Open source smartphone app and tools for measuring, quantifying, and visualizing technology use.

Kristoffer Geyer, David Ellis, Heather Shaw, Brit Davidson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (SciVal)


Psychological science has spent many years attempting to understand the impact of new technology on people and society. However, the frequent use of self-report methods to quantify patterns of usage struggle to capture subtle nuances of human–computer interaction. This has become particularly problematic for devices like smartphones that are used frequently and for a variety of purposes. While commercial apps can provide an element of objectivity, these are ‘closed’ and cannot be adapted to deliver a researcher-focused ‘open’ platform that allows for straightforward replication. Therefore, we have developed an Android app that provides accurate, highly detailed, and customizable accounts of smartphone usage without compromising participants’ privacy. Further recommendations and code are provided to assist with data analysis. All source code, materials, and data are freely available (see links in supplementary materials section).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalBehavior Research Methods
Issue number1
Early online date3 Jun 2021
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2022


We thank Ben Marshall for comments on an earlier version of this manuscript


  • Digital traces
  • Mobile software
  • Screen time
  • Smartphones
  • Technology use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology (miscellaneous)
  • General Psychology


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