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04/21/2018

Move over, millennials, and let your grandparents show you what smart homes are all about.

04/18/2018

Franchisor is using new technology - predictive analytics for new hires.

04/10/2018

Reimbursement to audiologists.  

04/02/2018

 Is technology in the long-term care industry keeping pace with long-term demand?

Meet or hear Laurie in one of the following:

NYC, April 26-27

Boston, Portland, Maine April 30-May 5

Philadelphia, May 10-11

Boston, August 11

Chicago, October 18,19

LeadingAge, October 28,29

Market Overview for Technology for Aging in Place

Monthly blog archive

Technology design for all -- predicted in 2011, in-market in 2018

A long time ago (7 years this month) in a tech world far, far away, a report sponsored by then-AARP executive Jody Holtzman predicted that technology change would deliver a new user experience. The concept was referred to as "Technology Design for All" --  defined as 'User experiences that appeal to all age groups, persisting across versions and devices.'  According to the report Connected Living for Social Aging, which was published 7 years ago this month, the future was predicted. It is worth a look back -- note that it did happen just as described. Consider smart speakers (the Echo was launched in 2014), IoT boxes, phones, tablets, PCs, Macs and all cloud-based software.   These work without the need to download and upgrade on Patch Tuesday, though privacy improvements are the next big technology hurdle.  From the report, with the chart giving an italicized nod to tech of 2018:  

Moving beyond the pilot -- technology, services, organizations

Search for the word ‘pilot’ on this site. That is an interesting search – pages and pages of Start Me Up pilots in tech, programs, initiatives large and small, all linked, no doubt to corresponding media spend and press releases.  Think back on the cycles of tech deployment.  Remember the Alpha test, when the product barely worked at all.  After those bugs were uncovered by testers who had scripts designed for successful outcomes, it is time for the Beta test – where selected prospective users are identified, put the offering through its paces, under an assumption that the pilot will be converted to permanent deployment. 

Time to worry much more about data privacy and profiles

The irony, the irony – everyone saw Europe’s data privacy initiatives.  Why has this taken so long here? In a word – lobbying. The congressional hearing droned on, and Mark Zuckerberg tried so hard not to sound condescending towards his techno-light questioners about the so-called ‘Facebook Scandal.’ Which could have been the Google scandal, the Twitter scandal, or eve Amazon -- consolidation of industry players and using the data to sell them (or make ads ‘more effective’) or as with Amazon, sell them more stuff. The real scandal? Not the Cambridge Analytica role, which didn’t exactly sneak around in the long-time and paid analysis of Facebook data. The real scandal might be last year's $30 million of lobbying spent to avoid controls (and user protection) actions like those considered and in process in Europe.

Aging in Place Technology – Four Blog posts from March 2018

The tech ideas of March -- change incremental or disruptive.   March marked the annual American Society on Aging conference in San Francisco – where Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) are obtained for multiple social and service roles that serve older adults.  The purpose was unchanged – and the limited representation of tech in the exhibit hall  may hint at the peripheral role that technology use continues to play in these senior-focused jobs, despite the tech disruption this past year of voice first technology, or the availability of cheaper/smaller wearables and offerings for the smart home.  The four blog posts from March are:

Six Offerings from 2018 What’s Next Business Boomer Summit

The 2018 Boomer Business Summit, now in its 15th year, built this year’s conference as the ‘Blueprint for the Longevity Economy’. That blueprint depends on the enthusiasm and foresight of innovators and leaders of technology companies that focus on the boomer-senior market, increasingly offering Voice First interfaces to new capabilities. Here are Six offerings from companies whose founders are passionate about serving the needs of older adults, those who care for them and those who serve them. All of the material included here is from the firms, listed in alphabetical order.

Self-driving cars - not yet for older adults or anyone else

In a taxi in DC – the driver wends his way around buses and pedestrians.  It’s the day after the self-driving car killed a pedestrian. The next day, you can find scores of link references to a police comment that the car was likely not at fault though no investigation has completed – or even been started. In another tech publication (“Big Think – your daily microdose of genius”), you can read that in over 1.5 million miles of testing, one year ago was the first time the car had been at fault when it crashed with a bus. Really? How does the writer know this? Because Google says it was a ‘misunderstanding in the car’s software and from now on, the car will understand that large vehicles and buses will be less likely to yield.’

Do older adults have good reasons to resist technology change?

Surveys affirm increasing tech use among older adults, but for some, not so fast. Whether it is new data from Pew or AARP, some older adults refuse or are unable to use newer technologies, whether it is smartphones, online banking services, or (perhaps especially) social media.  Maybe they prefer feature phones (450 million shipped in 2017!) They may not be interested in being the first to test a new gadget or service.  Maybe they can’t get the packaging for a wearable opened without a hacksaw.  For that matter, how many of us are storing a pliers in their kitchen for vacuum-sealed containers?  But the tech of the day is particularly an anathema to a number of people, whether it is due to costly Internet plans, pricey and fragile smartphones, or hacker-improved, uh, enriched social media.

2018 Market Overview of Technology for Aging in Place published

Technology and tech-enabled services matter for older adults. The marketplace for technology to assist aging adults in the Longevity Economy is expected to grow to more than $30 billion in the next few years, according to the updated report by Aging in Place Technology Watch, more likely to be based on customization of standard software, using existing platforms than creation of senior-specific products. The report provides predictions about key technology trends for 2018 and beyond. Families, caregivers, and seniors will acquire new tech-enabled services that improve the quality of their lives. The 100-million-strong 50+ market is increasingly aware of technology alternatives -- and providers know it:

Seniors do not benefit from one-off gadget or service inventions

What percent of exhibitors at trade shows survive?  Rant on. It’s not possible to speculate because it is not tracked.  That probably is fine for that gaggle of gadgetry at CES – most acting as trial balloons to test PR-worthiness and buzz.  But what about events whose trade shows are of one-off products or services intended to help older adults? Some events will not allow a small-sponsorship company to be on the show floor, literally placing them in a corner. Consider:  Company B is a startup, not yet a member of a national association. The founder of Company B, CEO B has been too busy inventing a product to line up complementary offerings that could be sold as a solution to a problem. None of the bigger resellers know anything about Company B yet, so the tiny firm takes the corner booth and hopes that on breaks, walking around the floor will generate a business partner or two -- and with serendipity, enable Company B to be part of the solution ABC.

2018: What technology matters for older adults?

Technology utilization among older adults grew.  According to Pew Research, smartphone adoption in particular grew among older adults.  Interestingly in a later survey, those with Amazon Echo or Google Home devices and apps used their smartphones less.  Self-driving technology was a big topic in 2017, much of the hype including mention of benefits for older adults.  Still not clear why an Uber driving itself is better than a Lyft or Uber with a driver – unless it is the well-publicized incidents about Uber drivers.

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