adoption rate of Smartphones and mobile apps overpass the adoption rate of
personal computer. That’s due to its portability, enriched connectivity,
efficiency, feasibility and the amount of miniature sensors attached to them.
have evolved from the essential usage like making and receiving calls and
messages, smartphones has become a portal camera, video recorder, sound
recorder, organizer, and lately they become bank cards through Near Field
little portal devices have more connectivity sensors than modern laptops, like
GPS, Bluetooth, LTE, 4G and Wi-Fi; even your smartphone can react as a hotspot
and provide internet connectivity your laptop or other devices.
found to use mobile applications more than traditional websites or web
applications, and that led also the wide use and evolvement of mobile
smartphones has embedded miniature sensors, sensors that can be found in
traditional Healthcare clinics and Hospitals to capturing the most personal
activities, such as heart rate, steps counters, walking distance or sleep
have rapidly got evolved and maturely developed, they have gone from old style
phones that have a tiny screen with buttons and a chunky sized, to a touch
screen technology and nearly edge to edge display size.
smartphones are rich in features and capabilities, thanks to the tiny sensors
that are embedded in the phones.
Connectivity sensors: like Wi-Fi, GPS, 3G, 4G, LTE and
Camera sensors: sensors that can capture high quality images, image
stabilizers, front and back images, even some phones have dual camera now for
taking best images
Security sensors: finger print sensors, face and eye detections
Activity and Health Sensors: Barometer, Geometer, Heart Rate, Accelerometer
Other sensors: Proximity sensor, light sensor, Gyroscope
sensors are useless if they are not backed up by mobile applications. Mobile applications
interact with these sensors and feedback to the user the data or information
the era of Smart-Watches and Activity trackers wearable
have the potential for helping people increase their physical activity,
nutrition awareness, scheduled alerts and notifications, such as reminders to
drink water, break and move.
currently over 100,000 mHealth apps in major mobile apps store like Apple App
Store and Google Play Store (Xu, W. and Liu, Y., 2015).
have helped people to self-monitor and educate themselves towards nutrition,
fitness, weight management that had a great effect in reducing obesity, quit
smoking, lose weight and get fit among young people.
that are facing mHealth Apps
mHealth apps are growing as people are towards healthy life styles and started
to look after their nutrition diets, fitness activities and working in a
healthy environment. mHealth app development is facing some crucial
challenging’s, that leads people to stop using the apps after a brief period of
time and abandon the application.
challenges can be categories into these areas:
§ Application Design: There is a lack of standardized design process.
Mobile applications got abandon and people stop using them, which can be
summarized in the following points.
Some people are not aware of the health application
Lack of application literacy
Lack of motivation and discipline
§ Quality Concerns:
Sometimes there is a lack of engagement of qualified professionals while
developing the application.
There is an absence of feedback of evidence indicating the clinical
effectiveness of the application after publishing.
Lack of peer review after application publishing.
§ Security and Privacy: Although most of the mHealth applications are free to download and use,
what happens to the data and information being collected and captured while
using the application? Where are they stored and how are they used? How the
application generates revenue and who funds the application development?
Perhaps these data are used towards targeted marketing, or data are
passed into other third parties for other purposes than the main purpose of the
application developers should have some Human Computer Interaction (HCI)
background or studies to enable them design a more user friendly applications. Some
organizations started to apply User-Centered-Design courses such as the course
organized by IDEO.org and +Acumen (NovoEd , 2018), to enable developers capture not just
functional requirements, but also to capture behavior requirements. This course
passes through several iterations and phases, such as investigation phase, ideation
phase, prototyping phase and finally the implementation phase. One of the
positive impacts that can be extracted from this course is that developers or
designers are in direct communication with the end user to capture detailed
usage of the system or what expected to be developed. This process facilitates
development and testing process, and ensures that developers deliver the
expected solution from end-user perspective.
Centralized Database Repository:
the two major mobile application stores (Apple App Store and Google Play
Store), users have to download the application on their own devices, test them
to see if the meet their requirements, or read through each application
previous users shared feedback, experience and the given rating for the
application. This is a very time consuming process and not efficient.
There is no
centralized database mHealth repository, to systematically evaluate the apps
regarding their effectiveness and health outcome prices and user reviews. As a
concept Xu and his team was able to develop a database repository to list and
display health related applications. As a result Xu was able to provide
detailed information for more than 60,000 health related applications from
Apple App Store and Google Play Store (Xu, W. and Liu, Y., 2015). So the concept of centralized database
repository is feasible and tested for its effectiveness.
to increase user motivation: