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AgeTech

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AgeTech

Predictions from report -- The Tech User Experience Needs an Upgrade

The decline of our tech experience was slow  it was barely noticeable for a while. Then device proliferation in homes – and the corresponding frustration became too obvious to miss. An AARP report notes, "No one prefers badly designed, over-complicated products." Yet that's what we get. Despite preferences, surveys show that today’s user experience for older adults is more problematic than ever. All are confronted with buggy software and frequent bug fix releases, such as a problem on iPhones that an embarrassed Apple redirected software work towards fixing. At the same time, innovation in new categories like Conversational and GenAI, machine learning and prediction have emerged and can help improve experiences if deployed properly. Over the next five years, it is highly likely that:

Aging in place -- moving costs money -- and so does staying home

Aging in place -- sounds good, but for many, it won't work.  The optimistic older adulta like their home -- and they tell survey firms that they're going to stay.  We've heard this before.  Ironically, in those days, it may have been a practical idea -- but as older adults age into the years in which they need care, the rising cost of the care they need may outpace their ability to pay, so what then? Family members help out if there are any, if they can, if they're nearby, and if they are willing.  A lot of ifs.  For the rest, we are entering a period in which more creative options will be needed and some old words, like 'roommates' and 'co-housing' will resurface.

Wisconsin Now Reimburses Residents for FallCall Medical Alert App

04/26/2024

TRUMBULL, Conn., April 25, 2024 (Newswire.com) - FallCall Solutions, an innovator in app-based medical alert technology, announced today that its 24/7 emergency monitoring subscription and pendant accessories will be reimbursed through the Wisconsin Independent Living Support Pilot (ILSP), a new program offered by Wisconsin DHS.

For big tech, "Ready, Fire, Aim" design approaches are user-hostile

What happens when engineers believe that no matter what, the customers will buy? Rant on. Look at the forum discussions of problems after Apple’s release in November, or consider Google’s Gemini self-humiliation.  Will users turn in their iPhones in disgust? Stop using Gmail in protest? What about the Tesla that is so cool it does not have to identify clearly how to open the door, or put the car into drive or reverse? Was the car returned? Will customers return a device they don’t understand? Consider Windows 11 updates are tormenting users, again per Microsoft’s own forum. Will people give up using the PC? Not likely. 

It's time for solutions -- not products -- for aging in place

You know homeowners plan to ‘age in place’ – repeated across all surveys.  It makes sense to them – they like their homes, locations, their familiar neighborhoods, shops, their friends, and neighbors. Statistics underpin the goal for 93% of adults 55+.  And they are willing to spend on services to enable them to remain there – home security, food and supplies delivery, and transportation services if they choose to or must go places without driving. They have fueled growth in the home remodeling businesses, spending on bathroom modifications and other aging-related enablers, especially home care – which may be an out-of-reach luxury for many.

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