Evaluating Mobile Applications in Virtual Environments: A Survey

Evaluating Mobile Applications in Virtual Environments: A Survey

Ioannis Delikostidis, Thore Fechner, Holger Fritze, Ahmed Mahmoud AbdelMouty, Christian Kray
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/ijmhci.2013100101
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Context plays a central role in mobile applications but is very difficult to control, and therefore, the evaluation of context-aware applications can be challenging. Traditionally, researchers had to choose either field-based or lab-based studies but recently, virtual environments have been proposed as a middle-ground between those two methods. In this paper, the authors review previous work on using virtual environments to evaluate mobile applications. the authors identify and classify different approaches to simulate specific aspects of the real world, and analyse their relative properties with respect to evaluating different facets of context-aware mobile applications. Based on this analysis, the authors derive criteria and selection strategies that can help researchers in picking specific evaluation approaches. The authors also point out a number of research challenges in this area as well as a number of promising areas for future research.
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Virtual Environments (VEs) are relatively new communication and interaction media, developed to convincingly simulate reality and enable a broad range of different applications in a variety of fields. Example uses include gaming (e.g. Second Life, 2012), flight and driving simulators, planetariums, and military training systems. Overall, they provide a different kind of experience to users than what is possible, for example, on a desktop PC or a gaming console (Bowman & McMahan, 2007).

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