Mato, P. J., Keegan, T. T. A. G., & Naera, L. (2016). How usable is a smartphone with a Māori-language interface? MAI Journal: A New Zealand Journal of Indigenous Scholarship, 5(1), 17–32. https://doi.org/10.20507/MAIJournal.2016.5.1.2
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/11001
Major languages dominate contemporary technologies. For Mäori, there is opportunity to engage with some technologies using their language and to participate within Mäori- language communities in various digital media. A smartphone launched by Two Degrees Mobile Limited provides a Mäori- language interface option. An initial pilot study indicated users will engage with this interface, but when pushed for time will switch the interface to the English- language option. This paper reports on a study undertaken to test the usability of the smartphone Mäorilanguage interface. Participants reported diffi culties and some frustration as they struggled with new words and unfamiliar uses of words. They also expressed disappointment at poor translations and arbitrary truncations. The feedback highlights perceived shortcomings encountered when technologies that are normally developed and used in a major language are translated for use in minority Indigenous languages. Mäori-language strategies that consider using translated application interfaces should be cognisant of such issues.
This article is published in the MAI Journal: A New Zealand Journal of Indigenous Scholarship. Used with permission.