Watching Movies on Netflix: Investigating the Effect of Screen Size on Viewer Immersion

in MobileHCI, Conference proceeding, Florence, Italy


Film and television content is moving out of the living room
and onto mobile devices - viewers are now watching when
and where it suits them, on devices of differing sizes. This
freedom is convenient, but could lead to differing experi-
ences across devices. Larger screens are often believed to
be favourable, e.g. to watch films or sporting events. This is
partially supported in the literature, which shows that larger
screens lead to greater presence and more intense physio-
logical responses. However, a more broadly-defined mea-
sure of experience, such as that of immersion from com-
puter games research, has not been studied. In this study,
19 participants watched content on three different screens
and reported their immersion level via questionnaire. Re-
sults showed that the 4.5-inch phone screen elicited lower
immersion scores when compared to the 13-inch laptop and
30-inch monitor, but there was no difference when compar-
ing the two larger screens. This suggests that very small
screens lead to reduced immersion, but after a certain size
the effect is less pronounced.