Physicality As an Anchor for Coordination: Examining Collocated Collaboration in Physical and Mobile Augmented Reality Settings

Lev Poretski Poretski, Joel Lanir, Ram Margalit, Ofer Arazy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Design and co-creation activities around 3D artifacts often require close collocated coordination between multiple users. Augmented reality (AR) technology can support collocated work enabling users to flexibly work with digital objects while still being able to use the physical space for
coordination. With most of current research focusing on remote AR collaboration, less is known about collocated collaboration in AR, particularly in relation to interpersonal dynamics between the collocated collaborators. Our study aims at understanding how shared augmented reality facilitated
by mobile devices (mobile augmented reality or MAR) affects collocated users' coordination. We compare the coordination behaviors that emerged in a MAR setting with those in a comparable fully physical setting by simulating the same task – co-creation of a 3D artifact. Our results demonstrate the importance of the shared physical dimension for participants' ability to coordinate
in the context of collaborative co-creation. Namely, participants working in a fully physical setting were better able to leverage the work artifact itself for their coordination needs, working in a mode that we term artifact-oriented coordination. Conversely, participants collaborating around an AR
artifact leveraged the shared physical workspace for their coordination needs, working in what we refer to as space-oriented coordination. We discuss implications for a AR-based collaboration and propose directions for designers of AR tools.
Original languageEnglish
Article number470
Number of pages20
JournalProceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction
Issue numberCSCW2
StatePublished - 6 Aug 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 ACM.


  • collaboration
  • collaborative co-creation
  • coordination
  • mobile augmented reality
  • mutual awareness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Networks and Communications


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