Smartwatch interaction techniques supporting mobility and encumbrance

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Singh, Gaganpreet
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Smartwatches have evolved to the point of operating complex mobile apps and thus enable more versatile types and methods for accessing information, anytime and anywhere. However, by directly inheriting the traditional touch techniques as those used on smartphones, designers have missed a significant opportunity to leverage the full potential under which smartwatches are operated in, particularly when these are used on-the-go, or when the interaction is encumbered, i.e. when the users’ hands are busy. The goal of this thesis is to explore the effect of mobility on smartwatch use, and to design techniques to support mobility and encumbrance. In this thesis, I first explored the impact of mobility and encumbrance on common workspace navigation tasks. Based on the initial findings, I proposed a hypothetical design-space accumulating the factors that aim to reduce the efforts required for smartwatch interactions on-the-go. I developed a set of new interaction techniques for panning and zooming tasks in line with our design-space and evaluated their performance with a user experiment. Overall, the ultimate motivation of this thesis is to bring forward the full potential of smartwatch as a wearable device.
Smartwatch, Interaction Techniques, Mobility, Encumbrance