Metodología basada en la experiencia para la mejora de la eficiencia de la evaluación de la usabilidad de aplicaciones móvilesDirected by: Ana Belén Lago
Inside the HCI (Human-Computer Interaction) field, usability testing of software applications developed for mobile devices is an emerging research area. This area faces a wide variety of problems due to the main characteristics of mobile devices. In recent years, this kind of devices has transformed the concept of telephony not only in technological terms, but also in social ones.
From the usability perspective, these devices show several limitations. This is because their interfaces are difficult to use, such as their small screens. In addition, the dynamic context that characterizes this kind of devices makes interaction very difficult. This context is extremely variable and shows a significant impact on the usability of the mobile applications. Therefore, there is a strong need to study all the context characteristics inside the usability of mobile applications field. Focusing on the usability testing performed in real environments; it has been detected that the used procedures demand a high quantity of time and effort. The captured data have low quality and require a reduction of the privacy of the user who performs the experiments. These problems make the execution of usability experiments in certain environments very difficult (e.g. at user’s home).
This dissertation explores several ways to address the limitations that have been explained by developing a new methodology that uses a knowledge base, which is made up by previous experiences, to evaluate the usability of mobile applications using a reduced amount of resources.
In conclusion, this dissertation studies whether it is possible to reduce the needed resources to assess the usability of mobile applications without decreasing the quality of results through a new methodology focused on a knowledge base. In order to do so, a new methodology to evaluate the usability of mobile applications is developed, a software platform to support the new methodology and achieve practical applicability is implemented, and results of the use of the new methodology are verified.