Providing patients opportunities for self-management and education about their disease, asthma applications designed for use on an Android operating system can have positive health outcomes across the range of demographics who use mHealth applications. This study provides a content analysis of freely available Google Android Platform Mobile Applications for Asthma. A list of applications was collected on 26 October 2014, using the search feature of the Google Play Android platform and using the words and phrases "Asthma," "Lung Function" and "Peak Flow." Each application was coded for its approach to asthma self-management, based on categories adapted by Huckvale et al.which are based on the Global Initiative for Asthma and the National Asthma Education and Prevention Program. The characteristics of the 15 asthma applications are described. Most of the asthma applications' primary function focused on patient self-monitoring and self-assessment. Using the HON Code, we found low health information quality across all asthma applications. Android asthma applications can have positive outcomes in helping patients as they provide opportunities for self-management and education about their disease. Future research should continue to monitor and evaluate the development and use of mHealth Asthma Applications. Based on these findings, and their indication of a gap in existing research, subsequent studies can continue to evaluate the development and use of mHealth Asthma Applications with increasing methodological consistency to improve the quality of in-app health information.
- content analysis