from the book on UX Magazine

2 June 2012

MA thesis: Service Design in the Age of Collaboration

 

MA thesis by Veronica Bluguermann in collaboration with Nokia, presented as part of the graduation requirements of the Industrial and Strategic Design Programme of Aalto University’s Department of Design.

Not so long ago, cell phones were only used just to make phone calls. Today hundreds of thousands of applications and services are available for smartphones. With them, people can communicate, play games, find places, and organize their day. However, the vast amount of possibilities can confuse users when choosing the best option. In addition, the global mobile content market makes it hard for users to find local solutions. This thesis in collaboration with Nokia proposes services that aim at:

  1. helping customers to meet closer their needs by customizing the mobile phone content at the time of purchasing; and
  2. generating means of collaboration among content developers, retailers and customers for producing mobile content targeted to local needs

A Participatory Design approach was applied for developing the customization services. Observation, contextual inquiry and cultural probes methods were implemented to learn from diverse users. A co-design session was conducted to explore new opportunities with Nokia stakeholders. The results are several scenarios envisioned for Mass Customization services of mobile phone content at the point of delivery. The thesis offers:

  1. a framework of collaborative creation models for Mass Customization; and
  2. insights on customers’ engagement in the activity of customization.

Download pdf

(via International Service Design Network)

26 May 2012

The Smartphone Psychology Manifesto

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In Perspectives on Psychological Science (May 2012 vol. 7), Geoffrey Miller publishes a “Smartphone Psychology Manifesto” with methodological suggestions for the use of smartphones in psychological research that could indeed have a huge impact on the study of cognition and culture.

By 2025, when most of today’s psychology undergraduates will be in their mid-30s, more than 5 billion people on our planet will be using ultra-broadband, sensor-rich smartphones far beyond the abilities of today’s iPhones, Androids, and Blackberries. Although smartphones were not designed for psychological research, they can collect vast amounts of ecologically valid data, easily and quickly, from large global samples. If participants download the right “psych apps,” smartphones can record where they are, what they are doing, and what they can see and hear and can run interactive surveys, tests, and experiments through touch screens and wireless connections to nearby screens, headsets, biosensors, and other peripherals. This article reviews previous behavioral research using mobile electronic devices, outlines what smartphones can do now and will be able to do in the near future, explains how a smartphone study could work practically given current technology (e.g., in studying ovulatory cycle effects on women’s sexuality), discusses some limitations and challenges of smartphone research, and compares smartphones to other research methods. Smartphone research will require new skills in app development and data analysis and will raise tough new ethical issues, but smartphones could transform psychology even more profoundly than PCs and brain imaging did.

Download manifesto

(via cognition and culture)

25 May 2012

For productivity apps, PCs still rule (for now)

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Gartner research suggests that there is an inverse correlation between portable devices and PC usage, reports the Financial Times.

“Is the PC era really over? The success portable computing devices including smartphones and PC tablets has some speculating that the dominance of the desktop PC, and even the laptop, may be coming to an end.

Gartner research analyst Nick Ingelbrecht and Mikako Kitagawa recently conducted a series of focus groups in the US, UK, China, Taiwan and Japan to explore consumers’ device usage and their research provides an insight into the growing importance of mobile devices and their impact on PC usage.”

Read article