Background Many smartphone users experience stress from receiving notifications all of the time. More than half of smartphone notifications come from messengers. This study attempts to understand the users’ stress from receiving smartphone messenger notifications, and determines the stressors. Also, this study identifies and validates notification design considerations to reduce stress from smartphone messengers.
Methods First, an online survey was conducted with 95 smartphone user participants who used the same messenger application. Second, we extracted notification design considerations based on repeated affinity analysis of the keywords from the survey data. Third, the considerations were validated through two in-situ experiments during four weeks each.
Result Six stressors were founded in three categories from the survey data. From this understanding, three design considerations for the notification system in smartphone messengers were proposed, in which the user can still be effectively aware of his or her notifications but can also reduce stress in his or her life. We validated two considerations through two experiments, and we found that the three design considerations are complementary.
Conclusion This study suggests three design considerations for developing smartphone messenger notification system. The results can expand in two directions. First is to expand the general notifications in the smartphone, including the messenger. Another method is to expand the general stress of the messenger, including notification stress.