Data collection methods and devices have changed over the years. Research facilities often compare historical to newly obtained data sets however, the question remains; can data be compared when different data collection devices were used? This study determined that descriptive analysis test results are comparable across three different devices, an iPod, an iPad and a computer monitor. Descriptive analysis of 4 snack bar products by 12 trained assessors using 20 attributes was conducted on 3 devices. Four-way univariate analysis of variance indicated no significant difference in 19 of 20 attributes for product*device interactions. All the products were ranked in a similar manner for attribute intensities on all devices. The monitor differs significantly from the iPad and iPod in device effect in 18 of the 20 attributes. The source of the difference might turn out to be the stylus used for data recording rather than the screen size; further research is required to evaluate the effect of using a stylus. No significant difference was found between the iPad and the iPod, but average scale level largely followed a trend in which higher scale responses were obtained, on average, for smaller screens. GPA multivariate configuration (Fig.1) showed very similar arrangements for all products and all devices. Thus a lab that switches from one device type to another can expect to obtain data that leads to similar conclusions.
Fisher, C. M., King, S. K., Castura, J. C., & Findlay, C. J. (2015). Does a change in data capture device affect sensory descriptive analysis results? In: 11th Pangborn Sensory Science Symposium. 23-27 August. Gothenburg, Sweden.