To examine the acceptability and feasibility of using smartphone technology to assess beverage intake and evaluate whether the feasibility of smartphone use is greater among key sub-populations.
An acceptability and feasibility study of recording the video dietary record, the acceptability of the ecological momentary assessment (EMA), wearing smartphones and whether the videos helped participants recall intake after a cross-over validation study.
Rural and urban area in Shanghai, China.
Healthy adults (n 110) aged 20–40 years old.
Most participants reported that the phone was acceptable in most aspects, including that videos were easy to use (70 %), helped with recalls (77 %), EMA reminders helped them record intake (75 %) and apps were easy to understand (85 %). However, 49 % of the participants reported that they had trouble remembering to take videos of the beverages before consumption or 46 % felt embarrassed taking videos in front of others. Moreover, 72 % reported that the EMA reminders affected their consumption. When assessing overall acceptability of using smartphones, 72 % of the participants were favourable responders. There were no statistically significant differences in overall acceptability for overweight v. normal-weight participants or for rural v. urban residents. However, we did find that the overall acceptability was higher for males (81 %) than females (61 %, P=0·017).
Our study did not find smartphone technology helped with dietary assessments in a Chinese population. However, simpler approaches, such as using photographs instead of videos, may be more feasible for enhancing 24 h dietary recalls.