People are increasingly using mobile video to communicate, collaborate, and share experiences while on the go. Yet this presents challenges in adequately sharing camera views with remote users. In this paper, we study the use of semi-autonomous drones for video conferencing, where an outdoor user (using a smartphone) is connected to a desktop user who can explore the environment from the drone's perspective. We describe findings from a study where pairs collaborated to complete shared navigation and search tasks. We illustrate the benefits of providing the desktop user with a view that is elevated, manipulable, and decoupled from the outdoor user. In addition, we articulate how participants overcame challenges in communicating environmental information and navigational cues, negotiated control of the view, and used the drone as a tool for sharing experiences. This provides a new way of thinking about mobile video conferencing where cameras that are decoupled from both users play an integral role in communication, collaboration, and sharing experiences.
Brennan Jones, Kody Dillman, Richard Tang, Anthony Tang, Ehud Sharlin, Lora Oehlberg, Carman Neustaedter, Scott Bateman. Elevating Communication, Collaboration, and Shared Experiences in Mobile Video through Drones. In Proceedings of the ACM on Designing Interactive Systems Conference (DIS '16). ACM, New York, NY, USA Page: 1-13. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/2901790.2901847