September 1, 2013 Columns

App-titude: ASHA's Online Community Goes Mobile

As mobile devices become de rigueur for social connection, ASHA jumps in with a new app to help you connect more easily to the online community.

ASHA CommunityWhen your alarm goes off, what's the first thing you do? Brush your teeth? Kiss your spouse? Make a cup of coffee? Nope. More than likely, that morning breath lingers until you check your e-mail, post a status update and check on breaking news on your social networks—all from your phone. In fact, within 15 minutes of waking up, four out of five smartphone users are checking their device, according to recent data from an IDC research report on social media and smartphone use.

At nearly all points in a day, we're using our smartphones, from daily commutes to the waiting room at the doctor's office to the couch in front of the TV. And, in comparison with the considerable Web browsing we do on our personal computers, on mobile devices we spend most of our time (80 percent) in applications, or apps. That means we spend two hours and seven minutes each day using mobile apps—but who's counting?

Given these trends, it's not surprising that many ASHA members connect with colleagues on mobile devices. Of the more than 62,000 ASHA members interacting in the online ASHA Community, more than 5,000 access it from mobile devices. We search for, find and connect with colleagues using the community directory. We also read and reply to existing discussions and start new discussion threads. Many of us regularly read daily digests of discussions through a smartphone's e-mail client or log into the ASHA Community through a mobile browser.

But so far we haven't been able to do these things in an easier-to-navigate, streamlined way through an app. Wouldn't it be great if we could save our fingers from pinch-to-zoom maneuvers to contribute to a discussion or find a colleague? Wouldn't it be terrific if we could ask a question or browse the community discussions in between clients, patients and students or during a rather long, drawn-out meeting or fire drill?

Well, now we can.

ASHA's new Community Mobile App, just launched last month, makes it possible to post questions and connect with colleagues in just a few clicks, without all of the time-consuming zooming and maneuvering.

The free app is available for download from the Apple and Android app stores. Once it's on your device, log in and you'll see your name at the top of the navigation. Under your profile, you will see Discussions, People, Inbox, Announcements and a list of communities to which you subscribe. Now that you're oriented, here's what you can do:

  • Read all the latest discussions from your subscriptions in a single feed, instead of reading a daily digest for each discussion to which you're subscribed.
  • Search for colleagues in the directory and seamlessly add them to your personal contacts list.
  • With a couple of taps, conveniently send an e-mail or make a phone call to another ASHA member.
  • Find the latest ASHA news from Twitter and the ASHAsphere blog directly in the app.

Visit the mobile access instruction page to learn more about how you can spend more of those 127 daily mobile minutes connecting with colleagues via ASHA's new mobile app. If you have app-related questions, e-mail community@asha.org.

Jill Straniero, is ASHA's online collaboration manager. jstraniero@asha.org

cite as: Straniero, J. (2013, September 01). App-titude: ASHA's Online Community Goes Mobile. The ASHA Leader.

  

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