Abstract

In this paper, we explore the possibilities of wearable technology in supporting couples in long-distance relationships (LDRs) to achieve better insights on how wearables could be designed to fit the real needs of this user group. We approach the topic with a hands-on design workshop, where twelve participants living in an LDR created concepts and low-fidelity physical prototypes of wearables, and presented the video-recorded concepts to their remote partners to get their feedback. We thoroughly documented and analysed the workshop, and, based on the findings, we propose design considerations for designing wearable communication devices to support LDRs, including supporting secret communication modes, effortless awareness, and asynchronous lifestyle of the couples. It is also important that technology, particularly wearables, is designed so that it can be seamlessly integrated as part of everyday life and fits to different contexts.

Keywords:

co-design, participatory workshop, wearable technology, long-distance relationships

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

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Aug 11th, 12:00 AM

Exploring wearable technology for supporting couples in long-distance relationships

In this paper, we explore the possibilities of wearable technology in supporting couples in long-distance relationships (LDRs) to achieve better insights on how wearables could be designed to fit the real needs of this user group. We approach the topic with a hands-on design workshop, where twelve participants living in an LDR created concepts and low-fidelity physical prototypes of wearables, and presented the video-recorded concepts to their remote partners to get their feedback. We thoroughly documented and analysed the workshop, and, based on the findings, we propose design considerations for designing wearable communication devices to support LDRs, including supporting secret communication modes, effortless awareness, and asynchronous lifestyle of the couples. It is also important that technology, particularly wearables, is designed so that it can be seamlessly integrated as part of everyday life and fits to different contexts.

 

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