BACKGROUND: The number of mobile apps that support smoking cessation is growing, indicating the potential of the mobile phone as a means to support cessation. Knowledge about the potential end users for cessation apps results in suggestions to target potential user groups in a dissemination strategy, leading to a possible increase in the satisfaction and adherence of cessation apps.
OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to characterize potential end users for a specific mobile health (mHealth) smoking cessation app.
METHODS: A quantitative study was conducted among 955 Dutch smokers and ex-smokers. The respondents were primarily recruited from addiction care facilities and hospitals through Web-based media via websites and forums. The respondents were surveyed on their demographics, smoking behavior, and personal innovativeness. The intention to use and the attitude toward a cessation app were determined on a 5-point Likert scale. To study the association between the characteristics and intention to use and attitude, univariate and multivariate ordinal logistic regression analyses were performed.
RESULTS: The multivariate ordinal logistic regression showed that the number of previous quit attempts (odds ratio [OR] 4.1, 95% CI 2.4-7.0, and OR 3.5, 95% CI 2.0-5.9) and the score on the Fagerstrom Test of Nicotine Dependence (OR 0.8, 95% CI 0.8-0.9, and OR 0.8, 95% CI 0.8-0.9) positively correlates with the intention to use a cessation app and the attitude toward cessation apps, respectively. Personal innovativeness also positively correlates with the intention to use (OR 0.3, 95% CI 0.2-0.4) and the attitude towards (OR 0.2, 95% CI 0.1-0.4) a cessation app. No associations between demographics and the intention to use or the attitude toward using a cessation app were observed.
CONCLUSIONS: This study is among the first to show that demographic characteristics such as age and level of education are not associated with the intention to use and the attitude toward using a cessation app when characteristics related specifically to the app, such as nicotine dependency and the number of quit attempts, are present in a multivariate regression model. This study shows that the use of mHealth apps depends on characteristics related to the content of the app rather than general user characteristics.