Some sort of card sorting – a UX experiment
This is some sort of card sorting
The goal of this research is to find out how users think when they organize their apps, how they relate each other and if there are other reasons than just “to make it usable”.
Do they care if they can access the content fast? Or do they care more about how they screen looks? Or are there other things at stake?
It is not a user test to discover potential problems with the iPhone interface. This test can be done in the future (if appropriate) with users of other similar systems , e.g. Android users. It was planned with the iPhone because is the platform that I know and have access to.
Screening the users for the test
- They own an iPhone
- They are familiar with how to work with it and how to organize the apps
Some sort of “card sorting”
Selecting the cards
- Apps that they have on their phone
- Apps that they had but deleted
- Apps that they know about
- Apps that they can guess what they are based on the name or the logo
- Apps they don’t know and can’t guess
After this the rules of the “sort” were explained:
- There are some applications that can be put together in “folders”
- This folders should be named by the user. A name is suggested by the system, and it is related to the categories of the apps on the App Store. This naming system is prone to “errors” when 2 applications of different categories are put together, it will choose the name based on the first app “dragged into” the second one to create the folder.
- There are some other apps that can’t be located on folders (some of the pre-installed apps from Apple).
- There are 4 slots for apps in the dock for easy access
- There could be a max. of 16 apps per screen, in a grid of 4 by 4
- There is a limit of maximum 12 apps per folder
- There can be up to 11 screens
- Each folder can be renamed, and different folders can have the same name
The were some constrains that I found while using the mockup. Some of them could be solved on futures tests, while others is necessary to find a way to work around them.
- The application icons will be in black and white instead of color. This takes away the option of “sort by color”.
- The language of the application names will be in English. Some users might have their iPhones in different languages and the application names could be different.Same as the “default” folder names i.e. the Calculator app is called “calculadora” in Spanish and “lommeregner” in Danish; a folder for utility apps is called “hjælpeprogrammer” in Danish.
Inverted Card Sort
I had examples (screenshots) from multiple users showing how they organize their apps. Instead of asking users to organize the applications the way they want, I will ask them to guess the reasons why the example users organized their applications in that particular way. Also, I want them to describe who the users are, what can they say about the person based on the screenshots.