52% of Iberto American museum plan to develop an app between 2013 and 2015. Meanwhile, 41% do not have any such plans and the remaining 7% already have one. This is the main result of the “Apps in Museums and Cultural Centers in Iberto America” survey (spanish), commissioned by GVAM. This is in sharp contrast with the Anglo-Saxon world: indeed, 50% of UK museums already have a Smartphone application according to the Museum Association. For the formulation of this study the three basic phases of a mobile project have been taken into account: planning, development and analysis of results. A total of 110 museums have made this possible. For them, a big thank you!
Paying particular attention to the characteristics of these apps has been one of the main objectives of the survey, as the complexity or simplicity of these greatly affects the overall number of centres that adopt it. Also, in a social and technological environment that is ideal for inclusion and targetization, it is interesting to find out how much attention is being paid to accessibility and the adaptation of digital content for people with disabilities. All this in a booming market like the Ibero-American one.
Characteristics of Ibero-American museum Apps: A vast majority opts for multimedia apps, namely 70 % of the Ibero-American museums. 16% of the total would develop, failing that, an app similar to the museum website. This perception fits with the current agendas of these centers; however, most of them understand that this information should be supplemented with other resources like social networking interaction buttons (up to 56.9% believe this should be a priority service), QR codes (41.5 %) or positioning systems (33.8 %). This is below the percentage who views content sales (13.8 %) or the sale of tickets in their app (10.8%) as a priority. Meanwhile, 92 % were willing to include accessibility resources (subtitling, audio description, sign language videos, etc.) if funding were available, taking also into account those who would make their app accessible regardless of external support.
Recipients of these new developments: Most museums in Ibero-America plan to aim their app to the general public (46.2%). People familiar with the technology (15.4%) and persons with disabilities (15.4%) are their second target. Finally, it is important to note that, although the volume of museum apps in the market remains low, the percentage of centres that is aware of user satisfaction is minimal: only 10% have done some sort of study, 20 % know at least the rate of downloads and the remaining 70% have not followed up on their app after it is published.
Download the full study here http://www.gvam.es/encuestas/apps_museos_iberoamerica_2013.pdf and please feel free to share your impressions with us!