Research Degree Title
Usability in mobile phone design: a comparative study of therelationship between product, user interface, network services andyoung adult users (aged 18-30) in Britain and Japan
Funded by Kenneth Edwards Foundation
Dr PJ Maguire
Prof JM Woodham
- Identify usage patterns of young adults in Japan andBritain
- Investigate the relationship between product and consumer sincethe introduction of affordable mobile phones in the mid-1990s
- Analyse design processes for Japanese and British mobile phonemarkets
- Explain how the complex relationship between product, interface, operating system and services interact to influence mobile phone usability
Grants and awards
The Kenneth Edwards Research Studentship in Anglo-Japanese Design Studies
KDDI Designing Studio, Harajuku, Tokyo
Does technological development influence the design of mobilephones differently in Japanese and British markets?
Is there such a thing as a “Japanese" product? Analysis of Japaneseproduct design within the context of the mobile phone. How, whereand by whom are Japanese products designed? A look at designculture in electronic manufacturers and design consultancies,including the use of European based agencies for parts of thedesign process. Comparison with the design process for mobilephones in Europe. Is it still possible to define products asJapanese, British or European?
- Brief overview of the changing British consumer, government,market and industry perception of Japanese electronics sinceWWII
- Significance of key products as indicators and shaping influencesupon lifestyles in Japan and the UK, eg. colour TV, Sony Walkman,word processors, PC, mobile phone
- Identification of design features common in Japanese products eguniversal symbols, shapes, cable outlets which promote ease oftransition between brands (eg. USB, Firewire, SD Card) alsoidentify and analyze any non-compatible manufacturers (eg.Sony)
How have mobile phone manufacturers and service providersresponded to increasingly sophisticated consumers for both theJapanese and European markets?
- Identify elements of consumer sophistication such as increasingaccess to information through education, media and theinternet.
- The role of the mobile phone in digitalization of society throughthe introduction of affordable, user friendly technologies.
- International marketing approaches of mobile phonemanufacturers
- Innovation amongst British manufacturers such as the Palm
In the face of increasing mobile phone capability, how can manufacturers and service providers ensure functions are easy touse and accessible?
- Inclusive design theory and practice, a brief history
- Identify easy to use products and services and the design featurethat set them apart from their competitors
- Investigate products and services used by young adults, whatdistinguishes them?
- Using evidence from the project to identify possible futuredirections for mobile phone technology