Navigation Links
Mobile health apps lack behavior-change techniques
Date:5/6/2014

Behavior-change techniques are not well represented in the marketing materials for top-rated physical-activity apps, according to a team of Penn State researchers.

They also found that two types of physical-activity apps are available on the market -- those that focus on educating users on how to perform different exercises and those that focus on supporting users' motivation for physical activity.

"The app marketplace is largely unregulated and users make decisions based on developers' descriptions of apps," said David Conroy, professor of kinesiology. "Our results suggest that developers have not incorporated many behavior-change techniques to date, and there may be opportunities to integrate behavioral science to make apps that are more effective for helping people who seek to change their behavior and become more active."

The researchers identified the top-ranked health and fitness apps as of Aug. 28, 2013, on the two major online marketplaces -- Apple iTunes and Google Play. Specifically, they examined apps from the top 50 paid and top 50 free lists in the "health and fitness" category for each operating system, resulting in four lists totaling 200 apps. Next, they located descriptions of each app online, reviewed the descriptions and had them coded by two trained coders using the Coventry, Aberdeen and London-Refined taxonomy -- a list of common behavior-change techniques used in interventions and developed to give people a structure for comparing what is in one intervention versus another.

The researchers found that most of the descriptions of the apps they examined incorporated fewer than four behavior change techniques. The most common techniques involved providing instruction on how to perform exercises, feedback on performance, goal-setting assistance and planning social support or change. They report their results today (May 6) in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Further analysis revealed the existence of two types of apps, educational and motivational, based on their configurations of behavior-change techniques.

"Our results suggest that there are far fewer behavior-change techniques described in apps than in interventions, which are delivered in-person to help people increase their physical activity," Conroy said. "However, this does not necessarily mean that apps are less effective, because it is possible that a number of techniques included in the in-person intervention packages are inert. We suggest that users should consider their needs carefully when selecting a physical-activity app."

The team is completing a detailed inspection of apps to see if developers incorporated techniques that were not described in their marketing materials. The researchers also are collaborating to evaluate ways of making mobile interventions more effective by integrating advances from engineering and psychology to optimize these interventions.


'/>"/>

Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Mobile tools boost tobacco screening and cessation counseling
2. Scripps researchers recommend mobile compression device to prevent DVT after joint surgery
3. NewsWatch Recently Featured “Ruzzle," a Mobile Gaming Application on National Television
4. Mobile Health Prescription Discount Cards Saved Users 67% in 2013 off Prescription Costs
5. Dialogic Wins CTI Forum and Editor’s Choice Awards for Mobile Video Solutions and Media Gateway Technology
6. Mobile phones, apps, throw lifeline to sufferers of brain and mental disorders in remote world corners
7. North Shore-LIJ Foundation Launches Mobile Version of Website
8. Strengthen Your Gym’s Business Muscles with Mobile Marketing: CallFire's Health & Fitness Webinar Week – Jan 13th to Jan 17th
9. Proliferation of Smartphones Drives the Market for Mobile Medical Apps, According to a New Trend Report Published by Global Industry Analysts, Inc.
10. How to Make 2014 the Year Your Agency Becomes More Efficient, Improves Communication and Goes Mobile with Online Services from Aladtec
11. Business Intelligence (Mobile, Social, Cloud, Traditional) Market Worth $20.81 Billion by 2018 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... Leading pediatric oncology ... in Washington, D.C., for the 49th Congress of the International Society of Paediatric ... President of the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s National, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... named one of Michigan’s 2017 Best and Brightest in Wellness® by Best and ... Wellness® awards program on Friday, Oct. 20 from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... $3,296 in property taxes a year. In some states—like New York, New Jersey, ... By contrast, many overseas retirement havens have extremely low property-tax rates, which contributes ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Farm Forward joins Bon Appétit ... institutions in announcing the launch of the Leadership Circle , a program ... raised for food. , Founding members of the Leadership Circle also include Airbnb’s ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Nvision ... executive staff with the addition of industry sales leader, Thomas (Tom) Slott, as ... the national distribution and sales network, direct the efforts of the surgical sales ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... Oct. 10, 2017   West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc. ... for injectable drug administration, today shared the results of ... for improving the intradermal administration of polio vaccines. The ... Summit in May 2017 by Dr. Ondrej Mach ... World Health Organization (WHO), and recently published in the ...
(Date:10/5/2017)... ROSEMONT, Ill. , Oct. 5, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ ... American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) ... than opioids – to be used as a ... post-surgical pain. ... relationship, the AAOMS White Paper "Opioid Prescribing: Acute ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), influenza vaccination ... is helping communities across Massachusetts , Connecticut ... flu shots through the end of the month. *Some exclusions ... ... shot is by the end of October, according to the Centers for ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: