Smartphone Use Does Not Have to Be Rude: Making Phones a Collaborative Presence in Meetings


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Our personal smartphones are our daily companions, coming with us everywhere, including into enterprise meetings. This paper looks at smartphone use in meetings. Via a survey of 398 enterprise workers, we find that people believe phone use interferes with meeting productivity and collaboration. While individuals tend to think that they make productive use of their own phones in meetings, they perceive others as using their phones for unrelated tasks. To help smartphones create a more collaborative meeting environment, we present an application that identifies and describes meeting attendees. We deploy the application to 114 people at real meetings, and find that users value being able to access information about the other people in the room, particularly when those people are unfamiliar. To prevent users from disengaging from the meeting while using their phones, we employ a gaming approach that asks trivia questions about the other attendees. We observe that gameplay focuses attention within the meeting context and sparks conversations. These findings suggest ways smartphone applications might help users engage with the people around them in enterprise environments, rather than removing them from their immediate social context.

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Smartphone Use Does Not Have to Be Rude: Making Phones a Collaborative Presence in Meetings

  1. 1. Smartphone Use Does Not Have to Be Rude: Making Phones a Collaborative Presence in Meetings Matthias Böhmer T. Scott Saponas Jaime Teevan MobileHCI 2013, Munich, Germany
  2. 2. Motivation We wanted to enhance enterprise meetings with a mobile application.
  3. 3. Motivation -People often mentally leave meeting context when using non-meeting / non-work apps -How can we turn meeting-unrelated smartphone use into meeting-related smartphone use? -Idea: provide a game that... -enhances face to face interaction in enterprise meetings -helps people getting to know each other better -creates fun (since fun positively impacts work)
  4. 4. Related Work
  5. 5. Related Work -Use of technology in meetings -People use phones for lecture-unrelated content (Iqbal et al. [8]) -Phone use in meetings might be perceived as rude/impolite, but also efficient when used as a tool (Kleinman [12]) -Social networks at work -People are more motivated to connect to unknown people in corporate social networks (DiMicco et al. [4]) -Social networks can create and strengthen ties behind corporate firewalls (Skeels and Grudin [18]) -Social games for professional relationships -SNAG (Powell et al. [16]) -Collabio (Bernstein et al. [1]) -GuessWho (Guy et al. [7])
  6. 6. Online Survey ... to learn about how people use their smartphones in meetings
  7. 7. Online Survey -398 people randomly recruited from Microsoft HQ -85 women, 298 men, rest non-disclosed) -Average age 39 years (min 22, max 66, SD 8.14) -We asked people about phone use in -their last meeting -their average meeting -what they think others do -5 meeting types: -Conversation -Status update -Presentation -Brainstorming -Training
  8. 8. App Usage in Meetings -Most used apps: email, calendar, SMS -People think they would be productive on their phones while others would be messing around Last Meeting Others in Meeting % % Email 86.0 93.8 Calendar 61.0 62.3 Short messaging 22.7 56.0 Looking up things 22.7 48.3 Reminders & to-dos 16.9 30.3 Taking pictures 12.8 21.8 Taking notes 11.6 17.0 Browsing the Web 9.3 45.3 Phone calls 4.7 16.0 Social networks 3.5 36.5 Playing games 2.9 17.5
  9. 9. -Work-related usage correlates with... -notes applications -reminders and to-do applications -Non-work related usage correlates with... -social networking applications -Internet browsing -Correlations between applications... -When using a notes application, people are also more likely to use a reminders / to-do application -When using a browser, people are also more likely to play games or use social networks Work and Non-work Usage
  10. 10. Findings: Type and Size of Meeting -Meeting type impacts if phone is used -51.6% in presentation meetings -48.3% in status updates -42.2% in brainstorming meetings -26.3% in conversation meetings -0% in trainings -Meeting type impacts for what phone is used -Pictures most likely taken in brainstorming meetings -The more people in a meeting, the more likely people searched for something on the Internet -Participants thought... -that phone use hampers social interaction with others -not so much that phone use hampers productivity
  11. 11. Design of Meetster ... a social mobile application to stimulate social interaction between people
  12. 12. People Engine -People engine pulls data about attendees from internal corporate directories and external sources -People engine creates trivia questions and hints based on templates People Engine - attendee list - extracted data - question templates Trivia Qs Hints personal data org chart web search data ... ...
  13. 13. Mobile Application -Meetings attendees sign in to join the game -Players get trivia questions and can ask for hints -Leaderboard provides details about people a) sign in b) trivia questions and hints c) leaderboard and people cards
  14. 14. Study of Meetster ... to investigate how people use Meetster and its impact on corporate meetings
  15. 15. Study Setup -We studied the use of Meetster in 9 real meetings -114 participants (13 female, 62 male, rest n/a) -Average meeting had 12.7 attendees (SD 8.2) -575 minutes of meeting time in total -Between subject A/B/C design -3 meetings: attendee list -3 meetings: trivia game -3 meetings: trivia game with hints -Data collection -Logging data -Manual annotations -Survey data
  16. 16. Overall Usage of Meetster -Overall people... -answered 2,100+ trivia questions -peeked at 46 hints -viewed 720 people profiles -Application was used... -heavily at beginning of meetings -restrained during primary content of meetings -boosts when meeting was interrupted plication em and ionality n differ- he ques- d. Addi- the du- malized Attendee Lists Trivia Trivia w/ Hints Total # of meetings 3 3 3 9 Total meeting time 220 min 170 min 185 min 575 min # of participants 34 39 41 114 # views people cards 679 12 31 722 # of answers - 971 1,214 2,185 # of hints viewed - - 46 46
  17. 17. Learning about Other Attendees -Meetster helps to learn something about people -The more questions people played, the more they learned about others -The more hints people pulled, the better they have been introduced to new people -The variant with only the attendee list helped best getting to know people for those who did not know everybody
  18. 18. -The two game variants... -resulted in more fun -were more engaging -were more distracting -Providing hints emphasized these effects -more fun, more engaging, more distracting Fun and Distraction
  19. 19. Social Engagement -Trivia questions made experience more social -In game version with hints... -people showed around the app more often -people talked about content more often -The faster people played, the more often they asked for help
  20. 20. Discussion and Conclusion
  21. 21. Discussion and Future Work -Introduce rounds with fixed ends -We experimented with interactive tasks -e.g. leveraging camera for taking pictures of others -Incorporate other (corporate) social networks -Play across different companies (e.g. with Yammer) -Extend game for getting to know people in other contexts (e.g. at a party) -Crowdsource information through the game -Ask people to enter new information (e.g. hobbies) -Leverage questions to verify new data
  22. 22. -Survey of smartphone use in meetings -Meeting type impacts smartphone use -Phone use hampers interaction with others -Productive on own phone / others mess around -Design of Meetster -Mobile social trivia game -People engine crawls data from corporate directories -Generates trivia questions, hints, leaderboard -Study of Meetster in meetings -Attendee list helps to get to know new people -Game elements create greater engagement w/ app -Game creates greater engagement w/ other attendees Conclusion
  23. 23. Smartphone Use Does Not Have to Be Rude: Making Phones a Collaborative Presence in Meetings Matthias Böhmer T. Scott Saponas Jaime Teevan Thank you!