From the July 2013 issue
Studying Smartphone Usage: Lessons from a Four-Month Field Study
Ahmad Rahmati, Lin Zhong
Many emerging mobile applications and services are based on smartphones. We have performed a four-month field study of the adoption and usage of smartphone-based services by 14 novice teenage users. From the field study, we present the application usage and usage characteristics of our participants. We show that their usage is highly mobile, location-dependent, and serves multiple social purposes. Furthermore, we report qualitative lessons regarding the evaluation of smartphone-based services. In particular, we highlight the cases that an accurate evaluation would require a long-term and/or field study instead of a short or lab-based study, and the cases where studying a particular application independently is insufficient and a holistic study, i.e., involving the whole device, is necessary. We further present guidelines on effectively shortening the length of a study. These lessons are supported in part by five identified contributing factors to usage evolution.
Editorials and Announcements
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IEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing (TMC) is a scholarly archival journal published monthly that focuses on the key technical issues related to Mobile Computing. It is the intent of TMC to publish mature works of research, typically those that have appeared in part in conferences.
Furthermore, it is the intent ofTMC to focus on issues at the link-layer and above in wireless communications, and to focus only on topics explicitly or plausibly related to mobile systems.
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