Quantified Baby: Parenting and the Use of a Baby Wearable in the Wild

Junqing Wang, Aisling Ann O'Kane, Nikki Newhouse, Geraint Rhys Sethu-Jones, Kaya de Barbaro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)
1081 Downloads (Pure)


Baby wearable technologies are becoming increasingly popular, particularly in early infancy. However, little research has been conducted to investigate how baby wearable technologies are adopted and used in parenting. This paper presents a two-week in-depth situated study with six mothers in their homes consisting of contextual entry and exit interviews, video recordings of ‘out-of-box’ experiences, and a diary study. Using interpretative phenomenological analysis, participants’ use and expectations of the baby wearable technology were examined. Use of the device directly impacted upon parents’ knowledge production and anxiety, and influenced the perceived physicality and social factors of parenting. We frame these findings around sociological norms of the vulnerable child and responsible mother, as well as the notion of ‘lived informatics,’, where individuals’ interaction with the technology influenced the perception, use and impact of the baby wearable on everyday parenting practices and familial relationships.
Original languageEnglish
Article number108
Number of pages19
JournalProceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction
Issue numberCSCW
Publication statusPublished - 6 Dec 2017

Structured keywords

  • Digital Health


  • Parenting
  • mothers
  • baby
  • baby monitors
  • wearables
  • personal informatics
  • in the wild
  • Quantified self
  • situated study
  • CSCW
  • HCI
  • Digital Health


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