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Wireless Usability 2001-2002 Report

The results of the full device and services usability study

"It‘s well worth reading, especially if you are an organization that does basically anything with wireless." – Slashdot

 
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    Synopsis – Wireless Usability 2001-2002 Report
    53 pages, with illustrations and charts

This report is based on a study designed and conducted by Hastings Research to establish the present state of usability for wireless devices, protocols, and connectivity in the U.S.

The study consisted of extensive user testing, with a total of 25 subjects (17 of them IT professionals, and 8 non-technical subjects), 10 wireless services, 6 portals, and 23 devices, including a variety of cellular phones, Blackberries, Palms and Handsprings, and handheld PCs (HP Jornada and Compaq IPAQ).

Much discussion has been published regarding wireless access over the last few years, and its implementation in both the U.S. and other countries. Much – perhaps most – of this writing has a distinctly negative slant, focusing on WAP deficiencies, why wireless is still unusable, and how long it will be before it is ready for a mass audience. (With plenty of glowing positives coming from wireless salespeople, of course.)

In fact, what we found is an immature industry – that has nevertheless started to deliver real value in certain areas.

Note: The playing field has changed since this report, particularly with the introduction of GPRS Handsprings with QWERTY keyboards, which has broken RIM’s monopoly for that feature. The bulk of the report, particularly the horrors of PDA navigation schemes, remains fully valid.

The initial part of the report covers the results of the study – the research. The second part describes the potential ways to effectively implement wireless right now, either as a buyer and user of wireless devices, or for delivering content to employees, partners, or the general public via your intranet or Web site.

Authors: Nicholas Carroll, Mardee McGraw, Sheldon Brahms, Deborah Rodgers

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Keywords: usability, wireless access protocols, test, report, study, devices, nicholas carroll, sheldon brahms, testing, wap, ergonomics, interaction, enabled, online

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