IPFS on mobile presents a unique set of challenges with mobile use and expectations from users. Much of this seems to stem from a high standard of usability and maturity of cloud service syncing platforms as well as well as their ubiquity. However, there is a lot of opportunity in addressing user’s desires for better methods of files sharing and the addressing their frustrations with its management and an increasing interest in privacy and security issues.

Cloud Services and Syncing

  • Cloud services like Dropbox and applications like AirDrop are considered the gold standard for file sharing
  • Cloud services are thought of as stable and dependable, but they are also questioned in terms of their intents and longevity
  • Being able to manage files and structure is important to the user and cloud services may not reflect this
  • Various types of media, such as photos, videos and audio files are used extensively on mobile devices but how they are shared varies widely
  • File security and backup is very important, but less so is who has the final file
  • Cloud services like Google products are easy to use but not necessarily trusted
  • Notifications about syncing and status are seen as very important
  • P2P was used extensively in terms of torrents but generally not recently

P2P usability and awareness

  • P2P technologies such as IPFS have had a difficult time in mass user adoption
  • Users might know of P2P but don't want to be aware that they are using it
  • P2P is understood as a concept relatively easily but there is some difficulty in imagining actively using it
  • The user should know what is going on and notifications should be just enough and not overwhelming
  • Battery and signal strength are important only generally when lacking
  • Battery life is not as important as it used to be
  • Offline-first is a trend that is important but difficult to push forward to mass adoption

Security and identity

  • Identity and its management is understood to be important but is generally thought of as difficult and so many times ignored, even for advanced users
  • There is a general awareness of privacy, but its understanding and application are understood differently in different parts of the world
  • Single Sign On is viewed as a good thing but how to manage it securely is not a simple thing