Chat interaction improvement

Image of a person using a mobile


In the previous user experience researches, it was detected that the most common barrier that people face is related to follow the Flow and Rhythm of the conversation. People were not able to follow the conversations because of many reasons such as: users were not able to write quickly or to read quickly. Moreover, basing on the guideline of the WCAG 2.0 which says that users should be able to control the moving content, the reception of messages in chats should be controlled by users too. Then, the idea of adding a button to stop the reception of messages when the user was overwhelmed emerged.


A UCD design was followed to include this new functionality in a chat interface. Firstly, users with disabilities, without disabilities and elderly people were asked about this new functionality in a hypothetical situation. Questionnaire and interview methods were used in order to obtain user opinions. The results showed that more than 87% of people considered that this new functionality could be useful for them.

This percentage indicates that this new button could be useful in a hypothetical situation, not in a real situation. Thus, it was necessary to evaluate the new functionality in a real situation. As a result, a Mockup prototype was created basing on the Whatsapp interface and adding a new button to control the reception of messages.

Image of the Mockup created prototype.

Users were asked through interviews about their opinion of this new interface and about the situation and representation of this new functionality. Then, they detailed that they preferred a button instead of a command and the position of the button should be down close to the text entry field. After that a web software prototype was created following the same Mockup interface to validate the new functionality with users in a real situation.

The prototype was validated with real users in a learning situation through one-to-one and one-to-many conversations. To validate it, observation and interview methods were used in order to know the user opinions and reactions.

Image of the web-based created prototype.


The results of the research are being analyzed from a statistical point of view. Thus, they have not been published yet. In contrast, the Output section shows some parts of the researches, which have been already published.


Twelve months (2014)


Rocío Calvo
Ana Iglesias
Lourdes Moreno


Jesús Llorés Award provided by the Spanish association of Human Computer Interaction (AIPO)

Applied Skills and Methods

Guided interviews
User Testing


Conference: "An Accessible Chat Prototype for Screen Reader Users in Mobile Devices" and "Chats for all: A user survey to improve chats' interaction"

Journal: "User-Centered Requirement Engineering for Accessible Chats in m-Learning"