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Mobile User Research NVAC Consortium Mobile Analytics Panel October 5, 2006. Colleen Page Integral Usability. Outline. What is mobile work? Mobile device considerations Mobile work environment Accessibility issues Design strategies Small screen usability issues User research methods
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Mobile User ResearchNVAC ConsortiumMobile Analytics PanelOctober 5, 2006 Colleen Page Integral Usability
Outline • What is mobile work? • Mobile device considerations • Mobile work environment • Accessibility issues • Design strategies • Small screen usability issues • User research methods • Usability testing strategies
What is mobile work? • Is it all of the work that takes place away from the office? • Anytime anywhere a decision maker can be contacted is a mobile work location/situation. • Work life and personal life are interwoven. • Emergencies happen during personal time, travel time, offsite work. • People need to make decisions to resolve crises wherever they are. • People need information in order to make informed decisions.
Mobile Device Considerations • What types of devices best support the mobile activity? • Feature set • Screen size • Input mechanism • Portability • Fast, easy access • Reliable connectivity
Mobile Work Environment • What are the mobile work situations and environments? • Sitting, standing, walking? • Are two hands available for input? • Not if user is standing, moving, and carrying other items. • Are there variations in light? i.e. bright sunlight • Does user wear gloves or protective gear? • Is verbalization and audio output appropriate?
Accessibility Issues • Small screen displays are difficult for visually impaired and many older people to read. • Input devices are difficult for some people to use. • Tiny keys, toggle keys, notebook scroll pads, buttons on sides of devices have error potential for: • people with limited hand movement • anyone with a tremor • people wearing gloves
Design Strategies • Design content to render optimally on different devices. • Design graphical objects to be consistent and recognizable between devices. • Colors render consistently on different devices, are recognizable in small format. • Shapes are meaningful in large format, recognizable in small format. • Distill text to summary format for small devices. • Summarize in context with user’s role.
Small Screen Usability Issues • Users can get lost if they have to scroll down or sideways on a small screen. • Consistent title headers are helpful markers. • Graphics and content must be scaled to display optimally on small screen. • Smaller version of recognizable graphic is good. • Scrolling across a full size graphic is bad. • Frames are bad.
User Research Methods • How do we identify work activities, environments, and situations? • Structured interviews • Contextual field studies • How do we design for the actual work? • Market segmentation -> personas • Participatory design • Usability tests during design and development cycle.
Usability Testing Strategies • Usability test with different screen sizes, input devices. • Test text readability on small devices • Test recognition and meaning of graphical objects. • Compare comprehension on small device with PC. • Compare summary on small device with full text on PC. • Test navigation through info on small device. • Design lab tests in context of typical work situations. • Test some tasks with instruction to stand, sit, move, hold device as the user would in real life.
Contact Info • Colleen PageIntegral Usability, LLC • phone: 425.485.6301 • email: firstname.lastname@example.org