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

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January 2022

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:

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