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Experimenting Through Mobile ‘Apps’ and ‘App Stores’

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date10/2011
JournalInternational Journal of Mobile Human Computer Interaction
Journal number4
Volume3
Number of pages16
Pages55-70
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Utilizing App Stores as part of an ‘in-the-large’ methodology requires researchers to have a good understanding of the effects the platform has in the overall experimental process if they are to utilize it effectively. This paper presents an empirical study of effects of the operation an App Store has on an App lifecycle through the design, implementation and distribution of three games on the WidSets platform which arguably pioneered many of the features now seen as conventional for an App Store. Although these games achieved in excess of 1.5 million users it was evident through their App lifecycle that very large numbers of downloads are required to attract even a small number of active users and suggests such Apps need to be developed using more commercial practices than would be necessary for traditional lab testing. Further, the evidence shows that ‘value added’ features such as chat increase not only the popularity of an App but also increase the likelihood of continued use and provide a means of direct interaction with users.