Usability of Online Streaming Services

An eye tracking study on user interactions with Amazon Video and Netflix

Project Overview


Desktop Website

Group Members:

Daniel Duncan & Juliette Seive


Tobii TX300 eye tracker, iMotions eye tracking software

Project Type:


My Role: 

User Researcher

Project Duration:

In Progress

Research Question

"​How do users interact with video streaming services when discovering new content and when looking for specific content?"​

The Study...


Our project is in part motivated by the shift from broadcast television to internet streaming services. We will focus specifically on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video as both services utilize different ways of presenting video content - visually and textually, respectively. The project will follow a twofold approach:

  1. Have the users follow a series of tasks for selecting specific video content

  2. Have users browse content of their own interest to observe users more naturalistic behaviors

We will be using eye tracking technology to gain quantitative insights into how users navigate both of these streaming services. Additionally, we will be collecting qualitative data from users by using the think aloud protocol and administering post-task and post-test questionnaires. Through both the qualitative and quantitative data, we hope to better understand how users navigate content, how they make final selections on content, and user preferences for browsing videos on streaming sites - visually or textually.


During this study, we will have users complete three tasks using both platforms:

  1. Find a specific movie title

  2. Find a title in a specific genre 

  3. Freely browse to find a content of interest to the user

After each task we will administer a post-task questionnaire and we will be administering a post-test questionnaire at the end of the study session. These questionnaires will give us more qualitative data, such as ease of use, enjoyability, platform preferences and their decision making process. 


We will be utilizing a screener question in our recruitment process to recruit a diverse user population and gather information we will use in our study. In our screener we will be looking to accomplish the following goals:

  • Recruit users who do not need corrective eye glasses to use a desktop computer (because this can cause difficulty with the eye tracking hardware)

  • Recruit users with various experiences, frequencies and confidence levels using online streaming services

  • Learn more about the user's preference for movie genres to control for user bias during tasks

This study will be conducted in the Information Experience Lab at the University of Texas at Austin School of Information


This study will be conducted in the Information Experience Lab at the University of Texas at Austin School of Information

... To be continued.

This project is currently in progress. Reach out to me for more details and a progress update.

© 2020 | Katie Hicks