PhD Seminar

Computer Science
Cryptography, Security, and Privacy (CrySP) Group

Tuesday, 19 December 2017 at 2:00PM

DC 2314

Measuring the Usage Patterns of Users with Multiple Devices

Erinn Atwater

David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science

The prevalence of multiple computing devices owned by individuals is growing steadily, from explicit computing devices like laptops and smartphones to Internet of Things devices ranging from sneakers to refrigerators. One recent study found that 37% of American households own at least three devices: a laptop, a smartphone, and a tablet. With this ever-growing number of devices comes an ever-growing need for protocols that enable easy cooperation for tasks like synchronizing files, simplifying authentication, and managing identities across these devices.

While there has been research into the creation and performance of these protocols, as well as how users interact with individual devices, we still lack an understanding of the usage patterns of typical users with multiple devices. For example, a peer-to-peer file synchronization protocol is not useful if the user's devices are never powered on and connected simultaneously. Our study profiles how real-world users switch between devices, what their connectivity looks like, and what their network mobility patterns are.