Should Public Displays be Interactive? Evaluating the Impact of Interactivity on Audience Engagement

Mettina Veenstra, Niels Wouters, Marije Kanis, Stephan Brandenburg, Kevin te Raa, Bart Wigger , Andrew Vande Moere

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)
194 Downloads (Pure)


This paper describes a comparative case study that aims to uncover the quantifiable differences between non-interactive and interactive public displays in the urban
environment. The study involved a large temporary
interactive public display on a central city square showing a selection of custom-made content. We have evaluated the effect on passers-by and spectators in two conditions: 1) non-interactive (2102 passers-by, 228 viewers), by showing a content loop, and 2) interactive (1676 passers-by, 257 viewers), by adding physical pushbuttons for content selection and gaming. We discuss the influence of noninteractive and interactive public displays on: 1) attracting attention, 2) engaging people, 3) improving social dynamics within and among groups of viewers, and 4) catering for the suitable time of day. Based on our observations, we provide quantitative support for the hypothesis that interactive displays are more successful than non-interactive displays to engage viewers, and to make city centers more lively and attractive.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPervasive displays
Subtitle of host publicationthe 4th International Symposium on Pervasive Displays, proceedings, Saarbrücken, Germany, June 10-12, 2015
EditorsSven Gehring, Antonio Krüger
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9781450336086
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Event4th ACM International Symposium on Pervasive Displays - Saarbrücken, Germany
Duration: 10 Jun 201512 Jun 2015


Conference4th ACM International Symposium on Pervasive Displays


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