In May 2016, the AUToMAte (Automated Usability Testing of Mobile Applications) project, funded by the Austria Research Promotion Agency (FFG), has been finished successfully. The primary goal of the project was the development of an automated procedure for conducting usability tests on mobile platforms. To evaluate how users are interacting with an app, developers can either run time-consuming and expensive user studies, or they can automatically track and analyse interaction data. A main result of the project was the development of a system for tracking and analysing mobile device usage. General concepts were developed which can be applied for different platforms. Because of the wide distribution and openness of the mobile operation system Android, the first implementation has been realized for Android.

Parts of the implementation have been published as open source project named automate toolkit under the GNU General Public License (GPL) version 3 (or later). It is hosted on GitHub and contains everything needed for tracking mobile device usage and context information on Android phones. The automate toolkit app, available via Google Play, provides an easy and customizable way to track the usage of arbitrary applications on Android. The tracked data is stored locally in CSV files, which can be processed further e.g. in statistical software lie R. The automate toolkit is the perfect tool for supporting user studies or other tracking tasks on Android phones.

For more details and general information on how to use and extend the automate toolkit, please visit the project’s GitHub page.




Dustin Steiner, Christian Grossauer, Clemens Holzmann
Department of Mobile Computing, University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria, Austria
{dustin.steiner, christian.grossauer, clemens.holzmann} [at]

Former Researchers

Andreas Guetz, Patrick Hutflesz, Florian Lettner
Department of Mobile Computing, University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria, Austria