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  • 1. Hederstierna, Anders
    et al.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    Bronze, Silver and Gold: Effective Membership Design in Customer Rewards Programs2008Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Many companies use rewards programs to create so called “loyal” customers. Information Technology (IT) has made it possible to design such incentive programs with in principle endless variations at a low cost. It means that the company can, with the use of IT, offer non-linear incentives that create “loyal” customers more effectively than linear ones. Internet has also reduced the cost for the customer to search and compare products and services like air flights, hotels etc. In such a competitive context, the company can use the programs to gain an advantage with a differentiated offer to the customer and to create lock-in effects still at a low IT cost. Field observations show surprisingly that programs look very much alike and do not present as much variation as could be expected. Of special interest in this paper is the fact that companies typically offer three, or less, membership levels to increase the incentive for the customer to spend money at the company. These three levels come in different versions like, for example, “Bronze”, “Silver” and “Gold” or with similar labels. The reward to the customer is generally associated and accelerated with membership level. In this paper, we analyze the consequences of using membership levels as a way to create both competitive differentiation and effective customer incentives. We suggest a model for understanding how the consumer decides on spending at a company that offers a reward program with different membership levels. The decision setting for the customer is described as a risky contract with a risky time-state-contingent claim. The contract is risky since the terms and conditions for membership can be altered by the company, without any legal penalties. The claim is risky since it is uncertain to the customer whether the state required for the membership will be achieved. We show with the help of this model that the present use of a small number of membership levels could be questioned as the most effective incentive mechanism.

  • 2.
    Lövstål, Eva
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Wrenne, Anders
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Determinants of Electric Road System Adoption by Road Freight Companies2023In: International Journal of Innovation and Technology Management (IJITM), ISSN 0219-8770, Vol. 20, no 5, article id 2350032Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study analyzes the determinants of road freight companies' adoption intention regarding the electric road systems (e-roads) on Swedish motorways. A research model was developed based on the technology adoption literature and Technology-Organization-Environment (TOE) framework. Survey data were gathered from 160 Swedish road freight companies, and structural equation modeling was performed to test the model empirically. The results reveal relative advantage, a technology characteristic, as the main determinant of road freight companies' intention to adopt electric road systems. The study contributes to the TOE framework by reporting on the indirect effects of technological and organizational determinants on organizational intention to adopt technologies. © 2023 World Scientific Publishing Company.

  • 3.
    Numminen, Emil
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    The impact of online ratings on downloads of free mobile apps2017In: PROCEEDINGS OF THE 11TH EUROPEAN CONFERENCE ON INFORMATION SYSTEMS MANAGEMENT (ECISM 2017) / [ed] Dameri R.D.,Spinelli R., 2017, p. 225-232Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Consumers tend to rely more on peer information than seller information for their online product choices. Online rating systems have therefore become popular whereby consumers evaluate a product’s quality on a numerical scale. Previous studies have mainly investigated sales effects of online ratings, reporting mixed findings. How online ratings impact free app downloads is important to better understand for multiple and related reasons. Specifically, the vast majority of apps are free to download, price cannot be used by potential consumers to infer app quality, and providers may offer free apps as a means to gain market share. In this paper we analyse how average rating score, volume of ratings, and dispersion of ratings impact free app downloads. Signaling theory is used to derive hypotheses on how online rating variables impact in this regard. Data on online ratings and downloads of apps was collected for 720 apps available on Apple App Store and Google Play. Apps from the productivity and game categories were sampled to capture utilitarian and hedonic apps respectively. This choice was made to enable analysing the impact of online ratings across app type. For free app downloads, regression analyses revealed: (1) volume of ratings to have positive significant effect; (2) average rating score to have positive but insignificant effect; and (3) dispersion of ratings to have positive significant effect contingent on app type. Findings are partially consistent with signaling theory and suggest that app rating providers should attempt to attract large volume of ratings. Providing incentives for rating apps, or using a pledge in the app asking consumers to rate it, could be such means. Future research is needed on whether average rating scores are too similar for competing app alternatives to guide app choice. Further research is also needed on why dispersion of ratings positively impacts free app downloads.

  • 4.
    Numminen, Emil
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Wang, Shujun
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Does New App Launch Timing Matter for App Download Performance?: The Role of Launch Competition in the App Platform EcosystemManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper, we investigate how the launch timing of new apps due to launch competition affects new apps’ download performance. This was done using a 2-year panel data set of 1,100 U.S. Apple App Store apps divided into four categories (entertainment, gaming, productivity, and health and fitness). The study contributes to the literature on the determinants of mobile apps’ economic performance, including ratings and reviews, app updates, and revenue models, by investigating an understudied determinant—the launch timing of new apps. Using random effects panel regression analysis, we report how backward launch competition, cross-category launch competition, and release-date launch competition affect download performance differently for hedonic value- oriented (e.g., gaming, entertainment) and utilitarian value-oriented (e.g., productivity, health, fitness) apps—and moreover demonstrate these effects’ persistence over time. Important implications for app developers and app platform providers are discussed, as are directions for further research. 

  • 5.
    Numminen, Emil
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Wang, Shujun
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    The Impact of App Revenue Model Choices for App Revenues: A Study of Apps Since Their Initial App Store Launch2022In: Economic Analysis and Policy, ISSN 0313-5926, Vol. 76, p. 325-336Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    When launching a new app in one of the major app stores, the developer must decide how to generate revenues from that app. The decision includes whether to charge an upfront payment from the customer or make it free to download and whether to include in-app payments. In this study, we analysed the effect of these decisions on the amount of revenue an app generates and if it differs for gaming (hedonic value-orientation) and productivity (utilitarian value-orientation) apps. To analyse this effect, we used approximately two years of mobile app panel data from 330 newly launched US Apple App Store gaming and productivity apps. Based on random effects regression analysis, we report that free downloads combined with in-app payments are superior in revenue generation for gaming apps. By contrast, for productivity apps, relying only on either upfront payment for the app or on in-app payments generates the highest revenues. For gaming app developers, offering free to download apps is thus recommended. For productivity app developers, charging for either downloading or in-app features is more successful. This study complements existing literature by investigating revenue generation of new apps and the performance effect of specific revenue model options that developers must make in app store settings.

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  • 6. Sällberg, Henrik
    Customer Rewards Programs: Designing Incentives for Repeated Purchase2010Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Firms have since long given their regular customers special treatment. With the help of IT, many firms have established formal ways to do this. An example is a so-called customer rewards program (CRP), by which the firm rewards the customer for repeated purchase. Firms allocate large resources in these programs with millions of customers enrolled. Hence, it seems important that the CRP works effectively. By effective we mean that it increases sales. Whether it is effective or not is a matter of how it is designed. A CRP typically comes with membership levels. We study how many membership levels the firm should offer in an effective program. We also study if customers prefer individual or group rewards and whether a CRP can break and create habitual purchasing behavior. In the study, we also analyze under what conditions the customer prefers a CRP over a sales promotion. In general, the study adds to the understanding of Customer Rewards Programs as an incentive structure. There are many different ways to design these incentives and especially the continuing development of IT is expected to influence the future design and role of these types of programs. This study is part of the Swedish Research School of Management and Information Technology (MIT) which is one of 16 national research schools supported by the Swedish Government. MIT is jointly operated by the following institutions: Blekinge Institute of Technology, Gotland University College, Jönköping International Business School, Karlstad University, Linköping University, Lund University, Mälardalen University College, Stockholm University, Växjö University, Örebro University, IT University of Göteborg, and Uppsala University, host to the research school. At the Swedish Research School of Management and Information Technology (MIT), research is conducted, and doctoral education provided, in three fields: management information systems, business administration, and informatics.

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    FULLTEXT01
  • 7.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Divisibility and a goal-gradient effect in higher education? The relationship between number of examination tasks and student performance.2012Conference paper (Refereed)
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  • 8.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Bengtsson, Lars
    LTH, Lunds Universitet.
    Antecedents and consequences of consumers lead userness: The case of mobile applications2014Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Lead userness (LU) captures to what extent a user, in a given product domain, is ahead of an important market trend and expects high benefits from innovating. A comprehensive understanding of antecedents and consequences of LU are important to both theory and practice. To lead-user theory, a more comprehensive understanding of antecedents such as intrinsic motivation may contribute to improved knowledge of the underlying motivational mechanisms that explain why some users display LU. Similarly an improved understanding of consequences may help explain why these users provide advice to other consumers or often come up with attractive innovations. To practice, such knowledge may provide insights on how to identify these users at lower cost as well as how to get use of them for developing or promoting new products.

    Previous studies have investigated different antecedents and consequences in different product domains. Therefore, there is a need to further investigate the previously studied antecedents and consequences in more domains. This way a more comprehensive understanding of the relative importance of different antecedents and consequences within and across product domains can be gained.  Some antecedent may thus be more domain-specific than other ones.

    In the current study we therefore set out to investigate three previously studied antecedents of LU: consumer knowledge, intrinsic motivation and extrinsic motivation. In addition we study a fourth antecedent, technology cognizance, which may be of particular importance in the information technology intense domain we study. Further, two previously studied consequences of LU, opinion leadership and opinion seeking, are researched in the present study of the mobile application domain.

    Based on a survey study of 156 undergraduate students we report in a series of regression analyses: (1) consumer knowledge to be the only antecedent of LU; (2) opinion leadership and opinion seeking to be consequences of LU, the former being a relatively more important one, and; (3) Our findings to overall correspond highly to findings in researches of other domains ranging from extreme sports such as kite-surfing and sailplaning to the mass market of home kitchen appliances. Implications for research and practice are provided. 

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    Antecedents
  • 9.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Bengtsson, Lars
    Computer and smartphone continuance intention: A motivational model2016In: Journal of Computer Information Systems, ISSN 0887-4417, Vol. 56, no 4, p. 321-330Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper develops and tests a motivational model to explain the overall continuance intention to use computers and smartphones. Based on survey data from 192 undergraduate students, structural equation modeling analysis is used to report: (1) independent effect of intrinsic motivation on the continuance intention to use computers and smartphones; (2) independent effect of extrinsic motivation on the continuance intention to use computers but not smartphones; (3) intrinsic motivation mediating the effect of extrinsic motivation on the continuance intention to use computers; (4) Independent effect of technology cognizance on the continuance intention to use computers but not smartphones; (5) intrinsic motivation positively influencing extrinsic motivation and technology cognizance, with respect to both devices. This research contributes to an improved understanding of the independent and interrelated effects of intrinsic and extrinsic motivations to use technological devices. The findings have important implications for theory and practice regarding the overall use of technology.

  • 10.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Bengtsson, Lars
    LTH, Lunds Universitet.
    Lead user roles and their functions: A framework2013Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper we develop a framework of lead user roles and their functions. Two of the roles, innovating and diffusing are explicit in the lead user literature. The third role, the preventing role, captures how lead users act not to let inferior innovations be developed or spread. This role is much more implicit in lead user research and has until now thus received relatively less attention. Following that a high percentage of new products fail, it seems important to consider how lead users could contribute to lower such failure rates by preventing inferior innovations.

    For each role we specify functions. For instance, in their preventing role lead users may fulfil functions such as opinion seeking and use making. They may opinion seek their own innovation ideas in order to avoid developing inferior innovations and they may engage in use making (refers to persistently using an innovation with the purpose of convincing others of its superiority) in order to prevent diffusion of currently commercially available products. In specifying functions of each role we particularly pay attention to how functions within a single role, as well as between roles, are conceptually distinct from each other.

    We argue that is important to elaborate on different roles played by lead users, for instance, due to that  even in situations when lead users develop inferior innovations themselves, they may play important roles by preventing other inferior innovations from reaching the market or by recommending an innovation they perceive to be superior. Based on our developed framework we provide directions for future research. 

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    fulltext
  • 11.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Folino, Emil
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Computing, Department of Computer Science.
    The relative importance of distance education challenges to instructors in higher education – A ranking-type Delphi study2023In: Education and Information Technologies: Official Journal of the IFIP technical committee on Education, ISSN 1360-2357, E-ISSN 1573-7608Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The many challenges faced by instructors in distance education have been extensively documented in current literature. Nevertheless, the relative importance of such challenges has not been researched to the same extent. As instructors and institutions face limitations in terms of time and budget, the ability to effectively prioritise challenges becomes increasingly vital. This paper aims to investigate the relative importance of various distance education challenges to instructors. For this purpose, a ranking-type Delphi study of 90 instructors was conducted at a Swedish higher education institution of technology. In total 26 unique challenges were identified, out of which the top 13 challenges were further ranked by instructors. The ranking revealed that pedagogical challenges were regarded as being of highest relative importance, whereas technological and organisational challenges were of lesser significance. Instructors rated the following challenges as the most significant: lack of student responsiveness, diminished collaboration due to social distancing among students, substantial upfront course design investments by instructors, and limitations in instructor accessibility. These rankings were found to be largely consistent across different instructor characteristics. The findings of the study indicate the importance of investing in faculty training and support functions within higher education institutions to ensure the quality of distance education.

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    fulltext
  • 12.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Hederstierna, Anders
    Blekinge Institute of Technology.
    Bronze, silver, and gold: Effective membership design in customer rewards programs2009In: Electronic Journal of Information Systems Evaluation, E-ISSN 1566-6379, Vol. 12, no 1, p. 59-66Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Many companies use rewards programs to create so called “loyal” customers. Information Technology (IT) has made it possible to design such incentive programs in principle with endless variations at a low cost. It means that the company can, with the use of IT, offer non-linear incentives that create “loyal” customers more effectively than linear ones. Internet has also reduced the cost for the customer to search and compare products and services like air flights, hotels etc. In such a competitive context, the company can use the programs to gain an advantage with a differentiated offer to the customer and to create lock-in effects still at a low IT cost. Field observations show surprisingly that programs look very much alike and do not present as much variation as could be expected. Of special interest in this paper is the fact that companies typically offer three, or less, membership levels to increase the incentive for the customer to spend money at the company. These three levels come in different versions like, for example, “Bronze”, “Silver” and “Gold” or with similar labels. The reward to the customer is generally associated and accelerated with membership level. In this paper, we analyze the consequences of using membership levels as a way to create both competitive differentiation and effective customer incentives. We suggest a model for understanding how the consumer decides on spending at a company that offers a reward program with different membership levels. The decision setting for the customer is described as a risky contract with a risky time-state-contingent claim. The contract is risky since the terms and conditions for membership can be altered by the company, without any legal penalties. The claim is risky since it is uncertain to the customer whether the state required for the membership will be achieved. We show with the help of this model that the present use of a small number of membership levels could be questioned as the most effective incentive mechanism.

    Download full text (pdf)
    fulltext
  • 13.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Numminen, Emil
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Critical risk factors of electric road uptake on motorways: a Swedish Delphi study2023In: Transportation planning and technology (Print), ISSN 0308-1060, E-ISSN 1029-0354Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper presents the results of a ranking-type Delphi study on the critical risk factors for the adoption of an electric road system (e-road) for trucks on the main motorways in Sweden. The investment cost of such a system is high, necessitating an upfront evaluation of the adoption risk factors to reduce the likelihood of budget overruns and project delays. Participating Swedish e-road experts (N = 52) from the public sector, private sector, and academia identified 32 unique risk factors, which were divided into five categories. The three most critical risk factors, as ranked by the experts, were ‘low expansion rate,’ ‘low utilization rate,’ and ‘lengthy public-sector evaluation.’ Overall, market and financial risks were ranked as more important than institutional, technological, and sustainability risks. This study has important implications for policymakers in countries considering e-road adoption.

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  • 14.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Numminen, Emil
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Key Drivers for Infrastructure Public-Private Partnership Adoption in Sweden2022In: Proceedings for Business&Economics, Management, and Finance-Rome 2022, WestEastInstitute (WEI) , 2022, p. 19-31Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper explores key drivers and their underlying rationales for infrastructure Public-Private Partnership (PPP) adoption in Sweden. A related aim is to compare the identified key drivers for Sweden in relation to what is known for other countries. Data was collected via semi-structured interviews with 16 Swedish private sector and public sector stakeholder PPP experts. The results reveal risk transfer to the private sector, reduction of total project costs, and increase in investment alternatives as particularly important key drivers in the case of Sweden. In a country comparison of key drivers Sweden was not found to mirror any specific country or group of countries, calling for deeper analysis. Moreover a few underlying rationales put forth for key drivers were in addition to those reported in the literature. This study contributes to the literature by identifying conducive factors for PPP adoption given sparse and infrequent past country use. Hence, the findings should be considered for Sweden and countries similar to it.

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  • 15.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Svensson, Martin
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    The preference between reward choice and reward specificity in repeated purchase incentives2013In: International Journal of Economic Sciences, ISSN 1804-9796, Vol. 2, no 2, p. 56-71Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper seeks to examine individuals’ preference between reward choice and reward specificity under different requirements (number of purchases) for rewards. The main goal is thus to contribute to the understanding of how to design effective incentives. More generally our study also adds to the growing body of studies on situations when individuals prefer less choice over more choice. Methodology: We conducted an empirical field study in a fictive setting whereby students (N=99) rated their preference for three kinds of rewards that differ in terms of specificity and choice; cash, rebate coupon and product in-kind. One-tailed t-tests were performed to test two hypothesis formulated on how number of purchases required for rewards matters for preference of kind of reward. More specifically, we hypothesized that in general customers prefer more choice over less choice but that a certain threshold level in terms of number of purchases required for a reward, specificity becomes more highly valued than choice. Findings: We found reward choice to be preferred over reward specificity irrespective of the size of the spending requirement. In other words, individuals’ rated a preference for cash over rebate coupon over product in-kind as reward irrespective of number of purchases required for rewards. Surprisingly though, we found that the preference for cash over rebate coupon decreased in magnitude while the preference for cash over rebate coupon increased in magnitude as the spending requirement was changed from low to high. Potential explanations to our findings are discussed. Originality: Individuals preference between reward choice and reward specificity is an aspect of incentive design that has received sparse attention in previous studies. In this regard we draw on goal-setting theory, which previously has been used mainly within a principal-agent context.

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  • 16.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Wang, Shujun
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Numminen, Emil
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    The combinatory role of online ratings and reviews in mobile app downloads: an empirical investigation of gaming and productivity apps from their initial app store launch2023In: Journal of Marketing Analytics, ISSN 2050-3318, E-ISSN 2050-3326, Vol. 11, no 3, p. 426-442Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Mobile app ratings and reviews are important due to their influence on consumer behavior and the financial consequences for app developers and app platform providers. This paper contributes to prior work by analyzing how rating and review information in combination impact mobile app downloads. To achieve these ends, we utilize daily panel data of 341 gaming (hedonic consumption value-oriented) and productivity (utilitarian consumption value-oriented) apps tracked for almost two years from their release in the Apple App Store. Hence, we contribute to how ratings and reviews matter for the larger majority of apps, whereas previous research has mainly focused on either ratings' or reviews' impact on app performance for top-ranked apps. Results of fixed-effects regression analysis reveal different combinatory impacts of text review information (polarity, subjectivity, and review length) and rating information (average rating score, volume of ratings, and dispersion of ratings) on gaming versus productivity app downloads. Important implications of the findings for app developers and platform providers, and for future research into online ratings and reviews, are discussed.

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    fulltext
  • 17.
    Sällberg, Henrik
    et al.
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Wrenne, Anders
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    Blomqvist, Jennie
    Blekinge Institute of Technology, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Industrial Economics.
    The zero-price effect extended: An empirical study of multi-component online mobile services2014Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The zero‐price effect implies that people forgo a favourable option for a free one, not only because the free one brings no cost but also because it creates a higher positive feeling which people use in making decisions. We extend previous studies by testing this effect for three‐component online mobile services in a business‐to‐business context. Two survey experiments are conducted using a sample (N=113) of Swedish hauler managers. In none of the experiments we find any zero‐price effect. Free promotions may therefore be less effective in the business‐to‐business context than in the business‐to‐consumer context.

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