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Positive user experience over product usage life cycle and the influence of demographic factors

  • Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST)

Abstract and Figures

This paper reveals how the patterns of positive user experience in relation to a product vary over the usage life cycle, from before purchase to disposal/repurchase, and in what way the positive experience interacts with demographic factors. As constructs of positive user experience, five attributes of positive user experience were adopted in the study: aesthetics; instrumentality; association; self-focused identification; and relationship-focused identification. Love letter, UX curve and retrospective interviews were used as methods. A total of 49 people participated in the study. The results indicate that the critical attributes of positive user experiences differed to a large extent according to the phase of product usage. However, these differences were not significant in terms of gender and age. Among the five attributes, instrumentality played a main role in positive experiences throughout the product usage life cycle, while the importance of the other attributes tended to decrease after first-time usage. The findings highlight implications for design practice that can aid the process of designing for long-lasting positive user experience throughout the product usage life cycle.
Content may be subject to copyright. 85 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Amassing reliable and detailed data about intended users has
become increasingly critical to design practitioners as consumer
markets increasingly ask for the development of products and
services that ensures personal t, both physical and psychological
(Kramer et al., 2000; Spinuzzi, 2005). One challenge is that many
user research approaches tend to focus on identifying users’
needs at hand while being limited in drawing a holistic picture of
how their experiences in relation to the products are inuenced
by and associated with different user characteristics (e.g., prior
knowledge, physical capability, and personal values). To overcome
the challenge, recently the relationship between user experience
and user characteristics has been explored in design research. For
example, Kim and Christiaans (2012) and Kim (2014) developed
an empirical framework through a cross-cultural study that
explained the inuence of user characteristics and product types
on users’ negative experiences. For instance, complaints related to
tactual qualities (e.g., the roughness and friction of materials) are
more evident for South Koreans than American and Dutch people
when they use a simple product such as an alarm clock. These
frameworks are of value in foreseeing and reducing unwanted
negative experiences, as they provide a structured overview
of when and how users with particular characteristics would
be hindered. While useful in avoiding or mitigating negative
experiences, in our view they would not be particularly helpful
for designers in their endeavour to facilitate positive experiences;
minimising negative experiences, that is, the absence of a problem
or pain is not necessarily equal to addressing what makes the
experience positive (Hassenzahl, 2010).
Therefore, this paper aims to extend the current understanding
of the inuence of user characteristics on user experience by
shedding light on people’s positive experiences with products. In
recent years, several initiatives to design for positive experiences
have gained attention and momentum in design research
and human—computer interaction (HCI). Examples of such
initiatives are Positive Design (Desmet & Pohlmeyer, 2013),
Experience Design (Hassenzahl, 2010), Positive Computing
(Calvo & Peters, 2014), and Positive Technologies (Riva et al.,
2012; for an overview of the initiatives, see Peters et al., 2018;
Zeiner et al., 2018). The aforementioned initiatives support
designers in being aware of the key factors that contribute to
positive experiences (e.g., pleasure, virtue, personal signicance,
autonomy, competence and relatedness).
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle
and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
JungKyoon Yoon 1, Chajoong Kim 2,*, and Raesung Kang 3
1 Department of Design and Environmental Analysis, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
2 Department of Design, UNIST, Ulsan, South Korea
3 I.M.LAB, Seoul, South Korea
This paper reveals how the patterns of positive user experience in relation to a product vary over the usage life cycle, from before
purchase to disposal/repurchase, and in what way the positive experience interacts with demographic factors. As constructs of positive
user experience, ve attributes of positive user experience were adopted in the study: aesthetics; instrumentality; association; self-focused
identication; and relationship-focused identication. Love letter, UX curve and retrospective interviews were used as methods. A total
of 49 people participated in the study. The results indicate that the critical attributes of positive user experiences differed to a large extent
according to the phase of product usage. However, these differences were not signicant in terms of gender and age. Among the ve
attributes, instrumentality played a main role in positive experiences throughout the product usage life cycle, while the importance of the
other attributes tended to decrease after rst-time usage. The ndings highlight implications for design practice that can aid the process of
designing for long-lasting positive user experience throughout the product usage life cycle.
Keywords – Experience Design, User Experience, Time, Usage Life Cycle, Demographic Factor.
Relevance to design practice – The paper provides designers with a systematic understanding of positive user experience through the
lenses of the phases of the product usage life cycle and inuence of demographic factors. The ndings can serve as a source of inspiration
and reference in holistically addressing intended users’ needs and expectations in different phases of product use.
Citation: Yoon, J., Kim, C., & Kang, R. (2020). Positive user experience over product usage life cycle and the inuence of demographic factors. International Journal of Design,
14(2), 85-102.
Received April 24, 2019; Accepted July 14, 2020; Published August 31, 2020.
Copyright: © 2020 Yoon, Kim, & Kang. Copyright for this article is retained
by the authors, with rst publication rights granted to the International Journal
of Design. All journal content is open-accessed and allowed to be shared and
adapted in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial
4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) License.
*Corresponding Author: 86 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
Moreover, a number of recent studies address the importance
of longitudinal evaluation because user satisfaction with product
is ascribed to a wide range of product aspects over time, e.g.,
aesthetics, physical comfort, usability, social acceptability, etc.
The focus of design has extended from addressing the moments of
purchase and initial use to establishing a meaningful user–product
relationship and its long-term experiential impact. Corresponding
to the broadened design focus, researchers have emphasised the
necessity of understanding users’ experiences over a long span of
time. Hassenzahl and Tractinsky (2006), for example, demonstrated
experiential aspects of design, emphasising its dynamic, complex,
situated, temporal as well as durable characteristics. Von
Wilamowitz-Moellendorff and his colleagues (2006) revealed
how pragmatic and hedonic qualities interplay in different phases
of product use. According to them, the perceived importance of a
product’s pragmatic qualities remains high over time, whereas the
appreciation of hedonic qualities tends to taper off.
Karapanos (2013) conducted two studies that provided
empirical ndings on the differences between initial and prolonged
experiences. The rst study revealed that in initial interactions with
a product, users tend to focus on its usability and the stimulation
caused by its aesthetic qualities. After the product has been used
for some time, users become less concerned about its usability
and other aspects of the product (e.g., novel functionality and
communication of a favourable identity to others) become more
important. In the second study, three phases were identied
in the adoption of the product (i.e., orientation, incorporation,
and identication), reecting different qualities of the product
with distinct temporal patterns. The phase of orientation begins
after anticipating an experience and results in the formation of
expectations. The transition happens across the three phases
motivated by three forces: familiarity; functional dependency; and
emotional attachment. Before orientation, expectations are formed
based on anticipation. In the orientation phase, the experience of
novel features and learnability leads to excitement or frustration. In
the phase of incorporation, long-term usability becomes even more
important than the initial learnability and the product’s usefulness
becomes the major factor impacting users’ overall judgements.
Finally, personal and social meaning play an important role in the
identication phase once the product is accepted.
These studies offer insights into how users’ experiences
generally change over time. However, it is of importance to
note that few empirical studies have investigated how and when
particular attributes of positive experiences arise over the product
usage life cycle and how they would differ depending on user
characteristics. This is critical in that the degree of users’ perceptions
of the experiences (both positive and negative) uctuates over the
phases of the usage life cycle—from before purchase to usage
to disposal/repurchase (Karapanos et al., 2010)—and different
user populations may show different patterns. We propose that
having an awareness of these differences can be advantageous for
designers in gaining an in-depth understanding of their intended
users and deliberately creating positive experiences that t their
characteristics (e.g., demographic factors).
The paper explores possible links among user characteristics,
product usage life cycle and positive user experience.1 The research
question was: how do interactions between demographic factors
and usage life cycle affect positive user experience? To answer
the research question, an exploratory study was carried out. The
study examined: (1) how the product usage life cycle interacts
with positive user experience; and (2) how demographic factors
affect positive user experience (see Figure 1). In the following
section, we look at the literature on designing for positive user
experience, the various roles of demographics in user experience
and the attributes of user experience, based on which the study
was operationalised. Then, we report the study set-up and its
results. The paper nishes with a discussion of the key ndings
and their implications.
Designing for Positive User Experience
In recent years, there has been an emerging interest in the relevance
and applicability of design in facilitating positive experiences that
build on the insights from the scientic studies of well-being and
happiness (i.e., positive psychology). This section offers a brief
overview of the development of initiatives in the elds of design
and HCI research, and the implications for the current paper,
before it introduces and reports the main study.
Recognising the potential contribution of design and
technology to well-being (both psychological and physical),
researchers have explored the idea of how products can be developed
to support users in their pursuit of a pleasurable, purposeful and
satisfying life. The approaches, in general, extend beyond the
traditional focus of troubleshooting, that is, minimising discomfort
and inefciency caused by design. Instead, they aim at designing
products that explicitly address factors associated with well-being,
such as pleasure and relatedness. For example, Positive Computing
(Calvo & Peters, 2014) focuses on developing technologies that
enable determinants of well-being (e.g., gratitude, self-awareness
and autonomy) and argues for the necessity of evaluating the design
outcomes against such determinants. Similarly, Positive Design
(Desmet & Pohlmeyer, 2013) builds on insights from positive
psychology to create products that mediate or enable experiences
that are pleasurable, meaningful and virtuous. The framework of
Positive Design indicates that design-mediated well-being requires
JungKyoon Yoon is an assistant professor in the Department of Design
+ Environmental Analysis at Cornell University. His research focuses on
experience design with an emphasis on affective experiences, subjective well-
being, and design-mediated behaviour change.
Chajoong Kim is an associate professor in the Department of Design and the
founder of Emotion Lab at UNIST. He earned an MSc and PhD at the Faculty
of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology. His main
research interests range from user experience design, design for well-being and
cultural inuence in the human-product interaction. With these research topics,
he has published in, among others, Design Studies, The Design Journal, Journal
of Design Research, and International Journal of Design.
Raesung Kang is a UX designer at I.M.LAB, a Seoul-based interactive media
studio developing products and services for healthcare such as rst aid and medical
training. He earned an MSc in industrial design from UNIST on user experience
archiving application development for design practitioners. His research interest
is in developing design methodology and tools for promoting empathy between
designers and users for better user experiences in products or services. 87 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
J. Yoon, C. Kim, and R. Kang
at least one of these three aspects without any of them conicting
with the others. Experience Design (Hassenzahl, 2010) focuses on
fullling universal psychological needs as a means of increasing
possible user happiness. Hassenzahl proposed to identify patterns
of need-fullling experiences and inscribe them into products or
activities enabled by the products. More recently, by incorporating
social practice theory, Shove et al. (2012) and Klapperich et al.
(2018) developed Positive Practice Canvas (PPC), a design tool
that helps designers systematically gather nuanced insights about
everyday positive experiences and design for them. PPC supports
designing for well-being by guiding the process of gathering
instances of enjoyable and meaningful practices and identifying
related psychological needs.
Although the terms look different across approaches,
the focus is commonly on the short- and long-term impact of
design on users’ well-being by leveraging well-being-related
determinants for the conceptualisation and evaluation of products.
We adopt the meaning of positive experience suggested by the
framework of Positive Design (Desmet & Pohlmeyer, 2013)
because it accounts holistically for the constructs for positive
experience in human–product interactions: positive affect (i.e.,
pleasure), pursuit of personal goals (i.e., meaning), and moral
good (i.e., virtue) experienced through products. Thus, in the
present research, experiences are regarded as positive if they
satisfy at least one of the following criteria without conict: (1)
the experiences involve pleasant feelings; (2) the experiences are
in line with personal values and goals; and (3) the experiences
involve or result in morally good behaviours for oneself or others.
The aforementioned approaches provide inspiring pathways
towards designing for positive experiences by extending the issues
of design from the narrow emphasis on physical t and efciency
to broader psychological human needs. However, as pointed out
by Peters et al. (2018) and Klapperich et al. (2018), these theory-
driven approaches can be difcult for designers to apply to their
practices because they mainly deal with broad directions, being
limited in offering clear design features relating to well-being
determinants. The broad view may not be actionable enough for
designers in addressing specic contexts or user groups.
To overcome these challenges, recent studies have
explored how positive experiences could be designed for in
specic contexts. Examples include an in-depth analysis of
need fullment in leisure and work contexts by Tuch et al.
(2016), while Lu and Roto (2016) explored positive experience
(particularly pride) in the domain of work. These studies enable
designers to take a close look at the ways in which design
contributes to positive experiences. While helpful, the focus of
these studies tended to be on a particular context in isolation, so
were limited in providing a comprehensive overview of when and
how people nd their experiences positive in relation to products
across different contexts and users’ characteristics (e.g., gender
and age). Therefore, the current study aims to investigate the roles
that products play in positive experiences in everyday situations,
paying attention to the inuence of user characteristics from a
long-term perspective, i.e., product usage life cycle.
Identifying the Inuence of Demographic Factors on
Positive Experiences over Product Usage Life Cycles
The previous section explained the concept of positive experience
in relation to the literature on design for well-being. This
section reports on a study that investigated how positive user
experience varies over the product usage life cycle and what roles
demographic factors play. Before reporting the study, we describe
how it was operationalised with a focus on user characteristics,
attributes of user experience, and product usage life cycle.
Roles of Demographic Factors in User Experience
Users can be described in many ways: demographic factors;
medical conditions, personality; socio-economic circumstances;
technology literacy; anthropometry; and physical and cognitive
capabilities. The importance of considering users’ individual
differences (i.e., user characteristics) has gained attention in design
research with an emerging realisation that, apart from a product’s
functions and performance, the perceived qualities of user
experience can be ascribed to variations of user characteristics.
Several factors of user characteristics have been studied in terms of
their inuence on consumers’ complaining behaviour (Donoghue
& Klerk, 2006; Keng & Liu, 1997), consumer (dis)satisfaction
(Chen-Yu & Seock, 2002; Kim, et al., 1999; Mooradian & Olver,
1997; Sheth, 1977) and usability issues (Han et al., 2001). Recently,
Kim (2014) and Kim and Christiaans (2016) identied that user
Before purchase
First-time usage
User Experience
Usage Life
Figure 1. The conceptual framework of the study. 88 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
personality and socio-economic aspects have no correlation
with usability problems with consumer electronics. The study,
however, revealed a strong correlation with age differences. For
instance, younger people mainly complained about the functional
quality of their product (e.g., performance), while older people
largely complained about the operation of a product (e.g., hard to
use). Interestingly, gender made no difference in the occurrence
of negative user experience according to the results of the study.
While the inuences of several types of user characteristics on
negative experiences have been extensively studied, whether
and how the ndings could be replicated in relation to positive
experiences are yet to be explored. In this paper, we focus on
demographic factors, in particular gender and age. While all other
factors of user characteristics have some relevance to design,
these two factors were specically chosen because they have
been proven to be related to general consumer preferences and
satisfaction with product use (for an overview of the relevance of
user characteristics to design, see Leventhal et al., 1996).
Attributes of User Experience
For the current study, ve attributes of user experience (hereafter, UX
attributes) were determined 2: (1) aesthetics; (2) instrumentality; (3)
association; (4) self-focused identication; and (5) relationship-focused
identication. These were based on the frameworks of user
experience (e.g., Hassenzahl, 2003; ISO, 2010; Rafaeli &
Vilnai-Yavetz, 2004), product experience (e.g., Desmet & Hekkert,
2007) and product pleasure (e.g., Jordan, 1999; Norman, 2004).
In a previous study (Kang et al., 2016), the representativeness
and inclusiveness of the ve attributes were validated through an
online survey in which 102 participants described their past positive
experiences in response to products. All of the collected sample
experiences could be effectively represented by the ve attributes.
Table 1 outlines the denitions and examples of the attributes.
Product Usage Life Cycle
To identify when and how demographic factors inuence positive
user experience in different phases of product usage, we adopted the
models of Dazarola et al. (2012) and Ketola (2005) as a framework
for the current study (see Figure 2). The models describe the product
usage life cycle in chronological order from before purchase to
discarding or repurchase. Our reference model consists of seven
phases of product usage: before purchase; purchase; unboxing;
rst-time usage; familiarisation; use; and disposal/repurchase.
Before purchase: This is a phase during which a user is aware
of the existence of the product and product-related thoughts are
developed. Visual contact between user and product is made
through direct vision or through paper or virtual catalogues
before the acquisition. The phase is usually accompanied by
exploration of the product. Expectations are created about the
experience of using a product or its features and benets.
Purchase: This is a phase in which the user purchases the
product at a sales point with the purchase decision being
based on all the acquired experience and benets.
Unboxing: During this phase, the package of the product
is opened. It is an anticipatory moment for the user, who
performs the ritual of using the product for the rst time.
First-time usage: This is a key event in user experience during
which product features, installation, preparation, assembly
and rst usage are enabled for the rst time.
Table 1. The denition and example quote of ve UX attributes.
Attribute Denition Example quote
Aesthetics The experience is about the perceived material qualities of a product, including
visual, auditory, tactile, olfactory, and gustatory senses.
“I love my Lamy Safari because of the shape and
texture of the fountain pen.”
The experience is about how useful and efcient a product is in achieving
task-oriented goals. Instrumentality is closely associated with usability,
convenience, functionality, and practicality.
“My AeroPress machine is easy to make brewed
coffee and functionally simple.”
The experience is attributed to something (or someone) that is represented
by the product. A product plays a mediating role that stimulates interpretation,
memory retrieval, and association (e.g., a sense of achievement portrayed
by a trophy).
“I cherish this necktie that I received from my
daughter because it represents her love for me.”
The experience is about the inuence of using (or owning) a product on one’s
self-perception and expression of their identity (e.g., being an independent
traveller enabled by using a navigation app).
“I like my Nike running shoes because they express
my lifestyle–young, energetic, explorative, and
The experience is about the inuence of using (or owning) a product on
one’s social identity and relationships with other people (e.g., showing one’s
appreciation by sending kudos to team members through a chatting-app).
“I gladly followed the dress code policy to show my
respect to the golf club’s members and its tradition.”
Figure 2. Seven phases of the product usage life cycle in the study. 89 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
J. Yoon, C. Kim, and R. Kang
Familiarisation: During this phase, the user becomes familiar
with operating the product and its primary functions. The
product performs the main functions for which it was created
and interacts with the user.
Use: This is a phase when the user fully experiences the
product over long periods of time. General opinions about
the product are formed in this phase.
Disposal/repurchase: This is the time when the nal and
physical separation between the user and the product occurs.
It either does not perform its primary functions or it is not
used any more. At this stage, it is thrown away, left for
collection, sold, reused, recycled, or replaced by a newer
model of the same product.
A total of 49 participants were recruited in total. Their ages
ranged between 20 and 62 (M = 42.3; SD = 13.2) and 51% of the
participants were female. The participants were recruited through
social media and were paid for their contribution. As cases of
positive user experience covering the whole product usage life
cycle are the core material for the study, they were selected on
the basis of the following criteria: anyone who had a product 3
that provided them with positive experiences, that they had used
for more than a year but did not use it any more, or that was
repurchased or repeatedly used after the previous one at the time of
the study. The concept of positive experience was communicated
to the participants as dened in the present study. In addition, as
generation is the key to represent age, we included the variable
generation with three categories: baby boomer (1955-1963),
Generation X (1964-1982) and Generation Y (1982-1995). See
the number and gender per category in Table 2.
The questionnaire started with a brief introduction that described
the aim of the study and asked about the participant’s gender and
age. The rst part of the questionnaire guided the participants to
report their positive experiences in relation to products from the
rst time they encountered the product until the time of this study.
They were presented with a set of guiding questions in the form of
a love letter (Martin & Hanington, 2012) that asked about the age,
appearance, and character of the product, and then the time when the
participants encountered the product, what happened, their strengths
and weaknesses and the overall experiences with the product.
The second part of the questionnaire was meant to help the
participants become well acquainted with the denitions of the
ve UX attributes as a means of a sensitisation exercise. First, the
participants were asked to report which aspect of the product was
critical in making them feel positive about it (i.e., any particular
reasons): for example, I love the food processor because it is very
safe and grinds very well. This was about their overall positive
experience of the product before receiving the denitions of the
ve UX attributes. Then, they were instructed to rate the relevance
of each of the ve attributes on a 5-point Likert scale for the
selected product. The denition of each attribute (e.g., aesthetics
means the experience that results from the perception of sensorial
qualities of a product) was given with product examples (e.g., the
form and colour are beautiful; the sound is pleasant; it gives a soft
and warm feeling).
The third part of the questionnaire guided the participants to
express their experiences throughout the product usage life cycle
by using a template that visualises the positive and negative valence
based on a bipolar, up-and-down pattern, a method often referred
to as the UX curve, as shown in Figure 3 (Kujala et al., 2011).
The vertical axis refers to the extent to which the participant’s
experiences were positive or negative, based on a 7-point Likert
scale: represented with +++ (very positive); ++ (moderately
positive); + (slightly positive); 0 (neutral); (slightly negative);
−− (moderately negative); −−− (very negative). To quantify points
marked by the participants, the template was designed to have a
constant distance between the symbols: i.e., Very positive = 6 cm;
Moderately positive = 4 cm; Slightly positive = 2 cm; Neutral = 0;
Slightly negative = −2 cm; Moderately negative = −4 cm; Very
negative = −6 cm from the x-axis. The vertical distance in cm from
the x-axis to a marked point became the value for quantitative
analysis. The horizontal axis refers to the seven phases of product
usage based on the reference model. The participants subsequently
added a transparent paper layer onto the template and marked how
positive or negative they felt towards the product over time in
terms of each of the ve UX attributes.
The study was conducted individually at the Home Lab of UNIST,
following two steps: (1) lling in the questionnaire; and (2)
holding an interview. After a general introduction to the study’s
objective, the participants were walked through each of the
three parts of the questionnaire and guided to complete them.
Next, a semi-structured retrospective interview was carried out
by reviewing and referring to the participants’ answers to the
questionnaire. The purpose of this was to ensure that their answers
had been correctly given and to avoid the possible bias of the
researchers while interpreting the data.
Data Analysis
The main focus of the analysis was on identifying whether product
usage phases make differences in positive user experience and how
that occurs. From the rst part of the questionnaire, the products
reported by the participants were identied and categorised. In
Table 2. Participant distribution in terms of gender
and generation.
Gender Baby boomer
Generation X
Generation Y
(1982-1995) Total
Male 8 8 8 24
Female 8 8 9 25 90 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
the second part, cumulative data were obtained based on the
question in which a critical UX attribute (i.e., contributing most
to the positive experience with their product) was asked among
the ve attributes. The data were quantitatively analysed to obtain
an overview of the distribution of the ve attributes in their
roles of facilitating positive experiences. From the third part of
the questionnaire, the patterns of the positive experiences were
gathered by using mean values of each attribute in each phase of
the product usage life cycle. The same analysis was performed
for overall use experience. After this, to identify the interrelation
between overall user experience (hereafter, overall UX) and each
attribute, Spearman’s correlation analysis was conducted based on
the mean values of each phase. Gender and age data were used
to examine how the inuence of gender and generation affected
critical UX attributes. With the critical attributes, chi-square
tests were conducted to identify the difference between male and
female respondents and between generations.
Lastly, the mean values of overall UX and UX attributes
in the product usage life cycle were compared to determine how
gender and age make a difference. For gender, a Mann-Whitney
U test was used; for age, Spearman’s correlation analysis
was performed.
First, we report the products chosen by the participants. Next, we
describe how the ve UX attributes are distributed in the positive
experiences. Then, we report how the overall UX changes over
the product usage phase and how it is related to the ve UX
attributes. Finally, we describe the inuence of demographic
factors on positive experiences over the product usage life cycle.
Products and Distribution of the Five Attributes
in Positive Experiences
From the questionnaire, a total of 49 products were mentioned, one
for each participant. The products that the participants mentioned
were diverse, including smartphones, Bluetooth speakers, vintage
dishes, kitchen knives, sofas, coffee machines, fashion items such
as a backpack and a hat, cars, fountain pens, camping gear, novels,
soaps, disposable diapers, and services such as an online game and
a quick delivery service. The usage period of the products ranged
from one year (e.g., earphones, tumbler and golf ball) to ten years
(e.g., fountain pen, shaver and car). A Spearman’s Rank Order
correlation analysis was conducted to explore how the period of
usage is related to the ve UX attributes over the product usage
cycle. The result indicates that there is no statistically signicant
correlation between the usage period and the ve UX attributes.
During the love letter exercise, the participants explained
why they found their experiences with the products positive. One
respondent (P4), for example, described “I went out with you (a
pair of Nike shoes) when it rained, and you were soaked wet
that night I remember spending all night with you and a hair
dryer.” Considering their stories and detailed responses in relation
to the questionnaire, the love letter exercise appeared to sensitise
the participants effectively, helping them reect their positive
experiences with the products.
Among the ve UX attributes, instrumentality was most
frequently attributed to the positive experiences facilitated by
the chosen products (45%). This was followed by self-focused
identication (23%) and aesthetics (20%). Association and
relationship-focused identication were least mentioned: 8% and
4%, respectively.
Figure 3. An example of the questionnaire template: Assessing the user’s instrumental experience over the overall user experience. 91 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
J. Yoon, C. Kim, and R. Kang
General User Experience over the Product Usage
Cycle and Interplay with UX Attributes
The mean values of overall UX curves changed over the product
usage phases, as described in Table 3 and visualised in Figure 4. In
the phase before purchase, the mean value was lowest (M = 1.23).
Then, the value gradually increased until the phase familiarisation
with the product (M = 4.18). The level of the general UX curve
decreased until the disposal/repurchase phase (M = 2.74). All the
individual UX attributes tended to follow the pattern of the overall
UX except relationship-focused identication. In contrast to the
other attributes, relationship-focused identication was highest in
the phase of familiarisation.
The relationship between overall UX and individual UX
attributes was investigated using multiple linear regression. The
results indicated that there was a strong causality between the
levels of overall UX and the levels of individual UX attributes
throughout the product usage phases (see Table 4).
In the phase before purchase, the results of the regression
indicated that the model explained 71.6% of the variance. While
sensory experience (B = .31, p < .001) and self-focused identication
(B = .42, p < .001) contributed signicantly to the model, the
other attributes did not. However, at purchase, only self-focused
identication was a signicant predictor of overall user experience
(B = .64, p < .001) as the regression model explained 73.6% of the
variance. In the phase of unboxing, the regression model explained
Before purchase At purchase Unboxing First-time usage Familiarisation Use Disposal/Repurchase
Overall UX Aesthetics Instru ment ality Association Self-focused Relationship-focused
Figure 4. Trend of overall UX and ve UX attributes curves over the product usage phases.
Table 3. Descriptive statistics of overall UX and UX attributes over the usage phases.
Overall UX Aesthetics Instrumentality Association Self-focused
Before purchase 1.23 2.65 1.31 2.38 1.57 2.09 1.00 2.28 1.49 2.56 1.46 2.73
At purchase 2.36 2.41 1.69 2.19 2.28 1.90 1.95 2.12 1.97 2.52 2.04 2.63
Unboxing 3.08 2.38 2.18 2.68 2.98 1.98 2.18 2.14 2.55 2.43 2.24 2.74
First-time usage 3.05 2.08 2.10 3.17 3.39 2.08 2.12 2.30 2.80 2.13 2.46 2.62
Familiarisation 3.48 1.88 2.74 2.73 3.50 1.70 2.68 1.99 3.22 1.93 2.66 2.44
Use 4.18 1.50 3.59 2.15 3.57 1.89 3.01 2.13 3.46 1.94 2.50 2.67
Disposal/repurchase 2.74 2.71 2.01 2.83 2.73 2.56 2.53 2.39 3.09 2.26 2.00 2.72 92 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
77.7% of the variance and three UX attributes strongly inuenced
the overall UX level. Aesthetics showed the strongest causality
(B = .40, p < .001), while self-focused identication (B = .35,
p < .01) and association (B = .23, p < .01) showed a relatively
moderate contribution. During the phase of rst-time usage,
instrumentality showed the strongest causality with the overall UX
(B = .39, p < .01), followed by aesthetics (B = .24, p < .05). In
this phase, the results of the regression indicated that the model
explained 49.7% of the variance. The same trend was observed
during familiarisation as well as the use phase. In the phase of
familiarisation, instrumentality showed a strong causality with
the overall UX (B = .59, p < .001), while aesthetics moderately
contributed to the model (B = .25, p < .05). In the phase of use,
instrumentality (B = .50, p < .001) showed a stronger causality than
aesthetics (B = .36, p < .01). The results indicated that the model
explained 49.9% in the phase of familiarisation of the variance and
it was the lowest in the phase of use of the variance (29.3%). In
the phase of disposal/repurchase, only association was a signicant
contributor to overall user experience (B = .40, p < .01) as the
regression model explained 33.9% of the variance.
The overall results indicated that aesthetics and self-
focused identication highly inuenced overall positive user
experience from before purchase until unboxing in the product
usage life cycle. In contrast, instrumentality appeared to be the
most inuential in the latter phases of product use (i.e., rst-time
usage, familiarisation and use), while aesthetics played a moderate
role. Unlike the previous phases, association seemed to have an
inuence only in the phase of disposal/repurchase.
Inuence of Demographic Factors on Positive
Experience over the Product Usage Life Cycle
The proportion of males for each UX attribute was not signicantly
different from the proportion of females across the ve UX
attributes (see Figure 5). According to the chi-square tests, the
signicance value (.799) was larger than the alpha value of .05.
This suggests that the gender difference on appreciation of the ve
UX attributes was not statistically signicant.
Table 4. Results of multiple linear regression analyses of predictors of the overall UX.
UX attributes
Standardised Coefcients Beta
purchase At purchase Unboxing First-time usage Familiarisation Use Disposal/
Aesthetics .311** .119 .402*** .238* .249* .364** .132
Instrumentality .099 .101 .035 .393** .591*** .502*** .197
Association .123 .046 .229** .144 .108 .030 .397**
Self-focused identication .417** .640*** .346** .172 .167 -.131 -.155
Relationship-focused identication .101 .131 .147 .078 -.127 -.038 .277
R-squared .716 .736 .777 .497 .499 .293 .339
Note: 1. *p < .05; **p < .01; ***p < .001
2. Bold-typed numbers indicate strong contribution to the overall UX.
Aesthetics Instrumentality Assoc ia tio n Self-focused Rel ationship-focused
Ma le Female
Figure 5. Percentages of the critical UX attributes given between the male and the female group. 93 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
J. Yoon, C. Kim, and R. Kang
To explore the inuence of gender on positive experience
in different phases of product usage, a Mann-Whitney U test was
conducted. For the overall UX, there was a statistically signicant
difference in values for male (M = 1.57, SD = 2.32) and female
respondents (M = 3.12, SD = 2.29) in the purchase phase only
(p = .019). Female groups assigned a much higher value in
this phase than the male group (see Figure 6). In addition, the
inuence of gender was investigated for individual UX attributes
over the product usage phases. The results indicated that the
gender difference was identied with aesthetics, association and
self-focused identication.
The inuence of gender varied across the product usage
phases. For aesthetics, the inuence of gender was observed
only at the time of disposal/repurchase (p = .018). Male
participants (M = 3.47, SD = 2.42) gave higher values in the
phase of disposal/repurchase than female participants (M = 2.03,
SD = 2.55). Conversely, for the phases of purchase and unboxing,
female participants gave higher values for association than the
male group (female in purchase: M = 2.72, SD = 2.28 versus male
in purchase: M = 1.14, SD = 1.62; female in unboxing: M = 2.80,
SD = 2.00 versus male in unboxing: M = 1.54, SD = 2.13). The p
values of the purchase and unboxing phases were .012 and .032,
respectively. Concerning self-focused identication, the values of
female participants (M = 2.71, SD = 2.23) were higher than the
values of male participants (M = 1.20, SD = 2.61) in the purchase
phase (p = .033).
The results indicated that, in general, the female participants
were more positive towards their products before purchase. The
female participants’ appreciation of aesthetics decreased sharply
in the phase of disposal/repurchase. Throughout all the product
usage phases, female participants reported higher values in the
association and self-focused identication.
The distribution of the critical UX attributes in positive experience
showed that for the youngest group (i.e., generation Y), the extent
to which they appreciated the ve UX attributes was not noticeably
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Overall UX
Ma le Female
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Ma le Female
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Ma le Female
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Self -focused identification
Ma le Female
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Overall UX
Ma le Female
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Ma le Female
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Ma le Female
Bef ore p urc hase
At p urcha se
First-time usage
Famili arisatio n
Self -focused identification
Ma le Female
Figure 6. Gender differences for overall UX and UX attributes over the product usage life cycle. 94 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
different (see Figure 7). In contrast, instrumentality was highly
acknowledged in older age groups. However, the differences
among the three age groups (i.e., baby boomer, Generation X,
and Generation Y) were not statistically signicant. According to
chi-square tests, the signicance value (p = .470) was larger than
the alpha value of .05. Spearman’s correlation analysis revealed that
there were no strong correlations among the three age groups and the
ve UX attributes across the product usage phases (see Figure 8).
While most literature on user experience has focused on
understanding which aspects of products and users contribute
to negative experiences with the aim of mitigating them (e.g.,
Kim, 2014; Klein et al., 2002), the current study had the opposite
aim. The study explored which aspects of products and users
are associated with positive experiences and, more specically,
how the product usage life cycle interacts with positive user
experience and demographic factors, such as gender and age. Our
main nding is that positive user experience of products varies
according to product usage phases, but there is little difference
in terms of gender and age. In this section, we discuss the key
insights gained from the study in comparison with related
work. We also discuss the opportunities that the study results
may present to design practitioners in their efforts to design for
positive experiences. The results will also be discussed in relation
to studies that have explored how time and demographic factors
interact with user experience.
The Five UX Attributes in Positive User Experience
The results indicate that among the ve UX attributes,
instrumentality, self-focused identication, and aesthetics account
for approximately 90% of the reasons why people regarded their
Aesthetics Instrumentality Association Sel f- fo cus e d Relationship-focused
Baby bo om er Gen er at io n X G en er ation Y
Figure 7. Percentages of the critical UX attributes between generations.
Before purchase
At purchase
First-ti me usage
Familiari sation
Overall UX
Baby boomer Generation X Generation Y
Figure 8. Mean values of the overall UX between generations over the product usage life cycle. 95 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
J. Yoon, C. Kim, and R. Kang
products positively. Instrumentality accounted for almost half
of the reasons and it appears that the attribute plays a critical
role in facilitating positive experiences in product use: this is in
line with our previous studies (Kim, 2014 ; Kim, & Christiaans,
2016) in which the focus was on negative user experience and
instrumentality explained most of the complaints. A possible
explanation is that instrumentality or task-goal of consumers
(e.g., making a cup of orange juice with a blender) is learned
through experiences and is driven by the self-identied goals of
the consumer (Hoch, 2002). Therefore, instrumentality is more
likely to be dominant in positive user experiences. Huffman and
Houston (1993) also found that consumers’ memories improved
when the experience was organised around their goal. In other
words, the instrumental qualities of a product could be perceived
more easily by users through function-related goals.
It is interesting that both self-focused identication and
aesthetics were also often mentioned as reasons for a positive
experience. Concerning self-focused identication, this is most
likely a result of the characteristics of the experience and personal
values lasting a long time and not changing easily. In line with
Kim and Christiaans’ study (2012), the products that provided
positive experiences in the current study tended to be often and
repetitively used on a daily basis; high interaction density (i.e.,
products that are often and repeatedly used) strongly inuences
user experience. Similarly, Blom and Monk (2003) showed that
frequently used products are more likely to be personalised,
which lead to emotional attachment. Thus, this may explain why
aesthetics was often mentioned.
Association and relationship-focused identication were
found to contribute less to the overall evaluation of products
facilitating positive experience from a long-term perspective.
They tended to be brief over the product usage life cycle. That
being said, association and relationship-focused identication
are still essential for a positive experience that promotes users’
subjective well-being and personal identity: association allows
people to recall their personal experiences that are important
in their life (Philippe et al., 2012) and relationship-focused
identication strengthens social identity in a way that gives the
associated products the quality of having notable worth and
relevance for the user (Casais & Desmet, 2016). Overall, the ve
attributes were inclusive enough to represent the reported positive
experiences with products, which indicates the effectiveness
of using the ve attributes to describe positive experiences in
human–product interactions.
Changes of Overall User Experience over the
Product Usage Life Cycle
For the overall UX, it is noteworthy that self-focused identication is
the strongest contributor to the overall UX from Before purchasing
until Unboxing (see Table 4) and then the effect to the overall UX
decreases rapidly towards the phase of disposal/repurchase. Why
does a user’s overall experience already start in a positive state?
It is perhaps because, before purchase, the user already has some
expectations or has received recommendations related to the
product in terms of its property (e.g., I liked the form and colour of
the Nike shoes), brand (e.g., I was invited to the launch show and
liked the purse from the brand Dotween), type (e.g., I have always
been fond of a fountain pen), durability (e.g., I believed the bumper
of the car would be strong enough), or function (e.g., The balls from
Titleist perform better than the others). In the phase of purchase,
the positivity of the experiences increased. A possible explanation
is that a user is excited because he/she nally owns the product or
service (e.g., I nally owned it; I was so excited to have the new
one). In the phase of unboxing, it seems that the positive experience
at purchase lasts (e.g., I was also pleased to unbox because I already
purchased). In addition, unpacking inuenced the increase of the
value (e.g., The package was made of recyclable materials, which
I highly valued from a sustainability point of view). However, the
incremental increase slows down with rst-time usage. A general
explanation for this decrease could be a gap between expectations
and reality in terms of what the user may have expected from the
product and what the experience actually delivered. Some cases
showed that in actual use, a higher cognitive load was demanded
to learn how to use the product (e.g., It was challenging to gure
out how to change the Bluetooth setting) and the aesthetics (i.e.,
sensory experiences) were not as positive as expected.
The next overall positivity increases again in the phase
of familiarisation. This result may be because users feel more
comfortable as the products become integrated into their daily
lives (e.g., I can’t wear other shoes because these shoes became
very comfortable; My smartphone keeps my to-do list and
schedule well-organised; and The wallet has grown on me as the
leather ages). The increase in the use phase is maintained as in the
previous phase. It seems that users may have increasingly positive
experiences due to product familiarity or intimacy (e.g., It was
like my close friend) and durability (e.g., No breakdown and
very durable). Even in the case of breakdown, some participants
appreciated the quality of after-sales service (e.g., Their warranty
service was decent, so I am still satised with the product). After
long usage, the positivity of overall user experience drops rapidly
and, as a result, users nally dispose of their products or repurchase
them. A possible explanation for this is that the product is seen as
less able to full a function as expected (e.g., It is dented and its
function is impaired) or the expense to maintain the product is too
expensive (e.g., Better to buy a new one because the maintenance
cost was too much).
Considering the overall results, our research implies that
a user’s overall experiences are already positive even before
purchasing the products that they will use over a long period.
Although this initial experience of the product is formed, the
overall experience decreases while the user becomes acquainted
with the product. Once it is familiar to the user, attachment appears
to form and lasts during the remaining usage period of the product
with an incremental increase in overall experience.
Relation between Product Usage Phases and
UX Attributes
The results indicate that, until the phase of unboxing, all UX
attributes except instrumentality and relationship-focused
identication seem to contribute to the overall UX. However, from 96 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
then, only particular attributes are related to the users’ positive
experiences. During before purchase and purchase, appreciation
of the products to which people are attached is associated with
self-focused identication (e.g., I purchase organic food because
health is very important to me). This is likely to be a result of
personal value being a strong determinant of purchase intention
(Cronin et al., 2000; Kim & Chung, 2011). However, aesthetics
was observed as a contributor to the overall positive experience
at the phase of before purchase, not at purchase. This indicates
that aesthetic pleasure resulting from sensorial perception is
highly appreciated even before purchase and in many cases leads
to a purchase decision (Kim et al., 2016). At the unboxing phase,
self-focused identication is still important but aesthetics seems
to become the most inuential in the perception of overall UX.
Association also contributes to the overall UX (e.g., It reminded
me of the resourceful sales person while unboxing; There was a
letter of apology due to delayed delivery in the package; It was
my rst smartphone). In particular, association at this phase was
mostly about the events that had happened from before purchase
to unboxing.
From the moment in which a product is used for the
rst time, instrumentality becomes more critical, while the
aesthetics still affects the overall UX. After these phases (from
familiarisation to use), the same pattern is shown in relation to
the overall experience. In the phase of disposal/repurchase,
association shows a signicant contribution to the overall UX.
Once the user starts to use the product, instrumentality seems to
be the major contributor to the overall experience. Association
could explain why they still felt positive about the product in the
phase of disposal/repurchase.
On the basis of these patterns, we conclude that (1) the
critical attributes of positive user experiences differ to a large
extent according to the phase of product usage, and (2) it is
important for designers to consider the different patterns of the
UX attributes in different usage phases in generating positive
experiences. Our study showed that instrumentality and aesthetics
play a main role in positive experiences throughout product usage,
while the importance of the other attributes decreases after rst-
time usage, except for an increase in the importance of association
in the phase of disposal. The reason might be that instrumentality
is hard to depreciate due to the basic goal of owning and using
the products. This could also explain why people repurchase the
same product or service (i.e., when a product or service does not
function properly, people would not purchase it again). In one of
our previous studies (Kim, 2014), instrumentality was the major
reason for people’s dissatisfaction while using their products. This
implies that instrumentality plays a central role in both positive
and negative user experiences.
In the meantime, aesthetics serves as a strong contributor
to the overall UX from the early phases of the product usage
life cycle until getting used; it is highest at the moment when a
product is unpacked. In this phase, the sensory qualities (e.g., the
appearance and materials of a product) were most appreciated in
the interactions with the product. Although pleasure stimulated
by material qualities of a product does not last long (Roto
et al., 2011), given the fact that appreciation of a product’s
material qualities arises through frequent and repetitive daily
interactions, aesthetics appears to be important in generating
positive experiences throughout the entire product usage life
cycle. Self-focused identication is also an important contributor
to the overall positive experience, mainly in an early phase
of product usage. A possible explanation is that self-focused
identication expected from the product has already inuenced
the purchase intention before rst-time usage. Association is a
strong contributor to overall experience in the early phases as well
as in the phase of disposal/repurchase. The user’s memories or
prior experiences with a product seem to contribute to the overall
positive experience before rst-time usage. Association also plays
a role when users dispose of a product due to the memories that
have accumulated over the previous phases.
These ndings are contrary to previous studies, which
suggested that over time, the importance of familiarity, functional
dependency and emotional attachment increase sequentially in
the product usage life cycle (e.g., Karapanos, 2013; Karapanos
et al., 2010; Kujala et al., 2013; Mugge et al. 2005; Mugge et
al. 2008; von Wilamowitz-Moellendorff et al., 2006). The
present study conrms that instrumentality such as learnability,
usefulness and usability is considered important in the phase of
orientation and corporation; the product’s usefulness becomes
the major factor impacting our overall evaluative judgements in
the phase of incorporation. For aesthetics, however, the result
seems divergent; its contribution to positive experiences does
not taper off over time. This implies that aesthetics as a hedonic
dimension may still play an important role in the perceived
quality of the product, particularly with positive experience over
time. Unlike Hassenzahl (2003), who found that hedonics rather
than pragmatics drive bonding to a product (i.e., strong positive
relationship), the present study showed that both positive hedonic
and pragmatic experience are a strong predictor of long-term
positive experiences.
The current study indicates that self-focused identication
is critical in the purchase phase. Unlike the ndings of Karapanos
(2013), self-focused identication is not a signicant predictor
of increased positive experience from the phase of orientation.
Relationship-focused identication is also hardly considered
as a contributor in relation to the overall positive experience.
Considering the pleasure sparked by extrinsic motivation, e.g.,
safeguarding or exaggerating one’s social images by possessing or
consuming certain brands (Peters et al., 2018), relationship-focused
identication appears to be limited in generating long-lasting
positive experiences in our study.
These contrary ndings can possibly be attributed to
the product samples and the data collection method. While
the current study employed self-selected products delivering
positive experiences, Karapanos (2013) employed iPhone, a
novel consumer electronic product at the time of the study. The
study was conducted based on data collected during the four
weeks after purchase, adopting self-report techniques such as day
reconstruction and experience narration. Similarly, Fenko et al.
(2011) asked people to describe their sensory experiences with
different consumer products and rate the importance of different
sensory modalities during the rst year of usage. They found that 97 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
J. Yoon, C. Kim, and R. Kang
at the moment of purchase, vision is the most important modality,
but during usage over a month, the other sensory modalities such
as touch and sound gained more importance. After one year,
vision, touch and sound were found to be equally important. The
study suggested that designers need to give attention to the relative
importance of different sensory modalities that change over time.
These studies offer valuable insights into the underlying
aspects of design that contribute to positive experiences over time.
However, they tend to focus on particular product types (e.g.,
smartphone) or UX attributes (e.g., sensory modality) in isolation,
which limits providing a structured overview of the interplay
between user characteristics and UX attributes in facilitating
positive experiences over time. The present paper focused on
long-term positive experiences collected by means of recalled
memories structured by the UX curve method. In particular, each
of the ve individual UX attributes were holistically measured
over the seven phases of product usage life cycle, which
allowed us to systematically investigate determinants of positive
experiences over time.
Inuence of Demographic Factors across the
Five Attributes
There was no signicant gender difference in terms of the critical
UX attributes that explained why people regarded their experiences
with the products as positive. These ndings are in line with the
results of our previous study on the inuence of user characteristics
on negative user experience of consumer electronics (Kim &
Christiaans, 2016). This implies that gender difference would not
be a critical factor to be considered, particularly when it comes
to the major reasons for a product or service receiving a positive
user experience. Although age made no signicant difference,
we could identify an interesting pattern between generations.
The youngest generation (i.e., Generation Y) seems to consider
a broader range of reasons for nding their products positive
than the oldest generation (i.e., baby boomers). Instrumentality
explains the reasons for this, particularly for baby boomers, while
all ve attributes appear to be similarly distributed for Generation
Y. Baby boomers are more positive towards the functional aspects
of their products than Generation Y. Appreciation of association
was only observed by the younger generations. This could imply
that younger people are more inclined to take diverse experiences
into consideration while the old generation mainly pays attention
to what they can achieve through using a product.
Inuence of Demographic Factors over the
Product Usage Phases
When comparing positive experiences over the product usage
phases, some differences between genders were observed. In the
overall UX, the females’ mean value was higher than the males’
mean value in the phase of before purchase only. Females are
more sensitive to and expectant about what it will be like to own
or use the product before or at purchase (Maclnnis & Price, 1987).
Another possible explanation is that females may spend more
time and effort on searching than males, leading them to be aware
of advantageous aspects of the products (Bakewell & Mitchell,
2006; Denis & McCall, 2005). If that is the case, females, to a
greater extent, will appreciate products more prior to purchase.
Gender appears to inuence the ways in which people
appreciate different UX attributes in each of the product usage
phases. In the purchase phase, females perceive association
and self-focused identication as more important than males.
While a product is being used (i.e., from rst-time usage to use),
interestingly, there was no difference in the UX attributes between
males and females. This partly corresponds to the nding of our
previous study (Kim & Christiaans, 2016) in which gender had
no inuence on negative sensory and instrumental qualities
in product use. Besides, age seems to make little difference in
experiences over time in terms of overall UX. In addition, no
signicant difference appears across the product usage phases in
terms of the ve attributes.
Inuence of Product Characteristics: Hedonic
and Pragmatic Qualities
User experience is the outcome of the complex interplay of the
user, product and use context, and it changes over time (Merčun
& Žumer, 2016). We examined the effect of gender and generation
as user characteristics in positive user experience. However, in the
present study, the characteristics of product types and use context
were not taken into consideration because of the heterogeneity
of the product types chosen by the participants. Considering
the fact that user experience varies depending on the perception
of the product’s hedonic and pragmatic qualities (Hassenzahl,
2007; Hassenzahl et al., 2002), it would be interesting to see
the patterns of positive experience over time through the lens
of these two qualities. To gain a preliminary insight into the
inuence of pragmatic and hedonic characteristics over the
product usage cycle, we compared ten product types that were
representative of either pragmatic (ve products) or hedonic (ve
products). The selection of the product types was loosely based
on the categorisation of products (Jordan & Persson, 2007), which
reects the different needs and expectations people have towards
different types of products.
The products having a strong pragmatic quality were kitchen
appliances (e.g., blender), personal care appliances (e.g., electric
shaver) and stationary (e.g., pencil), whereas those with a strong
hedonic attribute were fashion-related products (e.g., designer
sneakers and fashion wristwatch) and services (e.g., online game, TV
media service and music streaming service). The mean values of both
the pragmatic and hedonic product group over product usage cycle
were compared by running a t-test analysis. Statistical differences
were identied between the two groups in instrumentality, aesthetics
and association over the usage life cycle. For the pragmatic product
group, the instrumentality of a product was more appreciated than
the hedonic group until purchasing the product. However, the
appreciation of instrumentality drastically dropped at the phase of
the unboxing and rst-time usage, then it incrementally increased
until the phase of use. In contrast, the appreciation of instrumentality
in the hedonic group incrementally increased although the overall
level was lower than the pragmatic group until purchasing the 98 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
product. We suppose that high expectations play an important role
in positive experience until before unboxing and rst-time usage.
Probably, pragmatic products are initially expected to function better
and be easier to use, while such instrumental qualities are not highly
expected in hedonic products.
For aesthetics, the hedonic product group showed a
surge until the rst-time usage while the experience fell after
the rst-time usage. Namely, positive sensory experience from
hedonic products lasts until the pleasure is experienced at the
very beginning of the usage. This observation could be explained
by the phenomenon of hedonic adaptation (Lyubomirsky, 2011),
which happens when users quickly become accustomed to
the pleasure elicited by the product and they eventually nd it
mundane. However, aesthetics in the pragmatic product group
was steady throughout the usage life cycle. This is probably
because aesthetics for the pragmatic product group was not mainly
considered critical from the beginning to the end of the usage
life cycle. In addition, appreciation of association incrementally
increased in the hedonic product group, while it was relatively
steady in the pragmatic product group during the usage period of
the product.
These ndings are in line with previous research showing
that both pragmatic and hedonic qualities contribute to the overall
positive experience of the product (Hassenzahl, 2001; Hassenzahl et
al., 2002) and the overshadowing effect of hedonic aspects over time
(Minge, 2008). The implications of the ndings are that different
design strategies need to be adopted according to the characteristics
of a product and users’ expectations in different phases of product
usage in order to augment and prolong positive experience.
Products that are more utilitarian in nature need more attention
paid to identication of instrumental expectations in the product
development process (i.e., functionality and usability). Meanwhile,
products characterised by the quality of hedonics require more
consideration on how to prolong or continue to stimulate sensory
experiences, such as appearance, sound, touch, for the long-term
and repetitive use of a product. Building on the preliminary ndings,
we aim to advance the understanding of the inuence of pragmatics
and hedonics in positive experiences by conducting an in-depth
study in more controlled settings in the future.
Inuence of Product Characteristics: Usage Period
As another variable representing product characteristics, the
period of usage was also taken into account to examine how it
makes a difference among the ve attributes across product usage
life cycle, particularly the relation to association in the sense that
time plays an essential role because the experience is based on
memories and episodes that are largely shaped by how long the
products were used. However, the result indicates that there is
no statistically signicant correlation between the period of the
usage and any of the UX attributes. This implies the period that
a product was used hardly affected the prominence of particular
UX attributes across the product usage life cycle. The result is in
line with the study by Mugge et al. (2005) on product attachment,
which showed that time is not an essential factor constituting
the attachment to a product. The results, however, need to be
interpreted with caution. They may have been affected by the
way the data were collected (i.e., self-report based on recalled
memories). Recollecting past experiences, people are most likely
to remember events that took place at the very beginning and that
have been recently experienced (i.e., the primacy and recency
effect; Baddeley & Hitch, 1993) and peak positive moments
(i.e., duration neglect; Fredrickson & Kahneman, 1993) in the
user–product relationship, regardless of the number of episodes.
Implications for Design Practice
The study ndings help us understand: (1) what attributes
are related to; and (2) how the product usage life cycle and
demographic factors interact with positive user experience. The
results can serve as a valuable reference for design professionals
in their endeavour to systematically generate positive experiences.
In general, our results show that positive user experience
is already formed ahead of purchase and incrementally
increases, whereupon it rapidly decreases towards the phase
of disposal/repurchase. Particular attributes are related to the
increase of positive user experience in each of the product usage
phases. Until purchasing a product, self-focused identication and
relationship-focused identication play a critical role in forming
a positive experience. Aesthetics is emphasised in the phase of
unboxing. From the rst-time usage, the main contributor to the
incremental increase in positive user experience is instrumentality.
Decreased positive user experience, especially in aesthetical and
instrumental aspects, leads to the disposal of a product.
Given the fact that instrumentality is a major contributor
to positive experiences, it seems to be essential to identify users’
instrumental needs and concerns in using the products in each
of the product usage phases and address them accordingly (e.g.,
addressing easy to open at the stage of unboxing). While being
less inuential than instrumentality, self-focused identication is
noteworthy, especially in envisioning users’ experiences in the
early phases of product usage (e.g., purchasing and unboxing).
Thus, it is worth enabling people to perceive that the experience
with a product coincides with users’ personal values or social
norm. For instance, what a product offers could be something
sustainable (e.g., using recyclable materials for packaging or
enabling people to use the product in a sustainable manner).
In the design literature, association and relationship-focused
identication have long been considered to add value to user
experience. Accordingly, several design strategies have been
proposed (e.g., Casais et al., 2015; Mugge et al., 2008). For
instance, how to use symbolic meaning of a product to inuence
users’ behaviours. The present study showed that the overall
contribution of association and relationship-focused identication
was relatively low and they were particularly appreciated before
and at purchases. Given the results, it would be more effective for
designers to apply those strategies to the design of the product and
other associated experiences in these two phases (e.g., packaging,
branding, and marketing).
The results indicate that the oldest generation highly
appreciates instrumentality throughout different stages of the
product usage life cycle, while younger generations do not 99 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
J. Yoon, C. Kim, and R. Kang
necessarily do so. This nding could help designers when age is
a key issue for the target user group, that is, younger people are
more inclined to take diverse experiences into consideration while
the old generation mainly give attention to what they can achieve
through using a product. For instance, in developing a product
targeted for the elderly (e.g., a smart home system to promote
their independent life), more attention has to be paid to anticipated
functions, easy to use and learnability while using the product.
Maintaining functional qualities of a product, personal values
and episodes that could be associated with the product need to be
taken into serious consideration in case younger people are the
main target user group.
Considering that instrumentality can contribute to
achieving behavioural goals, performing specic tasks with
efciency (e.g., setting a time with an alarm clock) can help
the user reach their behaviour goals (e.g., having punctuality by
arriving at work or appointments on time). For example, how well
a tness tracking device helps the user take care of their health
can be, to a large extent, inuenced by the instrumental quality of
the product. However, it is also important to note that a successful
implementation of instrumentality does not always guarantee the
fullment of behavioural goals. A superbly designed timer may
make the cooking process more efcient (i.e., instrumentality), yet
the timer on its own would not help the person make more creative
cooking recipes (i.e., behavioural goals). This implies that when
addressing the instrumental aspects of a product, designers should
consider how task-oriented and behaviour goals are related. Thus,
to better support instrumental experience, developing an in-depth
understanding of users’ needs and expectations in both levels (i.e.,
task and behavioural goals) is crucial.
In addition, the study results can be useful when developing
a product that is gender dependent. The study identies female
users as having a higher appreciation of their products than
male users before purchasing. Female users appear to have more
appreciation for self-focused identication and association until
unboxing. However, once the products start to be used, there is
no gender difference. These differences between genders could
be considered when envisioning the ways in which products are
communicated and used in the early phases of product use (e.g.,
as a means of marketing and product packages). In summary, the
ndings provide designers with a structured overview of positive
user experience through the lens of the phases of the product usage
life cycle and the inuence of user characteristics. The ndings
can serve as a source of inspiration and reference in holistically
addressing intended users’ needs and expectations in different
phases of product use.
Limitations and Future Studies
The paper provides insights into how the product usage life cycle
and demographic factors interact with positive user experience
through an empirical study. Nonetheless, it is not without
limitations. One limitation is that all the participants were from
South Korea. The concept of what makes us feel positive or happy
can vary from country to country and culture to culture. Research
has suggested that while personal feelings of pleasure are highly
valued in Western cultures, in some areas of Africa, they are more
about shared experiences within a community (e.g., family).
East Asian cultures tend to regard positive experiences as social
harmony (Hochschild, 1983). Concerning these cultural differences
in terms of the concept of positive experience, we acknowledge that
we should be cautious about generalising the ndings.
Another limitation is that the data collected from the
UX curve method were based on the participants’ recall of
positive experiences. The data might be limited in reecting
the participants’ actual experience vividly (e.g., subtle aesthetic
experience) because of the inevitable bias caused by the recalled
memory. According to Fredrickson and Kahneman (1993), our
recollection of pleasurable moments is reconstructed mainly
based on peak moments and endings, but the duration of the
pleasurable experience is minimally related to the overall
recollection. What matters most in a memory is whether the peak
moment and ending are good (Gilovich et al., 2015). This could
imply that some of the ndings would rest on the peak and ending
experience of each phase. Therefore, we invite additional studies
to utilise approaches that avoid or minimise memory biases (e.g.,
moment-to-moment data collection through experience sampling;
Hektner et al., 2007).
Lastly, we did not include product characteristics as one
of the assumed inuential factors in positive user experience
because of the intricacy of categorising them; with the emergence
of multifunctional products and the experience dependency on
use context, the boundary between categories has become blurry.
This may be a limitation of the study, considering that users tend
to have different expectations of different product types (Jordan
& Persson, 2007; Vink, 2005). In a future study, the inuence
of product characteristics such as product type including the
pragmatic/hedonic perspective should be considered.
Most studies in user experience have dealt with overall experience,
not paying close attention to different usage phases and user
characteristics. The current paper has shown that the positive
user experience is dependent on particular UX attributes over
the product usage life cycle. The study’s main contribution is the
overview of the inuence of the UX attributes in different usage
phases on positive user experience. The ndings can provide design
researchers and professionals with a developed understanding of
the formation of positive user experience that can be utilised in
further research and the product development process.
We would like to gratefully acknowledge the participants who
joined the study presented in the paper. Moreover, we would like to
thank the editor, the reviewers and particularly Henri Christiaans
and James Self for their constructive feedback on earlier versions
of this paper. This work was supported by the Ministry of Science
and ICT of the Republic of Korea and the National Research
Foundation of Korea (NRF-2019R1G1A1100779) and Cornell
University’s translational research and outreach fund. 100 International Journal of Design Vol. 14 No. 2 2020
Positive User Experience over Product Usage Life Cycle and the Inuence of Demographic Factors
1. Considering that product types (or categories) have become
harder and harder to dene, it seems that there is no denite
variable that can solely represent product types. Thus,
product types were not considered as a variable in the study.
2. The attributes were dened in a two-stage procedure. The
rst stage was to create a list of attributes of user experience
based on the literature in design research and HCI, and the
second was to cluster these into the ve attributes based on
their similarities (Kang et al., 2016).
3. In this paper, product represents a continuum of different
design solutions that encompass multiple manifestations and
scales—for example user interface, product, and service.
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... • Studying different kinds of interactions at different phases of use. Yoon, Kim, & Kang (2020) divided the interaction into seven phases: before purchase, during purchase, unboxing, first use, familiarisation, use, disposal or repurchase. The scholars have highlighted a substantial diversity in the positive experiences of users according to the phase of product use. ...
... Some scholars focus on the positivenegative distinction to understand which output should be used to improve a product within the design process. Therefore, positive and/or negative experiences have been extensively studied in the literature (Hassenzahl 2010;Kim 2012;Kim & Christiaans 2012;Fokkinga & Desmet 2013;Yoon, Pohlmeyer, & Desmet 2017;Fokkinga, Desmet, & Hekkert 2020;Yoon, Kim, & Kang 2020), even though scholars do not always agree on which of the two aspects of UX is the most useful in design. For example, Kim & Christiaans (2012) and Kim (2014) developed a framework focusing on an empirical cross-cultural study aimed at understanding which users' characteristics related to products can lead to users' negative experiences. ...
... This work is helpful in foreseeing unwanted negative experiences to avoid them. According to Yoon, Kim, & Kang (2020), it is better to seek the elements that arouse a positive experience, rather than just mitigating or avoiding unwanted ones. This view is strengthened by Hassenzahl (2010), who claims that eliminating suffering and frustrations caused by undesired features can improve a product but it does not ensure a positive experience. ...
Full-text available
User experience (UX) application in the practice of engineering and product design is still limited. The present paper provides insights into research on UX design and recommendations for design practitioners by pointing out common criticalities. These outcomes are achieved through a literature review on how UX relates to design. First, issues in benefitting from UX understanding in design are identified with a specific focus on theoretical contributions. Second, experimental papers investigating UX and design are analysed in relation to previously identified issues. Although issues are present to some extent in all the contributions, the empirical studies dealing with UX in design are overall valid. The results highlight UX’s support in revealing design requirements, but its capability of steering design processes is arguable, as concrete guidelines for practitioners are not well described. Based on identified issues, the authors propose a checklist to make UX studies in design more reliable and their outcomes more comparable.
... Further, our findings broadly support the work of other studies in design research linking age with positive experiences. For example, a recent study by Yoon et al. (2020a) on positive experiences and demographic factors showed that older users were more appreciative of their everyday technologies and reported higher satisfaction than younger users across all stages of a product lifecycle (i.e., from adoption to disposal). ...
... Technologies as an instrument showed the lowest levels in well-being. Karapanos (2013) and Yoon et al. (2020a) showed that instrumentality (i.e., how useful and efficient a technology is in achieving task-oriented goals) is critical in the early stages of a technology lifecycle. This differs from the findings presented here because our focus was on the contribution of technologies to long-term well-being (i.e., how much a technology contributes to one's happiness in life). ...
This paper investigates the effects of experiencing diverse positive emotions in technology use on users' well-being, referred to as positive emodiversity. We examined technology's role in facilitating positive emodiversity and well-being through a questionnaire study (N=116; 580 example cases), in which three sources of emotions were considered: technology as an object, instrument, or enabler. Further, we evaluated how technology-supported hedonic and eudaimonic pursuits are associated with well-being. A regression analysis showed that increased positive emodiversity leads to increased well-being (p<.001). The effect was predicted by the three sources and both hedonic and eudaimonic pursuits. When engaged in positive activities enabled by technology, users experienced more diverse positive emotions, increasing their well-being. The study offers new understandings of the relationships between technologies, emodiversity, and well-being, and provides evidence that designing for a wide diversity of positive emotions, as opposed to generalized pleasure-displeasure distinction, can enrich users' experiences, enhancing their well-being.
... Desmet proposed the concept of positive design based on the research on subjective well-being, which is, that aimed to design to bring experiences that are both pleasurable and have a long-term positive impact on individual development during a person's interaction with a product or service [7]. Moreover, researchers have developed several frameworks and approaches to facilitate positive experiences [8][9][10]. However, it is important to note that these research are too widely applied, which means that there should be different product categories based on different design intentions [11], such as the factors affecting positive user experience in a workspace being different from a leisure space; medical products being different from household products; and educational systems being different from e-commerce systems. ...
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Although the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT) technology has benefited the progress of social life, the relentless pursuit of technological advancement cannot definitely lead to a sustainable increase in customer pleasure and happiness. During the design phase, happiness is often overlooked. Therefore, the objectives of this study are as follows: (1) to provide a comprehensive overview of the importance of sustainable happiness for the IoT product design and to propose 15 positive experience design strategies that can improve user happiness; and (2) to apply the 15 design strategies to the IoT product design practice and validate whether they can effectively guide the designers’ work. The research procedure consisted of four steps. First, qualitative data for developing the design strategies was collected through bibliometrics and expert interviews. Second, the propositions of the design strategies were reviewed, analyzed, and constructed using the qualitative research software program NVivo 20. Third, two researchers categorized the 15 strategy concepts into the four directions of positive experience design approaches for the IoT products. Fourth, we conducted a two-week design workshop to validate the feasibility of the design strategies. The results indicate that the 15 design strategies can effectively guide designers to create ideas that prioritize user well-being and allow for creative exploration in various directions. This paper enriches the IoT product design methodology, which can enhance the users’ sustainable pleasure, future goal achievement fulfillment, and social relationship well-being in the IoT era.
... Utility dalam hal ini yang berkaitan dengan apakah suatu aplikasi dapat memberikan fungsionalitas, layanan dan fitur yang sesuai dengan kebutuhan pengguna, namun perubahan tersebut juga tidak terlepas dari lamanya waktu penggunaan serta pemahaman pengguna pada aplikasi. Hal tersebut selaras dengan penelitian sebelumnya yang menyatakan bahwa meskipun terbentuknya pengalaman pengguna saat pengguna berkenalan dengan produk secara keseluruhan terlihat kurang, namun setelah akrab maka memungkinkan untuk membentuk pengalaman pengguna yang meningkat dan mampu bertahan sampai selesai periode penggunaan produk (Yoon, et al., 2020). ...
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p> Aplikasi investasi merupakan salah satu jenis pengembangan platform digital yang dipicu oleh teknologi. Bibit dan Ajaib adalah dua platform yang mendominasi industri aplikasi investasi reksa dana di Indonesia. Dalam persaingan platform digital, penting untuk memahami performa aplikasi, salah satunya dari pengalaman pengguna. Penelitian ini membandingkan perubahan pengalaman pengguna pada aplikasi Bibit dan Ajaib. Metode UX Curve yang digunakan pada penelitian ini adalah metode yang sering dipakai untuk mendapatkan pengalaman pengguna jangka panjang. Responden dalam penelitian ini terdiri dari sepuluh orang pada kelompok Bibit dan sepuluh orang pada kelompok Ajaib. Setiap responden yang terlibat diberikan template UX Curve dengan lima perspektif: general UX, attractiveness, ease of use, utility, dan degree of usage . Penelitian ini telah menghasilkan 50 kurva dan 186 alasan dari kelompok Bibit, sedangkan dari kelompok Ajaib menghasilkan 50 kurva dan 191 alasan. Hasil analisis perbandingan dari kedua aplikasi investasi berdasarkan arah kecenderungan kurva dan alasan responden membuktikan bahwa Ajaib memberikan pengalaman pengguna yang lebih baik dibandingkan Bibit. Berdasarkan kurva general UX di awal penggunaan Ajaib memiliki persepsi yang cukup positif dari pada Bibit. Kemudian seiring berjalannya waktu Ajaib digambarkan terus mengalami peningkatan sedangkan Bibit cenderung stabil. Arah kurva improving yang paling banyak pada Bibit adalah attractiveness, sedangkan Ajaib adalah general UX dan ease of use. Adanya pergerakan arah kurva tersebut, didukung oleh alasan yang berasal dari pengalaman positif dan negatif responden. Alasan yang paling banyak disampaikan oleh responden untuk kedua aplikasi investasi tersebut adalah alasan yang terdapat pada aspek utility dari kategori pragmatis. Abstract Investment applications are one type of digital platform development triggered by technology. Bibit and Ajaib are the two platforms that dominate the mutual fund investing application industry in Indonesia. In a competitive digital platform, it is important to understand the application's performance, one of which is the user experience. This research compares changes in user experience on the Bibit and Ajaib apps. The UX Curve method applied in this research is a popular method for getting a long-term user experience. Respondents in this research included ten people in the Bibit group and ten people in the Ajaib group. Each respondent involved was given a UX Curve template with five perspectives: general UX, attractiveness, ease of use, utility, and degree of usage. This research has produced 50 curves and 186 reasons from the Bibit group, while the Ajaib group produced 50 curves and 191 reasons. The results of the comparative analysis of the two investment applications based on the direction of the trend curve and the respondents' reasons prove that Ajaib provides a better user experience than Bibit. Based on the general UX curve at the beginning of use, Ajaib has a fairly positive perception of Bibit. Then, over time, Ajaib is described as continuing to increase while Bibit tends to be stable. The direction of the improving curve in Bibit is attractiveness, while Ajaib is general UX and ease of use. There is a movement in the curve's direction, which is supported by reasons derived from respondents' positive and negative experiences. The reasons that most respondents conveyed for the two investment applications were the reasons contained in the utility aspect of the pragmatic category. </p
... The consideration of demographic aspects as a satisfier of product use has been scarcely integrated as a variable to consider, consequently, globalization requires universally accepted designs. Some studies aim to integrate design variables and consumer preferences with information on attitudes and demographics [8], space design [9], or product life cycle [10]. The dedication to designing positive experiences has been explored by various authors from academia and technology centers [11,12,13], addressing emotional, sensory and functional variables associated with the purchase decision, usability, acceptance of new materials and its integration in certain products and environments [14,15]. ...
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This document reveals the results of a study carried out on forty-six Design and Innovation Master's students from Portugal and Chile, to discover the possible influence of demographic factors on the perception of emerging materials designed with household solid waste. The creation and application of new materials that contribute to the ecological transition are necessary and are being increasingly demanded by the manufacturing industry, which needs to communicate more environmentally friendly solutions to its customers. The objective of the study is to determine the influence of demographic factors on user acceptance of emerging materials made from household solid waste. The methodology considered the collection of information, through a self-applied questionnaire, with structured questions with semantic differential and Likert scale, adopting five attributes: ecological, cozy, attractive, luxurious, comfortable. Three prototypes designed based on eggshells, orange peel, and cardboard boxes in 300 x 300 millimeter sheet format were studied. The results indicate that the attributes perceived in each of the prototypes of new materials present significant differences in terms of the valuations associated with their perception. The conclusions are referred to the implications of demographic factors for the practice of design, whose knowledge can help the creative process, for a positive user experience.
... In such an emerging context, users build up their expectations on perceived issues and benefits of the said technology, rather than their non-existent to minimal real-life experience with it. It can be anticipated that VAs can be purchased by an increasing number of households in such an emerging context in the near future; yet, this may not result in positive user experiences (Yoon, Kim, and Kang 2020) and hence sustainable adoption. Thus, understanding households' expectations in emerging markets based on anticipated use will be valuable to react sooner, for which studies in the mature markets and/or about general and individual VA use may not be entirely guiding. ...
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Virtual Assistants (VAs) are at the forefront of state-of-the-art interactions for smart technologies at home. The prospective users’ prior to use perception of such assistants is crucial to discover new possibilities for design and to be able to elicit positive user experiences. However, this has not been investigated in detail within family life in emerging contexts though demand for their ownership increases. This study scrutinises potential users’ initial perceptions about the prospective and anticipated uses of VAs within family life in Turkey, as an emerging context, through in-depth interviews with 15 families. During the interviews, the participant families watched publicly available videos of four different VAs to elicit their perceptions. Results reveal that prospective users’ perceptions and expectations focus heavily on VAs’ possible effects on the family well-being, besides the concerns about usability and issues related to privacy, safety, and security. While proposing VAs for home use in such an emerging market, their potential positive effects on the family well-being should be promoted whereas perceived negative effects should be resolved by considering smartness, personality and trust dimensions. The study reveals relationships between these dimensions and perceptions of and expectations about VA use in home context in an emerging market.
... The emotional aspects of product design are of interest. Positive user experience can promote product attachment across the product usage life cycle, such as recollecting nostalgic and peak positive moments in the user-product relationship (Yoon et al., 2020). In this way, a more positive emotional attachment between the user and product corresponds to a longer product life. ...
This scoping study aims to investigate the circularity design tools implemented in the electrical and electronics industry, identify related business cases, and analyze noteworthy design characteristics. Numerous circularity-related keywords are extracted from 17 tools by following the selection criteria. A total of 11 main characteristics and 47 sub-characteristics are identified based on four implementation scenes, including business model innovation, product design, service design, and supply chain management. Service-led approach in business model innovation, societal and emotional aspects in product design, service design during use, and collaborative distribution and logistics in supply chain management are key characteristics that must be considered to achieve a high level of circularity. Applying advanced digital technologies in servitization can enhance product performance and overcome circularity challenges in the industry. Moreover, a method for measuring the circularity performance of a product from the societal and emotional perspectives and its associated services is yet to be developed. Future studies should further investigate how qualitative circularity indicators can pragmatically be applied, improve stakeholder and community engagement, and increase academic–industry collaboration when innovating a circularity design and assessment tool.
... Ceschin and Gaziulusoy [29] carried out a comprehensive study on the response of the design discipline to sustainability issues; these authors cite diverse approaches that are increasingly focused on both the integrated combination of products and services and promoting new socio-technical systems in which not only technological advances, but also social and organizational innovations, are developed. Other authors also point out that designers have an opportunity to influence the development of socially responsible products [30], that design can influence the more sustainable behavior of the users [31], and that sustainability can be one of the factors that influence the positive perception of the product or service ahead of purchase [32]. ...
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Product and service development based on sustainable criteria is one of the poles of innovation in design activity. Public policies, consumer preferences, and corporate social responsibility lead to the growing importance of applying sustainability principles in the current design process. However, to make this practice widespread, sustainability assessment must be included in the curricula of bachelor’s and master’s degrees in design, so that the graduates have the precise tools to use when they start their professional careers. Furthermore, sustainable design methods have mainly been applied to improve only the environmental behavior of products. In this work, a methodology that simultaneously evaluates environmental, economic, and social aspects was applied to project more sustainable designs of products and services. This approach was implemented in higher education to develop Bachelor’s and Master’s degree final projects by design engineering students. Collaboration with different companies and institutions allowed the study of a number of cases. The production process of a cash management machine, the service provided by a public nursery school, and the development of an itinerary exhibition were addressed. In each case, product and service requirements were analyzed, sustainability indicators were obtained, and more sustainable designs could be proposed. This experience is also part of a global strategy at the University of Zaragoza to support the implementation of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, enhancing sustainability education. The intention of this paper is to present a methodology for more sustainable design, and examples of its application that other teachers can easily follow when teaching design of products or services.
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The goal of a wellbeing-driven approach to technology design is to improve peoples' everyday lives by providing enjoyable and meaningful experiences. While models and frameworks to disentangle the complex interplay between wellbeing and technology exist, most of these remain rather abstract. What seems required are methods and tools to support designers/developers with identifying concrete opportunities to improve wellbeing through design. This paper introduces the Positive Practice Canvas (PPC) as such a tool. The PPC is an interview guide and notepad to gather instances of especially enjoyable and meaningful practices. We introduce our particular approach to wellbeing-driven design, describe and discuss the PPC as well as resulting insights in detail.
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Experience categories describe repeatedly occurring qualities of positive experiences that can be used for the analysis and generation of new/further/more positive experiences. This paper describes experience categories for the workplace. Based on 345 reports of positive user experiences in the workplace, we identified 17 experience categories through qualitative content analysis and describe their necessary and optional attributes. We believe that experience categories can support analysis and design activities for the work place in three ways: (a) using the questions derived from experience interviews to analyze existing positive experiences in work contexts, (b) explaining the potential of positive experiences in work contexts as a formal analysis tool, and (c) showing the ways in which experience categories can inform the design of software concepts to foster/generate positive user experience. The experience category approach is thus a more actionable addition to other, mainly theory-driven, approaches.
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Research in psychology has shown that both motivation and wellbeing are contingent on the satisfaction of certain psychological needs. Yet, despite a long-standing pursuit in human-computer interaction (HCI) for design strategies that foster sustained engagement, behavior change and wellbeing, the basic psychological needs shown to mediate these outcomes are rarely taken into account. This is possibly due to the lack of a clear model to explain these needs in the context of HCI. Herein we introduce such a model: Motivation, Engagement and Thriving in User Experience (METUX). The model provides a framework grounded in psychological research that can allow HCI researchers and practitioners to form actionable insights with respect to how technology designs support or undermine basic psychological needs, thereby increasing motivation and engagement, and ultimately, improving user wellbeing. We propose that in order to address wellbeing, psychological needs must be considered within five different spheres of analysis including: at the point of technology adoption, during interaction with the interface, as a result of engagement with technology-specific tasks, as part of the technology-supported behavior, and as part of an individual's life overall. These five spheres of experience sit within a sixth, society, which encompasses both direct and collateral effects of technology use as well as non-user experiences. We build this model based on existing evidence for basic psychological need satisfaction, including evidence within the context of the workplace, computer games, and health. We extend and hone these ideas to provide practical advice for designers along with real world examples of how to apply the model to design practice.
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Recent research suggests that psychological needs such as competence and relatedness are involved in users' experience with technology and are related to the perception of a product's hedonic and pragmatic quality. This line of research, however, predominately focuses on positive leisure experiences, and it is unclear whether need fulfillment plays a similar role in negative experiences or in other activity domains such as work. Therefore, this study investigates need fulfillment in positive and negative experiences, and in work and leisure experiences in two separate studies by analyzing almost 600 users' experiences with technology along with ratings on need fulfillment, affect, and perceived product quality. Results suggest that work and leisure experiences as well as positive and negative experiences differ in terms of need fulfillment. Hence, both activity domain and valence of experiences are important factors that should be taken in account when modeling user experience. ACM Reference Format: Alexandre N. Tuch, Paul van Schaik, and Kasper Hornbaek. 2016. Leisure and work, good and bad: The role of activity domain and valence in modeling user experience.
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Material possessions with happiness-related symbolic meanings can provide a contribution to subjective well-being (happiness), because they remind owners of memories, achievements, or aspirations. Such possessions provide an anchor for personally meaningful narratives, help in the construction and communication of self-identity, represent personal values and achievements, etc. Capturing this richness in a design process is challenging, because meaning is person and context-dependent, and the effects on happiness are subjective. In order to provide inspiration for designers to create products predisposed to symbolic meaning attribution, six happiness-related symbolic meanings were identified. Based on those, 16 design directions were developed. To communicate the six symbolic meanings and the 16 design directions, a toolkit for designers was created, composed of a deck of cards and a website. This paper serves as an introduction to a workshop where the toolkit is applied, and it explains the process and the rationale behind the card set and website that make up the toolkit.
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Background: Pride is one of the most meaningful experiences in daily life. Many psychological studies emphasize self-oriented and event-based achievements as the main sources of pride, whereas work from organizational management considers pride as a collective attitude derived from other-focused activities and fostered by the sense of belongingness. Taking the interdisciplinary aspects of pride into account, this article addresses the challenge of how experience design can contribute to pride experience in the workplace. Methods: By cross-cutting theories from psychology and organizational management, this study introduces a framework of dynamic pride. The data includes 20 experience design cases that were specifically devoted to positive experiences in the context of the metal and engineering industry. 33 pride-related experience design goals were analyzed and categorized into the framework of pride. Results: This study introduces the social and temporal dimensions of pride experience at work. The pride-related experience design goals fall into four categories: self-focused short-term pride, self-focused long-term pride, other-focused short-term pride, and other-focused long-term pride. Accordingly, the extracted design strategies of these goals were mapped to each type of pride. Most of these design strategies were clustered in the categories of self-focused short-term pride and other-focused long-term pride. Conclusions: This study reveals the design strategies for dynamics of pride in the workplace varying from evoking self-achievement in individual interactions with tools to maintaining long-term motivation of self-competence development, and from highlighting one's contribution in face-to-face collaborative work facilitated by interactive tools to fostering co-experience of organizational pride throughout social events.
User-centred design and co-design are nowadays prevalent in product design. However, the number of product returns in consumer electronic industry is continuously increasing. Most complaints are not technical in nature but have to do with non-technical or ‘soft’ problems. Our study investigates these problems with electronic devices in relation to design properties, characteristics of users and their follow-up (re)actions. The results show that people massively complain about a large variety of products, from computers to e-book readers, and from washing machines to vacuum cleaners. Soft problems are the outcome of the interaction between user characteristics and design properties. Whether users take action upon their complaints also depend on their background. The results have to be translated into a design language.
Everyday life is defined and characterised by the rise, transformation and fall of social practices. Using terminology that is both accessible and sophisticated, this essential book guides the reader through a multi-level analysis of this dynamic. In working through core propositions about social practices and how they change the book is clear and accessible; real world examples, including the history of car driving, the emergence of frozen food, and the fate of hula hooping, bring abstract concepts to life and firmly ground them in empirical case-studies and new research. Demonstrating the relevance of social theory for public policy problems, the authors show that the everyday is the basis of social transformation addressing questions such as:how do practices emerge, exist and die?what are the elements from which practices are made?how do practices recruit practitioners?how are elements, practices and the links between them generated, renewed and reproduced? Precise, relevant and persuasive this book will inspire students and researchers from across the social sciences.