We have developed an Android app which can monitor the time a user spends on smartphone, the apps used and other statistics such as the GPS/location and the number of unlocks. It also allows a researcher to monitor the usage and send interactive messages in real-time or at predefined times, e.g. once the user is at home or once the user has checked the phone for more than 20 of times while on the move in less than 5 min, etc.
Users can give feedback (text and voice) on the messages. Messages could contain pictures, graphs, etc. They can show how much progress the user is achieving towards achieving a goal like “reducing usage by 20% of social network during work hours this week in comparison to the previous week”. Other techniques of Gamification and Persuasive Technology are being added towards making users aware of their own usage and enabling them of taking an informed decision about it. Other versions of the app are being developed towards combating various problematic behaviours, e.g. problem online gambling where the idea is to retrieve the betting history and then follow a rationale similar to the one described above.
B-SmartAware can be also used to persuade drivers to reduce or, preferably, stop checking smartphone while driving. While this is illegal in certain countries, it is still allowed, but obviously not recommended, in others.
The app, B-SmartAware is ready now to install from Google Play. It is not for public use and meant only for our research purposes. If you are interested in the full description and using the app and its research platform and toolkit, please email me. The app will require a code which we should issue to you and an access to the web platform to see the usage and send interactive messages and get feedback from the user of the app.
For more information about the project, please visit: https://research.bournemouth.ac.uk/project/dar/
The video below explains the concept for the case of online gambling. B-SmartAware is very similar but the Data captured are those about smartphone usage:
Snapshots from the App and its Web interfaces are below: