Mobile Accessibility of Virtual Worlds: The Second Life Experience

Paul Jerry, Nancy Tavares-Jones

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The use of tablet computers and smart phones in the global mobile technology market has expanded in the past several years. Many schools continue to adopt tablets in classroom use and smartphone market penetration is nearing 60% in developed countries. Childs once commented that the floundering in the acceptance of virtual worlds is due to their missing the mobile revolution, and that to survive as an educational technology, any application, including virtual worlds, must scale to mobility. In this exploratory study, we examine the current state of accessibility and user experience when accessing the virtual world of Second Life (SL) on tablets and smartphones. The intent of this study is two-fold. First, it is a mapping of the available mobile devices and viewers for accessing SL. Second, it provides a framework for assessing key features of usability including in-world activity, in-world communication, and an evaluation of the key components of immersion in the virtual space. Implications for educators are discussed in the context of considering the current state of the art in mobility and virtual world experience. Direction for further research is also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAt the Edge of the Rift
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781848883215
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan. 2019


  • Second Life
  • Virtual Worlds
  • immersion
  • mobile
  • smart phone
  • tablet
  • technology


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