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Attitude of the Rudjer Boškovic Institute’s scientists to the small screen mobile devices library services : A user survey

Ivana Pažur (Library, Rudjer Boškovic Institute, Zagreb, Croatia)

Library Hi Tech

ISSN: 0737-8831

Article publication date: 11 November 2014

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to get an insight in users’ opinion on library resources/services on small screen mobile devices. Objectives were to establish which types of small screen mobile devices are used and to find out is there a tendency for using academic and educational contents on such devices. Furthermore, aim was to identify whether the users need mobile friendly library web site and services at all. Also, what library resources/services and to what extent respondents consider as the important ones for mobile friendly customization. Finally the results would serve as an orientation in building mobile friendly library web site and services. The author believed that the users were still unaware of the possibility of accessing library web sites and services through mobile devices in general; therefore, this survey also had a role of raising awareness and stimulating their interest.

Design/methodology/approach

The survey was focussed on small screen mobile devices with screen size up to seven inches (17.1 cm). Data collection was performed through a questionnaire containing ten questions. The questionnaire was created by LimeSurvey tool, and for mobile optimized version SurveyMonkey.com service was used too. The authors received 295 questionnaires, out of which 285 were taken into account.

Findings

The survey found that the largest number of respondents own smartphone/tablet/phablet. The results show that small screen devices are, to some extent, used for educational, academic and informational purposes (reading of e-books and e-journals, education, data checking, internet searching and searching of handy information), but non-academic purposes still predominate (texting, reading e-mails, phone calls, taking pictures). Overall 64 percent of the respondents has expressed need for small screen mobile devices customized library resources/services, but there are 30 percent of undecided respondents. Croatian Scientific Bibliography, e-journals database (EZB), online databases, contact information and lecture halls reservations, has been resources/services requested by respondents to be available in a mobile friendly mode.

Originality/value

The survey examines users’ opinion on a new library service before its implementation. Besides giving us a precise insight into the Rudjer Bošković Institute library users’ interest and needs for mobile friendly customization of existing library resource/service, survey gives a unique insight into the correlation of age and gender of the respondents and their answers to the question about having a small screen mobile device and opinion about the customization of library resources and services. To the author’s knowledge, this is the first users’ survey on this topic in Croatia.

Keywords

Citation

Pažur, I. (2014), "Attitude of the Rudjer Boškovic Institute’s scientists to the small screen mobile devices library services : A user survey ", Library Hi Tech, Vol. 32 No. 4, pp. 628-644. https://doi.org/10.1108/LHT-03-2014-0025

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited