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Availability4D: Refining the Link between Availability and Adoption in Marginalised Communities

Abstract : We present a comparative study of mobile and conventional computing technologies applied to providing access to career guidance information to high school students from marginalised communities. Reported high availability of mobile technology amongst these users would be beneficial, but our NGO partner questioned feature phones’ applicability for consuming large quantities of information. We created two systems: a text interface exposed through a mobile instant messaging service, and a website targeting conventional computers. Despite positive usability tests for the website and fears of social stigma related to mobile instant messaging, system logging over eight months of parallel deployment showed convincing advantage in engagement for the mobile system. Interviews revealed that computer infrastructure was tied to institutions where access was limited; but greater access to mobile phones (owned or borrowed) made use and advertisement to peers of the mobile system easier. Social stigma was a problem only for a minority.
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Fritz Meissner, Edwin Blake. Availability4D: Refining the Link between Availability and Adoption in Marginalised Communities. 14th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction (INTERACT), Sep 2013, Cape Town, South Africa. pp.762-779, ⟨10.1007/978-3-642-40483-2_54⟩. ⟨hal-01497478⟩

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