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08/07/2022

Suggests a gerontechnology ombudsman to mediate concerns.

08/05/2022

Helps older people find a place to live and gets them the services.

08/04/2022

The capability for ultrasound scans to be done via a wearable.

07/31/2022

Most noted are wheelchairs, walkers, and other items for disabilities.

07/29/2022

Focus on improving health outcomes, adding more support from staff.

Meet or hear Laurie in one of the following:

What's Next Longevity Innovation Summit, DC, December, 2022

Monthly blog archive

Something new -- Apple Watch ad sells fear to the young

Perhaps you have seen the scary Apple Watch ad about 911 calls. If not, here it is, short but it’s a doozy. Three examples of desperate 911 calls. Young woman trapped in car filling with water, young man paddle-boarding, wind pushing him out to sea, and a farmer who fell and can’t move (at the end, we calm down because all were rescued by emergency responders.) So this is the argument for the $749 or more for Series 7 Apple watch with Cellular access? Not an 82-year-old woman living alone, but instead, selling heart-racing fear to the young. Why it could open a whole new market of watch buyers and upgraders. So what could go wrong – and what about this IS wrong?

Did you miss one? Five Tech and Aging Blog Posts from January 2022

In the time of CES 2022 – advice to tech firms about older adults. Perhaps you aren't paying attention -- but once per year, innovations from around the world are presented at CES for comment, media attention, and most of all, seeking interest about what's new (or even just envisioned). This year it is a hybrid event -- with some folks in person, some watching online and others lurking among the press releases. Next week's blog post will detail 10 products/services from CES 2022 that will likely make a difference for older adults. But this week, here is advice for startups and new entrants when thinking about reaching an older adult audience. It is extracted from the Technology for Aging 2022 Market Overview, to be posted following CES, and including 30 offerings that were not in the 2021 version. Read more.

Interactive television offerings in 2022 for health and wellbeing

For older adults, television is a solid rock in an ever-shifting technology landscape. Approximately half of the older adult population has a smart TV – a common platforms used to stream Internet services without an associated specialty box like Apple TVRoku or Chromecast. And the rest may have standard TV with attached streaming devices. Smart TVs, a treasure trove of data, according to Elizabeth Parks, CEO of Parks Associates, can also deliver access to telehealth services, share family photos, and provide engagement for older adults who may be homebound. Alternatively, a device can be connected to a TV to enable an organization or family to connect directly with older adults who may not be comfortable with smartphones, tablets or smart speakers. Here are six TV-based offerings for older adults – in alphabetical order, all information is from the companies’ websites or press releases:

Six recent Voice/Conversational AI innovations for older adults

Older adults benefit from voice-AI enabled innovation and deployment. And it looks like they will continue to benefit in 2022 and beyond. For one thing, at least two-thirds of older adults (age 70+) own smartphones, the 65+ population prefers Alexa among voice assistants, one-third of Americans have smart speakers. Researchers want to understand how best to create a voice assistant. Amazon’s Alexa Together wants to help monitor falls of older adults in senior living. Advice to seniors seeks to help older adults understand how to benefit from voice while aging in place. In addition, multiple senior living organizations have or are now publicizing their initiatives (information is from the publicly available material):

CENSUS DATA: Finding caregivers (family or paid) is harder than ever

Family caregivers cannot provide enough care for a growing population of the 80+. You may remember. AARP Public Policy research in 2013 revealed a future crisis in availability of people to care for an aging population (“You take care of Mom, but who will take care of you?”). The report indicated that the Caregiver Support Ratio (CSR), the number of potential caregivers aged 45-64 compared to the population of individuals aged 80+, was going to significantly worsen. The projections showed that it would move from a ratio of 7 to 1 (using 2010 census data) down to 4 to 1 by 2030. That was worrisome, long before the term solo agers was coined. A 2015 blog post examined census that data by county (Stranded by Geography) and identified retirement destinations that had the worst ratios.And in 2017, analysis was published showing the ratio of population aged 80+ to care workers, calling it the Paid Caregiver Support Ratio, or pCSR.

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Four trends to watch from 2022 Market Overview Technology for Aging

As 2022 begins, the oldest baby boomer turns 76. As the population aged 65+ exceed 54 million, trends emerge. Because of the sheer size of the older adult market, and the wealth of baby boomers, vendors increasingly see them as constituents for new offerings.  The pace of innovation is accelerating, driven by older adult changing needs, shortage of care workers, investor interest and of course.  Considering the recent CES 2022 product introductions, we are entering a world of 'touchless' interactions, ubiquitous sensors and hearables, as well as AI and machine learning, now about to reach its promise and contribute to serving older adults.   Here are just four of the trends identified in the 2022 Market Overview, Technology for Aging

Technologies for Older Adults from CES 2022

CES 2022 – smaller in size, but big in tech futures.   Many big companies decided at the last minute to stay home, eliminating, as one attendee noted, the lines at Starbucks.  But this very-global show went on anyway, this time with 40,000 in person (down from 171,000 just two years ago.) AARP Innovation Labs, CTA Foundation accessibility awards, and numerous other in-person, remote, and hybrid sub-events went on (sort of) as scheduled. As with prior CES events, multiple new technologies that benefit older adults were showcased from around the world.  Some will appear in the US market, others may not until a much later date, if ever. All text is from public media. All are worth a look. 

In the time of CES 2022 -- advice to tech firms about older adults

This week is CES 2022 -- new and current entrants seek markets and partnerships.  Perhaps you aren't paying attention -- but once per year, innovations from around the world are presented at CES for comment, media attention, and most of all, seeking interest about what's new (or even just envisioned).  This year it is a hybrid event -- with some folks in person, some watching online and others lurking among the press releases. Next week's blog post will detail 10 products/services from CES 2022 that will likely make a difference for older adults.  But this week, here is advice for startups and new entrants when thinking about reaching an older adult audience.  It is extracted from the Technology for Aging 2022 Market Overview, to be posted following CES, and including 30 offerings that were not in the 2021 version. The advice: 

Did you miss one? The Four tech and aging blog posts December 2021

So much happened in 2021 that should benefit older adults.   It should be more feasible to purchase hearing aids ‘over the counter’ without an exam (offered for many years in Japan, but whatever...) and at a price point that is more reasonable for largely uninsured devices.  Honor bought Home Instead – which should result in more technology used in the home care industry -- and soon, hopefully, for an industry suffering from  a severe labor shortage. LifeStation (never a first mover) became the latest to introduce a PERS watch, which should be the non-stigmatizing form factor for Personal Emergency Response devices. Big tech revealed growing interest in older adults and investors saw the potential in firms like Papa, which provides (reimbursed) varied assistance to older adults. Lowe’s prioritized helping older adults and partnered with AARP, which should help older adults benefit from smart homes.  And maybe the big deal starts now -- the oldest baby boomers turn 76, which should trigger even more investment in 2022 and beyond. Here are the four December posts:

Wrapping up 2021 – trends to watch plus 10 most-read blog posts

For tech and older adults, the year 2021 was pivotal. It was the year of age-tech gaining AARP visibility as AgeTech. It was a year in which hearables moved into the mainstream of hearing assistance, and lower cost over-the-counter hearing aids became more likely. It was a year in which wearables for older adults began to make sense – as predicted in 2020, replacing the PERS pendant with a wrist-worn wearable. It was a year in which radar-based fall detection became a non-wearable alternative within the smart home.  Radar, in fact, may join motion sensors, AI, cameras, and voice first technologies as no longer separate and disconnected, but instead part of an integrated smart home infrastructure. Imagine the home as a ‘participating caregiver’ with an in-home team of technologies that help enable older adults’ desire to age in place.  Imagine “Family on Demand” as a form of insurance-reimbursed services. And imagine what might happen in 2022.  Let's imagine it together -- starting next week. The blogs:

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