Exploring Augmented Reality App Usability: A Socially Practised Affordance Perspective

Almashyakhi, Arwa (2022) Exploring Augmented Reality App Usability: A Socially Practised Affordance Perspective. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Augmented Reality (AR) apps have the potential to transform the way in which users experience products and services. However, AR adoption rates have not yet reached the expectations of developers and the service sector. Users' expectations and experiences of AR apps can influence the adoption of AR technology. This thesis explores AR user behaviour; specifically, by focusing on the usability of AR and the underlying motives that drive users to adopt or reject AR technology. To achieve this aim, qualitative methods and multiple sources of data (858 online reviews, 62 users’ reflections, multiple apps) have been used to inform a better understanding of AR app use. Affordance theory was applied using the ‘walkthrough technique’ to identify AR affordances arising from the application of AR technology. Ten AR app affordances and five user goals were identified by investigating the performance and usage aspects of various applications. Then, social practice theory (SPT) elements (meanings, materials, competency) were applied to understand the three major characteristics of usability (interactivity, compatibility, credibility) associated with current AR apps that may prevent potential users from actualising their affordances. This study contributes to knowledge by introducing a new theory of “socially practised affordances” (SPA) which allows AR app users to actualise an app’s affordances when there is a coherence between SPT elements. Moreover, it sheds new light on how AR apps, users, and social practices are interconnected by explaining connections between materials e.g., AR apps, expected and developed meanings, user and system competencies and how these elements might drive AR apps’ users’ behaviour. This study concludes by discussing theoretical and practical implications that can give future direction to AR developers through the development of a SPA framework for AR applications.

Keywords: AR applications, Users’ expectation and experience, Usability, Socially practised affordance (SPA).

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > Norwich Business School
Depositing User: Chris White
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2023 12:05
Last Modified: 27 Sep 2023 12:05
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/93113

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