The Importance Of Personalized Apps

A south korean study from 2019, administered a large survey in which they attempted to measure how people felt about apps that are personalized.

Personalization was defined by the researchers as "the ability to provide personalized service and information tailored to individuals’ preferences, location and needs". In other words - a personalized service treats you like an individual rather than just one of several customers.

Previous research has established that personalization is something people obviously enjoy. But in order to personalize a service, the part providing the service needs information to be disclosed. Thus, privacy becomes an issue.

To support their study, they investigated their results by taking account of two theories relating to personalized services. Firstly - Privacy Calculus Theory predicts that people weigh the costs of privacy against the utility of the service, to make a decision regarding wether to disclose information or not. And secondly - the Technology Acceptance Model predicts that the two main variables for using a technological service is ease of interaction, and perceived utility.

With this in mind, the researchers hypothesized that personalized technology would be correlated both to increased perceived benefits, and risks - compared to non-personalized technologies.They also thought that personalized apps that were therefore easy to use, and perceived as highly useful, would therefore be more likely to get engagement from users and thereby override privacy-concerns. Of course, trust should also likely be positively correlated with engagement.

In their results, they did find that the positive benefits of personalization outweighed the negative perceived costs of personalization. Interestingly, trust in an application, could also be partly explained primarily by its ease of interaction and to a lesser degree by its perceived usefulness. And trust was also significantly correlated to continued use of a service.

So, to summarize, personalized technological services are something users enjoy, and a good way to increase trust in them is to make them as easy to navigate in as possible, whilst still providing tangible usefulness to the user.



Jee-Won Kang, Young Namkung, (2019) "The role of personalization on continuance intention in food service mobile apps: A privacy calculus perspective", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 31 Issue: 2, pp.734-752

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