Want to take part in the biggest public study on Android phone usage? Daniel Wagner, a PhD student at Cambridge University Computer Laboratory is doing research to try and find out just how Android devices are used.
The research project, called Device Analyzer, is attracting lots of people. More than 1,000 people from all over the world have signed up and more are signing up every hour.
So how does it work?
To participate in the research, all that you have to do is install Device Analyzer on your phone. The application collects usage statistics in the background while you use your phone. Personal identifiable data is stripped from the data that is collected and the data is periodically uploaded to the server at Cambridge University in the UK.
Once the data is uploaded, it is aggregated with others’ data and analyzed.
Real-time map of devices as they upload usage data to the researchers.
What is in it for you?
By participating in the program, you will gain personal analytics and discover some things about how you use your phone. In the future, researchers hope to use the data to help recommend the best phone plan based on personal usage. There are also plans to recommend apps based on the apps that you use the most. In addition, you will be granted access to the University of Cambridge’s Device Alalyzer site, where yo’ll be able to download all of your raw data. At anytime, you can stop participating in the project and delete your data from their servers, if you wish to do so.
Here’s a list of some of the data that is collected:
- when you turn on your phone or charge it
- when you make phone calls and send texts
- which apps you use
- wifi and bluetooth devices near your phone
- your coarse (network-based location)
Here’s is what the researchers had to say about why they collect your data:
Perhaps surprisingly, it is not well understood what people do with their smart phones. Which of the many features do you use? And how often? Do you often miss calls? How many text messages do you send? Mobile phone carriers know your calling patterns but often don’t make them available to manufacturers. They in turn conduct interviews and surveys to see what people like about their phones and what they use them for, but these are always limited to a relatively small group of people.
Device Analyzer performs rigorous, automatic collection. It doesn’t get tired after a week of recording what you have done and can provide a large and detailed data set covering a broad audience. We will use this data set to make recommendations for the improvement of future smart phones, extract patterns and trends and will let you benefit from our insights with cool new statistics and recommendations based on what other people do.
With your permission, we would like to share your data set with other researchers worldwide so that they can get even more from it! If you don’t want that you can just let us know with a single click and your data will only be used within the University of Cambridge.
To sign up for the project, simply download Device Analyzer from the Android Marker or use the QR code below. To learn more about this project, visit the project website at deviceanalyzer.cl.cam.ac.uk
(How to use QR codes)
Android Market Link