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Comparison of user interfaces for measuring the matrix sentence test on a smartphone

Samira SaakAngelika KotheMareike BuhlBirger Kollmeier
Jan 2024
Using smartphones for mobile self-testing could provide easy access to speech intelligibility testing for a large proportion of the world population. The matrix sentence test (MST) is an ideal candidate in this context, as it is a repeatable and accurate speech test currently available in 20 languages. In clinical practice, an experimenter uses professional audiological equipment and supervises the MST, which is infeasible for smartphone-based self-testing. Therefore, it is crucial to investigate the feasibility of self-conducting the MST on a smartphone, given its restricted screen size. We compared the traditional closed matrix user interface, displaying all 50 words of the MST in a 10x5 matrix, and three alternative, newly-developed interfaces (slide, type, wheel) regarding SRT consistency, user preference, and completion time, across younger normal hearing (N=15) and older hearing impaired participants (N=14). The slide interface is most suitable for mobile implementation. While the traditional matrix interface works well for most participants, not every participant could perform the task with this interface. The newly-introduced slide interface could serve as a plausible alternative on the small screen of a smartphone. This might be more attractive for elderly patients that may exhibit more tactile and visual impairments than our test subjects employed here.
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