The phone rings but the user doesn't answer: unavailability in mobile communication

Antti Salovaara
Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT)
Aalto University and University of Helsinki
PO Box 19215, 00076 AALTO, Finland

Antti Lindqvist
Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT)
Aalto University and University of Helsinki
PO Box 19215, 00076 AALTO, Finland

Tero Hasu
Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT)
Aalto University and University of Helsinki
PO Box 19215, 00076 AALTO, Finland

Jonna Häkkilä
Nokia Research Center
Yrttipellontie 10, 90230 Oulu, Finland

Abstract

We know that phone calls and mobile text messages are not always promptly answered and responded to, yet we know little about the reasons for unavailability, its effects on a user's image, the ways in which users explain the reasons for it, and actions when users cannot reach someone. Usage logs (2,983 phone use events), Web-based diaries, and interviews (N = 20) were used to investigate occasional unavailability in a mobile communication context. We identified four categories of unavailability and found that 31.1% of the phone calls consisted of unsuccessful communication attempts and reciprocal calls back from people who were unavailable earlier. Interestingly, while participants paid attention to the need to give reasons for unavailability, they did not require the explanations to be truthful. These findings have implications for design of systems that better support the needs to manage and explain unavailability and manage pending communication requests.

BibTeX

@inproceedings{unavailability11,
author = "Antti Salovaara and Antti Lindqvist and Tero Hasu and Jonna H{\"a}kkil{\"a}",
title = "The phone rings but the user doesn't answer: unavailability in mobile communication",
booktitle = {Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Human Computer Interaction
             with Mobile Devices and Services (MobileHCI 2011)},
address = {Stockholm, Sweden},
pages = "503--512",
month = Sep,
year = 2011}
    

Publication Details

Download:
via ACM Author-Izer
DOI:
10.1145/2037373.2037448
ISBN:
978-1-4503-0541-9
Conference:
MobileHCI 2011

Preprint Version

Direct download:
salovaara-et-al-unavailability-MobileHCI2011-PREPRINT.pdf

Last modified: Fri, 21 Feb 2014 23:28:36 +0000