User Expectations and Experiences of Mobile Augmented Reality Services
Research output: Monograph › Doctoral Thesis
|Number of pages||101|
|State||Published - 9 Nov 2012|
|Publication type||G4 Doctoral dissertation (monograph)|
|Name||Tampereen teknillinen yliopisto. Julkaisu - Tampere University of Technology. Publication;1085|
Mobile Augmented Reality (MAR) as an emerging field of technology has the potential to engender services that demonstrate novel aspects like enriching the reality with digital information, location-based interaction, and tangible user interfaces. The early visions of MAR anticipated it to revolutionize the way of accessing and interacting with information in mobile contexts. However, one hindrance in this path is the lack of research understanding of the subjective user experience (UX) resulting from, e.g., the novel interaction metaphors and the mixing of realities that MAR embodies. What is more, little is known about users’ expectations of the futuristic concept of MAR and the experiences it could evoke. Because of the increasing importance of UX as a quality attribute in products and services, there is a need to understand the characteristics and expectations of UX in specific emerging fields like MAR.
The goal of this thesis research is twofold: (1) to understand potential users’ expectations with regard to UX of future MAR services and (2) to understand the actual UX of the recent first-generation MAR applications like Junaio and Layar. By understanding the scope of expectations and experience that can take place in the field of MAR, it is possible to help the design and engineering of AR-based services to consider also the experiential aspirations of potential end users.
This compound thesis belongs to the research field of Human-Computer Interaction. It contains four studies, in which altogether 401 persons participated in either interviews or online surveys. The empirical findings on expected and actual experiences are reported in six publications. The theoretical contribution is mostly conceptual, culminating to a framework that describes the facets of UX and categories of meaningful experiences in MAR. Based on the empirical findings and the framework, the practical contribution is concretized in the form of (1) design implications and (2) subjective evaluation measures to help designing future MAR services with an experience-oriented approach.
According to the results, potential users (early adopters) expected MAR services to create a great extent of pleasurable experiences, such as empowerment, surprise, awareness, liveliness, playfulness, tangibility, collectivity, inspiration and creativity. Furthermore, the expectations were attributed to a variety of service components, also relating to other ubiquitous computing aspects (e.g., the augmentation as an output, proactive functionalities, and embedding of digital content to the reality). This implies that emerging technological concepts like MAR are perceived in very diverse ways and that people’s expectations of them consist largely of general needs and desires.
The existing first-generation MAR applications, however, seem generally not to fulfill the expectations, showing a much narrower extent of actualized experience characteristics. This experiential gap, as well as the narrower extent of functionalities in current applications, contains much potential with regard to pursuing a rich and pleasurable UX in future design of MAR services.
The empirical results, conceptualizations and practical implications can be utilized and built on in academic research as well as in development of MAR. The novelty and complexity of both MAR and UX as concepts elicit an extensive breadth of aspects to be studied in detail in future research and development – regarding both MAR as a field of technology and UX as a field of theory.