Volume 14, Number 2

An Evaluation of the use of Audio Guidance in Augmented Reality Systems
Implemented at Sites of Cultural Heritage


Benjamin Wilson, Joshua Hull and Damian Schofield, State University of New York, USA


Recently, museums and historic sites have begun reaching out beyond their traditional audience groups, using more innovative digital display technology to find and attract a new audience. Virtual, mixed, and Augmented Reality (AR) technologies are becoming more ubiquitous in our society and “virtual history” exhibits are starting to be available to the public. There are numerous studies focusing on AR, however a scant amount of research is being done at historical sites. An initial experiment used repeated measures (ANOVA) to compare and rank three different types of AR devices used at a site of cultural heritage. A further experiment was then undertaken to observe participants using two different AR devices with and without sound to determine if which device used or the presence of sound impact the usability of the device, or the user’s satisfaction/preference of specific devices. Several surveys, including demographic and usability surveys, were provided in order to collect a range of user data. A two-way repeated measures (ANOVA) were used to analyze the quantitative data gathered. No significant effects were observed based on the quantitative data provided by the surveys, indicating that all devices were equally usable and satisfactory, and that sound did not have a significant impact in this instance. However, the qualitative data indicated that users may prefer using AR technology on a smartphone device and preferred to use this device paired with sound.


Augmented Reality, Audio Guide, Cultural Heritage, Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Usability.