Taking mhealth forward: Examining the core characteristics

Teaniese Latham Davis, Ralph Diclemente, Michael Prietula

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The emergence of mobile health (mHealth) offers unique and varied opportunities to address some of the most difficult problems of health. Some of the most promising and active efforts of mHealth involve the engagement of mobile phone technology. As this technology has spread and as this technology is still evolving, we begin a conversation about the core characteristics of mHealth relevant to any mobile phone platform. We assert that the relevance of these characteristics to mHealth will endure as the technology advances, so an understanding of these characteristics is essential to the design, implementation, and adoption of mHealth-based solutions. The core characteristics we discuss are (1) the penetration or adoption into populations, (2) the availability and form of apps, (3) the availability and form of wireless broadband access to the Internet, and (4) the tethering of the device to individuals. These collectively act to both enable and constrain the provision of population health in general, as well as personalized and precision individual health in particular.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere97
JournalJMIR mHealth and uHealth
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016


  • EHealth
  • Health policy
  • Health technology
  • MHealth
  • Mobile health
  • Public health informatics
  • Telehealth
  • Text messaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics


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