Effects of touchscreen mobile devices and e-book systems on students’ reading performance: A usability evidence

Chun-Chun Wei, Yang-Cheng Lin, Chung-Hsing Yeh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The development of e-books is gradually changing the reading habits of mobile users as the mobile
device market grows. This study conducts a user-centered experiment on the touchscreen mobile device and
the desktop computer with two popular e-book systems. 48 Taiwanese college students are recruited to perform
10 experimental tasks for collecting the quantitative and qualitative data. The experimental results show the
touchscreen mobile device is more intuitive for the students to read e-books than the desktop computer. But,
interestingly, they prefer to read e-books page by page as reading a traditional physical book. Furthermore,
students’ reading performance on the touchscreen mobile device could be compromised by poor interface
design (e.g. ‘Memory Retrieval’ and ‘Search’ functions) of an e-book system. Consequently, this study
suggests that the ‘virtual keyboard’ on the touchscreen should be improved and incorporated into new
generation touchscreen mobile devices to satisfy students’ reading requirements. In addition, most students
prefer to combine two or three options (e.g. ‘Up/Down Page’ with ‘Drag and Scroll’) to read e-books.
Therefore, the e-book interface should be more effective, flexible, and adaptable for students to enhance their
reading performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-78
JournalJournal of Engineering Technology
Volume6
Issue numberSpecial Issue on Technology Innovations and Applications
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Oct

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