ROMAS - User behavior of mobile applications. Mobile news and Geonotes

Tim Van Lier, Jos Pierson, Bram Lievens

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report


ROMAS (Reseach On Mobile Applications and Services) is a project that deals with useroriented
assessment of (future) wireless applications and services from 2006-2008. In
ROMAS the purpose is to investigate mobile applications and services. In WP1.2. we dealt
with uncovering the urban practices of people. We are of the opinion that we first need to
know how people are moving in a city, in order to know where mobile applications could play
a role, a role adapted to the mobile lifestyle of people. In that work package we performed an
ethnographic research to identify the dimensions of urban practices. The purpose was to
explore mobile city experiences and to generate ideas.
We take a social constructivist approach in order to investigate the way people are shaping
the mobile technologies for their own purposes. So in this deliverable we look if the mobile
services, being developed in ROMAS, have enough potential affordances or are people
creating new practices to the mobile applications. What are the existing and what are the
perceived affordances?
We mean by affordances the abilities lying in an artefact. We are searching for the identity
and the purpose of in this case, mobile applications. The concept affordances is developped
by D.A. Norman and has the definition: Affordances are defined as the combination of
'perceived and actual properties of the thing - primarily those fundamental properties that
determine just how that thing could possibly be used. (Norman, 1988: 95).
Therefore in this work package we will research specific user behavior of two mobile
applications. Here we will investigate if these mobile applications are adapted to the mobile
behavior of people identified in WP1.1. So here the work is more evaluative, but we also try
to look further and try to recognize possible affordances for the two mobile applications and
beyond. What were the initial affordances incorporated by the developers? What makes it
possible or better what makes it not possible?
Therefore we ask ourselves these questions:
- How are the mobile applications experienced in an urban setting?
- Are the experiences matching the mobile urban behavior?
- What are the existing and perceived affordances of the mobile applications?
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Publication series

NameROMAS WP2.2. user behavior


  • User behavior
  • Mobile experiences
  • Urban
  • Locative
  • mobile flow

Cite this