Baby wearable technologies are becoming increasingly popular, particularly in early infancy. However, little research has been conducted to investigate how baby wearable technologies are adopted and used in parenting. Our two-week in-depth situated study with six mothers in their homes consisted of contextual entry and exit interviews, video recordings of ‘out-of-box’ experiences, and a diary study. Using interpretative phenomenological analysis, participants’ use and expectations of the baby wearable technology were examined. Use of the device directly impacted upon parents’ knowledge production and anxiety and influenced the perceived physicality and social factors of parenting. We framed these findings around sociological norms of the vulnerable child and responsible mother, as well as the notion of ‘lived informatics’, where individuals’ interaction with the technology influenced the perception, use and impact of the baby wearable on everyday parenting practices and familial relationships.
Our work was published at CSCW, a top-tier human-computer venue, and was covered by the Guardian newspaper online.
Wang, J., O’Kane, A. A., Newhouse, N., Sethu-Jones, G. R., & de Barbaro, K. (2017). Quantified baby: parenting and the use of a baby wearable in the wild. Proceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction 1, CSCW.