Happyinu: Exploring how to use games and extrinsic rewards for consistent food tracking behavior

Edith Talina Luhanga, Akpa Akpro Elder Hippocrate, Hirohiko Suwa, Yutaka Arakawa, Keiichi Yasumoto

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Consistent food tracking is important for weight loss. Many people struggle with forming and maintaining the habit because it is time consuming and generally un-enjoyable. We describe the design and initial field evaluation of HappyInu, a virtual pet-care game that we developed to promote consistent food tracking. HappyInu uses daily notifications to remind users to track, provides photo-based food tracking to make the process simpler and gives virtual and cash rewards for motivation. In our pilot study, users were excited about the game-based approach and they wanted more in-game tasks and rewards to be offered. Intrinsic rewards were more motivating than cash, particularly pleasure (fun) and the need to contribute to something meaningful. However, users played HappyInu on a casual (non-daily) basis, just as they did with other smartphone games. In this paper, we discuss users' perceptions on the role of games for behavior change and the implications on game design.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2016 9th International Conference on Mobile Computing and Ubiquitous Networking, ICMU 2016
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)9784907626303
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 10 2016
Externally publishedYes
Event9th International Conference on Mobile Computing and Ubiquitous Networking, ICMU 2016 - Kaiserslautern, Germany
Duration: Oct 4 2016Oct 6 2016

Publication series

Name2016 9th International Conference on Mobile Computing and Ubiquitous Networking, ICMU 2016

Other

Other9th International Conference on Mobile Computing and Ubiquitous Networking, ICMU 2016
Country/TerritoryGermany
CityKaiserslautern
Period10/4/1610/6/16

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications

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