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A Comparative Evaluation of Usability for the iPhone and iPad
Blekinge Institute of Technology, School of Computing.
Blekinge Institute of Technology, School of Computing.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years))Student thesisAlternative title
A Comparative Evaluation of Usability for the iPhone and iPad (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

Many everyday systems and products seem to be designed with little regard to usability. This leads to the frustration, wasted time and errors. So the usability of the product is important for its survival in the market. In many previous studies the usability evaluation of the iPhone and iPad carried out individually and very little work has been done on the comparative usability evaluation. However, there was not any study conducted on the comparative usability evaluation and measuring the performance of the iPhone versus iPad in a controlled environment. In this research work, the authors performed the comparative usability evaluation and measured the performances of the iPhone and iPad on the selected applications by considering the young users as well as the elderly users. Another objective of this study is to identify the usability issues in performances of the iPhone and iPad. A survey and experiment techniques were used to achieve the dened objectives. The survey questionnaire consisted of 42 statements that presented the different usability aspects. The objectives of the survey study were to validate the identified issues from the literature study, identify new issues and measure the signicant difference in user opinions for the iPhone and iPad. However, the experiment studies helped to measure the performance significances between the devices against the three user groups (novice user, experienced user, elderly user) and among the groups over the devices. Further, objective was to measure the satisfaction level of the participated users against the iPhone and iPad. The experiment was performed in a controlled environment. Total six tasks (two tasks per application) were dened and each participant performed the same task on both devices. Generally the authors found that the participants performed better on the iPad with lower error rates as compare to the iPhone.

Abstract [sv]

The aim of this study was to evaluate and measure the comparative usability performances of the iPhone an iPad. The preliminary focus of the study was to nd the usability issues regarding both the devices. Several dierent methods have been used in the study when investigating the answers of predened research questions. The study in this thesis was a literature review, a survey study and an empirical usability testing experiment. In the literature review, the authors studied the dierent usability issues such as inconsistency in applications, applications crashes and accidental errors.The detail list of the issues also presented in Table 2. However, the survey responses validated such issues and highlighted some additional issues such as low battery time, Blue-tooth connectivity problems, wireless connectivity problem, week signal strength and missing help. Two participants commented on the missing of a swyping feature. According to them if the iPhone and iPad had such feature then their typing performance should be improved. A survey study was conducted to evaluate and measure the significance in the four main parts of the devices i.e. system, touch screen, keypad and applications. Each part contained the multiple related statements that explored the different usability aspects. The detail and results of each statement are given in Table 4. After the statistical analysis, the authors did not nd a signicant dierence between the statements regarding the iPhone and iPad apart from in four statements. In the two statements (i.e. nding a new application in the Apple store and replacing the contents location on the interface) the users agreed that the iPad performance was better than the iPhone. However, in the other two statements (i.e. use of system in the sun light and zooming gestures) they preferred the iPhone rather than the iPad. Its means 90.47% users addressed the same issues in the iPhone and iPad. There is no dierence in their preferences regarding the iPhone and iPad. 4.76% users preferred the iPhone and 4.46% users preferred the iPad in above mentioned conditions. The empirical usability testing experiment focused on studying the usability performances of the iPhone and iPad considering three target groups. The performances comparisons were conducted by comparing the dierent participants groups and both devices. In total 60 users participated in the empirical usability performance testing study. The selection of the participants was based on their earlier experience with mobile phones usage. The detail of the participant are given in Figure 13. The comparisons results of the participant groups are shown in Table 7, the devices in Table 8 and the errors on both devices in Table 9 provided the signicance in the performances. The novice users versus experienced users comparison results across the iPhone (all six tasks) and the iPad (rst ve tasks) presented that the experienced users performed faster than the novice users with lower error rate. The results of the novice users versus elderly user comparison presented that the novice user using the iPhone ( first four tasks) and using the iPad (facebook login, location close view, new note and Evernote logout) performed faster than the elderly users with lower error rate. Similarly the results in the last comparison of the experienced users versus elderly users shown that the experienced users performed all the six tasks faster than the elderly users with lower error rate. Based on such nding the authors can conclude that the experienced users performances were better than the other two groups on both devices. The authors can also conclude that if someone is using the iPhone he/she could easily use the iPad. In the devices comparison results, the performances of the iPad across the novice users (in tasks facebook login, send a message, location close view, new note Evernote logout), the experienced users (in tasks facebook login, send a message, location close view and new note) and the elderly users (st ve tasks) were better than the iPhone with lower error rate. Base on such ndings of the empirical usability testing, the authors conclude that in the controlled environment the performance of the iPad was better than the iPhone. Three participant groups performed each task faster on the iPad than the iPhone apart from in one task. The task named location identication the iPhone and iPad performed the same across the novice user and experienced user but across the elderly user, the iPad performed better than the iPhone. Table 10 presents the results of the satisfaction level of the participants in a control environment for both devices. The satisfaction level acquired through the post test questionnaire during the experiment. The results of the novice users and the experienced users presented that their satisfaction levels were higher for the iPad than the iPhone. The experienced users results shown that their satisfaction levels were same for the iPhone as well as for the iPad. However, with the keypads performances they looked more satisfied on the iPad than the iPhone.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 90 p.
Keyword [en]
Usability, Usability Evaluation, Touch Screen, Smart-phone, iPhone, iPad, performance.
National Category
Computer Science Human Computer Interaction
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:bth-6023Local ID: oai:bth.se:arkivex8131C0FEA298162EC125793700582B93OAI: oai:DiVA.org:bth-6023DiVA: diva2:833440
Uppsok
Technology
Supervisors
Note
Near Chungi number 1 Chitterpari Mirpur Azad Kashmir Pakistan.Available from: 2015-04-22 Created: 2011-10-28 Last updated: 2015-06-30Bibliographically approved

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