Tech for boomers and seniors -- price right, partner often

Pricing matters -- and for senior-housing sales, it's unrealistic.  Looking forward today to the Boomer Venture Summit event here in California, where the sun is shining and the San Jose airport is filled with signs of tech this, enterprise that. But I have also heard this week about stalled deployments of tech projects in the non-profit senior housing sector due to low occupancy, confirmed in this May 28 investor report. >>> Read more . . .

AARP: baby boomers are not comfortable with the Internet -- really?

Glass half full -- or half empty? Surprise! This new AARP study about Social Media and the Internet overrides previous assumptions about the 50-64 age range and comfort level with the Internet. Let's count just 40% of boomers as a fit with that description:17% indicate they are extremely comfortable and 23% are very comfortable.  Only 26% access the Internet via a laptop and only 4% through smart phones or cell phones -- 57% use a desktop computer. Only 27% are using social media sites like Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter -- dominated by Facebook. >>> Read more . . .

New and notable tech offerings, GCMs and Skype

Last month I mentioned three new caregiving applications that entered the market recently -- this month, a summary list of other interesting products that have entered the market in recent (roughly the past 6) months, presented in alphabetical order. A number of products are expected to announce in the next few months -- expect another post when there's at least six more. >>> Read more . . .

Alzheimer's and caregivers educational event -- no tech, low tech

Big conference, lots of empathy and caring.  It's been a while since I attended an event exclusively focused on Alzheimer's -- I wondered if the curiosity about technology potential I encounter at so many other events would be duplicated. The 2010 Alzheimer's Educational Conference in West Palm Beach kicked off yesterday -- attended by professionals and caregivers, exhibit hall filled with senior housing offers (dementia units, respite), hospice and home care agencies, educational programs, local resellers, elder law services, and research programs. The two morning keynotes typified the tone and the theme: Dr. Thomas Kodadek of the Scripps Research Institute talked in great molecular detail about a 'promising' new test for Alzheimer's, and Dr. Louis Benson gave an exhausting and lengthy speech about how to sustain your positive energy in the face of caregiving stress. >>> Read more . . .

The '65+' survey conundrum

Lots of detail about the under-65 crowd.  We are a society so consumed by age bracketing and labels, you'd think there was enough data to meet all the needs of marketers. We have Generation X and Y/Millennials ("What, me worry?"), or Young, Middle, and Older Boomers.  We know whether they love their iPhone or their BlackBerry, and whether they signal the end of voice calling capability because texting is the beginning, the middle, and the end of their cell phone use. And today's WSJ helped us understand that a 35-year-old could have the arteries of an 80-year-old. >>> Read more . . .

Mobility and PERS, boomers and shifting expectations

Another week, this time a look at the future of healthy aging. Yesterday kicked off the first of a two-year Think Tank initiative sponsored by Philips through its Center for Health and Well-Being. The purpose of this Think Tank is to consider and flesh out ideas about what it means globally to age successfully -- with implications about future requirements for policy, health systems, and technology use. >>> Read more . . .

Aging in Place Technology Watch May 2010 Newsletter

Older Americans -- so lucky to have their own month.  And the merry month of May has been as hyped up as any: judging by the 4.6 million items that popped up with a Google Search ("Older Americans Month May 2010"). From a Presidential proclamation to an AoA standardized template for creating your own community version, we can rejoice that so much attention has been paid to encouraging us to honor those 60 and older to "Age Strong! Live Long!" But you heard me, 60 and older! On the one hand, it is a good thing every day to find a way to honor the frailest and most isolated -- not just for a month. But beginning at age 60?

>>> Read more . . .

Feedback from and about ATA (American Telehealth Association) event in San Antonio

At my request, one of the attendees at ATA, Mark VanderWerf, founder of AMD Telemedicine and a prior board member of ATA, sent me this commentary on the recent San Antonio event. Further attendee comments are invited.

From Mark VanderWerf, now with Telehealth Advisors (Received May 24 2010). >>> Read more . . .

What iPad means for boomer and senior markets

Looking back to January -- the spectacular iPad success confounds skeptics.  It is always entertaining to look back at product reviewers and skeptic comments from way back, that is, end of January 2010, when the iPad launched and howls of pundit dismay -- even the WSJ's resident Apple swooner Walter Mossberg had reservations!!! -- were heard across the land. I particularly enjoy a re-read of this nasty CNET review that declared it to be a big disappointment. However, he and others at the time thought it might appeal to baby boomers. Of course, Apple will not tell anyone the age mix of buyers. But since baby boomers generally aren't divided into sub-segments, and the overall segment spends more money than various other generations, that wasn't tough. >>> Read more . . .

Empower the user -- product design assumptions for boomers and seniors

Socially and personally, information access empowers.  BCS (once known as the British Computer Society) published an interesting report this month called "The Information Dividend: Can IT Make You Happier?" This study of 35,000 examines the relationship between access to information and the means of getting it with responders' life satisfaction. It concludes that IT has a positive impact on life satisfaction for all levels of income and other factors that are typically used to determine well-being. And the study, according to the authors, demonstrates that access to information and technology "extends the sense of freedom/control which improves well-being." Most intriguing, it found that correlation with life-satisfaction as it relates to information technology was greatest among the most disadvantaged -- that is, those with lower incomes and the least amount of education. >>> Read more . . .

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