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assistive technologies

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assistive technologies

CTA Foundation Launches Contest for Startups Improving Lives of Seniors and People with Disabilities

09/14/2016

ThThe Consumer Technology Association (CTA)™ Foundation, partnering with Extreme Tech Challenge, today announced the second annual video contest focused on startup companies with technologies that improve lives.

Five hearing tech announcements that could benefit older adults

Hearing technology advances -- the hearing aid industry considers changing. It’s a positive when you see disruption of industries that have too tight a lock on the consumer, whether it is in categories of health insurance, telecom carriers or hearing aids.  You spend time with people everywhere you go – those with significant hearing loss but no hearing aids; they have hearing aids, but hate to wear them.  According to a recent NY Times article, two-thirds of adults over 70 have hearing loss that warrants hearing aids, but only 15-30% of those wear them – and at $5000 a pair, no wonder. In recent years, personal sound amplification products (PSAPs) that are not classified as hearing aids and thus do not require the audiologist role, though the FDA may change that. Just asking, if the device is called a ‘Wearable’, does Silicon Valley find it more worthy of funding? But anyway. In July, Consumer Reports published an explanatory guide that should be required reading for organizations that serve older adults. It would seem to be the wild west of innovation.  Here is a sampling of five recent product announcements:

Sensoria Debuts Walking App to Help Improve Activity Tracking for Individuals with Limited Mobility

05/12/2016

REDMOND, WA – May 12, 2016 – Sensoria Inc.’s, a world leader in the development of IoT enabled garments, new walking app, Sensoria Walk, is now available for download in the App Store. The new app works with the company’s 2015 CES Innovation Award Honoree smart socks to help its wearers track their daily activity including steps, cadence and distance during rehabilitation after a stroke or post-surgery—with the ultimate goal of speeding up overall recovery time.


Why do aging services organizations change their names?

What's in a name? At last week’s LeadingAge, CCRCs became Life Plan Communities. The change was made because "continuing care" implies a setting where older adults are being cared for. (Duh.) And apparently 84% of consumers younger than 65 didn’t know what a CCRC was.  Probably young folks also didn’t get it when AAHSA became LeadingAge in 2011. To the outside observer who last attended in 2010, the LeadingAge conference seems unchanged, and the business of the members? Also unchanged. The book of session topics, exhibit hall booth purchasers, and the roles of executives attending – appears to be the same old, same, as it were, old – not-for-profit CCRCs, uh, Life Plan Communities. Oh, and the for-profit equivalent, ALFA, will not to be outdone namewise - that association is now called Argentum (Latin for 'Silver').

CES2016: Call for Technology that Improves Lives

09/10/2015

Arlington, VA – 09/09/2015 – The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)® ,  and its affiliated charitable CEA Foundation, are pleased to announce the launch of an inaugural video contest focused on startup companies with technologies that improve lives.


Can anyone make money with designs that are just for seniors?

The more innovation there is, the more some things don’t change.  Stroll through this Aging 2.0 Summit link – and you will see pages of logos of new, newer, and newest companies trying to make a technology or product that could be used to serve seniors – or perhaps help those who serve them. Or the AARP Health50 Live Pitch, or the Stanford Longevity Design Challenge or the Quintiles competition at Wake Forest in North Carolina. Yet again and again, the question bubbles up – can firms make money creating and selling technology or other innovations specifically designed for seniors?  

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