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CSUN Mobile Library by Helfer Woodley Altmanfinal

CSUN Mobile Library by Helfer Woodley Altmanfinal



Presentation given at Internet Librarian 2011 by Elizabeth Altman, Doris Helfer and Mary Woodley

Presentation given at Internet Librarian 2011 by Elizabeth Altman, Doris Helfer and Mary Woodley



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  • Research and Markets: Global Mobile Phone & Smartphone Market (2010 - 2015): The smartphone market is currently witnessing high growth due to a host of factors, including: lower product cost, improved handset design and functionalities, expansion of global mobile email and browsing service, emergence of 3G and 4G network technologies, the rising competition among mobile carriers, the standardization and upgrades of operating systems. Research and Markets: Global Mobile Phone & Smartphone Market (2010 - 2015) Anonymous. Business Wire [New York] 24 Feb 2011: The global smartphones market registered growth at a brisk pace, accounting for 22% of the global mobile handset sales in 2010. According to a July 11 report from the Pew Internet and American Life Project, some 87% of smartphone owners access the internet or email on their handheld devices, including two-thirds (68%) who do so on a typical day. When asked what device they normally use to access the internet, 25% of smartphone owners say they mostly go online using their phone, rather than with a computer. As of August 15, 2011 a Pew report (“Americans and their cell phones”) shows that large percentages of SmartPhone users not only surf the web, but also interact with social media sites, send text messages, play games, take pictures, listen to music, and record video.
  • Why we needed a survey – We had already developed a number of mobile-based resources to support research and instruction, but they were for the most part adaptations of our existing web-based services. We surmised that SmartPhone users access information with different expectations than traditional desktop users. The range of mobile-ready resources and functions that might be leveraged to enhance research and instruction grows daily, but phone platforms and capabilities vary and resources are limited, so we needed to plan strategically when developing new services. In January 2011 the “Mobile Strategy Planning and Project Group“ formed within the Library to consider ways to optimize and expand access to Library services and resources for mobile users. A subgroup was created to develop a survey of to determine the capabilities of our patrons’ mobile devices and their expectations of our mobile-based services. Highlights of our mobile features: February 2008 – Introduced texting call numbers from catalog records May 2008 – Facebook April 2009 – Twitter September 2009 – Added Mosio’s Text-a-Librarian September 2010 – Introduced Mobile site with links to services and resources, and floor maps August 2011 – Added LibAnswers, which provides mobile access to a QuestionBase & text-a-librarian service. Added QR codes to catalog records to transmit call numbers and locations to mobile devices
  • There was a great deal of debate as to what constituted a “Smart” device. We let users self-identify as Smartphone users by suggesting popular platforms, and giving them a freetext field to add those not listed. The survey was set up on Survey Monkey and limited to the CSUN community by LDAP authentication.
  • 218 individuals started the survey; 200 finished. This table compares the The campus student demographics with our respondent group. Our group also included a small number of staff and faculty members. Gender: campus identified only male and female Ethnicity: campus included international students in their ethnicity numbers; we added this as a separate question to which 7% responded affirmatively (which is close to the 6.7% identified by the campus). Age: The slightly higher percentage of our respondents in the 36+ category may reflect the inclusion of staff and faculty in the survey. We asked if the respondent was upper or lower division undergraduate, graduate student, faculty or staff. Overall the profile of the participants roughly reflects the campus. Since we were targeting current and potential smart device users, we asked two questions to disqualify other mobile users. Of the 216 who answered Question 4 “If you do not currently own a mobile device which supports advanced capabilities, are you considering purchasing one in the next year?” 88% replied that they already had such a phone or intended to purchase one. An additional 8 percent were not sure, and the remaining 4% were bounced out.
  • We compared our respondents’ platform adoption with the findings of Aaron Smith’s report for the Pew Internet and American Life Project: Smartphone Adoption and Usage, July 11, 2011. The Pew survey period was roughly simultaneous with our survey. The Pew survey did not include tablets, iPods and other devices, whereas our question sought information about all mobile devices our patrons are using. Not unexpectedly, the prevalent platforms of choice were Apple and Android, followed by BlackBerry. Of the 16.5% “Other” (i.e. platforms not suggested in the question) Samsung and LG were in the lead, with 3.5% each. According to the PEW study 83% of US adults have a cell phone, 42% of them have smart phones. Several demographic groups have high levels of smart phone adoption, including the financially well-off and well-educated, non-whites, and those under the age of 45. We believe our numbers differ because our population sample trends younger than the Pew sample.
  • We collected information about eReaders in order to get a better view of our patron’s position on the market. The growing number of tablets on the market has already replaced netbooks as affordable alternatives. Their portability may also compete with laptops as device of choice. They may impact the use of smart mobile cell phones whose small screens make it more difficult to read long text. DORIS END
  • We were interested in our patrons’ non-library mobile activities so we could best match those interests with mobile-based services. This graph indicates that our patrons’ mobile activities are not so different from those of smartphone users in the general population, as documented by the Pew study (Smith, Aaron,  Pew Internet and American Life Project: Americans and their Cell Phones, August 15, 2011. ) Note: The Pew study did not include every activity we asked about.
  • The question was “What is your favorite mobile app?” -- we broke the participants free-text answers down into categories to analyze. Again we were interested in the non-library apps used by our patrons so that we could better synchronize those activities with potential mobile-based library services. Note that only 2% of the users currently use their mobile devices for reading, which contrasts with the access to full text they would like when asked in questions 8 & 9 which we will show shortly. Our users’ preference for apps in the Social Media category suggest that this would be useful avenue for increasing their interaction with the library. Perhaps there would be an interest in book recommendations or “Favorite Resources” that they would find helpful.
  • Our users’ favorite web activities are most concentrated in web browsing (predominantly, Google), social media, and news/weather/sports/gossip. This tells us they go to their phones for information frequently, which is yet another reason we need to make our search tools (and results displays!) more like Google, in order become a regular mobile-friendly source of academic information.
  • We wanted to measure the use of our current mobile-friendly features beyond what server logs could tell us. Of the features used, checking library hours was by far the most popular. This is not surprising since we are a commuter campus. Note that a previous slide showed only 2% were reading on their mobiles but 33 % searched the Library catalog and 30% searched the databases. One interpretation is that the respondents are gathering citations of titles they want to read later in another format (print) or using another device (personal computer). The low number for texting a librarian may be due to the variety of e-reference tools we offer, including email, chat, and instructional guides. Almost 25% of the respondents had never used any of our mobile access features! We of course want to know why—the answer could be in insufficient marketing, a general absence of mobile support on other campus web sites, or simply that our mobile features didn’t meet their needs. This makes the next question even more important.
  • According to Question 5, the top 5 phone features most often used by our users were text messaging, email, web browsing, accessing social media, and using maps or GPS (interestingly, these did not correspond, necessarily, to the most used apps). This is a look at our Question 8 – which of the Library’s mobile features have you used – clustered by respondents who are using those most popular features in Question 5. There is no notable variation in the pattern of usage.
  • Renew library items from you mobile device was the most requested additional service to make available, and we were able to implement this feature rather quickly. The second most-requested service is the ability to read full-text articles, although only 2% of respondents currently use their devices to read. A growing number of platforms provide a mobile interface (e.g. EBSCO) or an app (e.g. Gale and Naxos). However, not every platform supports every phone platform, which in the long term may discourage attempts by students to access content. One hiccup is that some content platforms require Flash. Currently the iPad tablet cannot access ArtStor. Oddly, rate and review titles was the least requested additional service, which is interesting considering the dominant preference for social media activities.
  • Here’s an additional crossmap with the same group
  • The mobile market is highly volatile and it is hard to predict how future smart phone features and app development will impact users’ preferences for accessing library content and services. It’s also unclear whether the growing market of tablets – increasingly more affordable – will supplement mobile access to library content.   The Library’s Mobile Strategy Planning and Project Group will use the survey results to prioritize our development of subsequent mobile-friendly features, based on our patrons’ wishes, their device capabilities, and projected changes in the smart mobile market.   We plan to repeat the survey next year to keep our fingers on the pulse of how the market and user expectations evolve.

CSUN Mobile Library by Helfer Woodley Altmanfinal CSUN Mobile Library by Helfer Woodley Altmanfinal Presentation Transcript

  • A Survey of (Smart) Mobile User Trends at the Oviatt Library Elizabeth Altman Doris Helfer Mary S. Woodley Internet Librarian, October 17, 2011
  • Why (Smart) Mobile?
    • Smartphone market is expanding rapidly
    • 25% of smartphone owners access Internet resources almost exclusively on their mobile devices
    • High usage rate of “non-traditional” features, such as social media, texting, gaming and video recording
    Internet Librarian 2011
  • Mobile: Are We There Yet? Internet Librarian 2011 Internet Librarian 2011
  • Survey Development
    • 16 questions / comments
      • Type and use of mobile device (5 questions)
      • Library Mobile services (2 questions)
        • Use of current features
        • What features would they like added
      • Demographics (5 questions)
      • Additional comments (1)
    • Optional enry to win $25 gift card
    • Survey open 4/28/2011 to 5/31/2011
    Internet Librarian 2011
  • Survey Results: Who participated Internet Librarian 2011 Undergraduates: 84% Graduate Students: 11.5% Faculty Staff: 4.5%
  • Question 1: “ Please select all types of mobile device you use currently.” Internet Librarian 2011
  • Question 2: “ If you use (or plan to use) a tablet or dedicated eReader to access Library resources and services, which devices do you use?” Internet Librarian 2011
  • Question 5: “ What features do you most commonly use on your device?” Internet Librarian 2011
  • Question 6: Favorite Cell Phone Apps (Analysis) Internet Librarian 2011
  • Question 7: Favorite Web Sites (Analysis) Internet Librarian 2011
  • Question 8: “The library provides access to the following activities with your mobile device. Select the ones you have used.” Internet Librarian 2011
  • Q8, Crosstabbed with 5 Most Used Smartphone Features Internet Librarian 2011
  • Question 9: Which services would you like the Library to provide through your mobile device? Internet Librarian 2011 Internet Librarian 2011
  • Q9, Crosstabbed with 5 Most Used Smartphone Features Internet Librarian 2011
  • What Next?
    • Prioritize development: add features, inform vendors of our findings, investigate potential app
    • Watch market trends, especially tablets
    • Repeat survey
    Internet Librarian 2011
  • Bibliography
    • Smith, Aaron,  Pew Internet and American Life Project: Americans and their Cell Phones, August 15, 2011. ( http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/Cell-Phones.aspx )
    • Research and Markets: Global Mobile Phone & Smartphone Market (2010 - 2015) 2011. United States, New York: Business Wire. http://search.proquest.com/docview/853596340?accountid=7285 .  
    Internet Librarian 2011
  • Bibliography
    • Savitz, Eric. 2011. "Apple: 50% Of Mobile Phone Sector Operating Profits In Q1." Forbes.com 4. Business Source Elite , EBSCO host (accessed September 19, 2011).
    • Emma Haak . " iDOMINATION."   Fast Company . Boston: Sep 2011 . , Iss. 158; pg. 136, Proquest (accessed September 26, 2011).
    Internet Librarian 2011
  • Bibliography
    • "Survey Says: Smart Phone Users Active But Frustrated." Seybold Report: Analyzing Publishing Technologies 11, no. 16: 13-15. Business Source Elite , EBSCO host (accessed September 19, 2011).
    • Smith, Aaron,   Pew Internet and American Life Project: Smartphone Adoption and Usage , July 11, 2011.
    Internet Librarian 2011