Market Overview for Technology for Aging in Place

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Four Technology Health and Aging Blog Posts from September 2018

September always seems like a short month.  Not just because of the calendar, but because of the pace of return to California dreamer and tech breathless launches and device announcements, Facebook’s 50 million user data breach – the usual.  Interestingly, healthcare data breaches are largely caused by insiders and cost $400+ per user data record breached.  What Facebook’s breach will cost consumers – no one knows yet, but with that volume, it can’t be good news for users.  Here are four blog posts from September 2018:

Four technology (health and aging) blog posts from August 2018

Vacations and out of office messages – it must have been August.  Some have said that there is no point in attempting a business meeting, even online, for August. Perhaps you were one of the 5 million visitors to Cape Cod, roaming the hillside vineyards in California or attending an antique car auction on the coast of Maine.  Having managed to pull off two of those three in the same month, it’s not that crazy. But there were issues, disruptions and sizable opportunities worth noting in August, the biggest one was Best Buy's purchase of GreatCall, just six weeks after Amazon acquired PillPack, the latest big company acquisition -- part of a to-be-continued series important to families and providers of care to seniors. Here are the blog posts from the month:

The technology category that cannot be spoken aloud – serving older adults

Investors continue to salivate over health tech.  Rant on.   So the first half of 2018 saw $3.4 billion invested in Digital Health (which means whatever you want it to mean.) And even when investments or company roll-ups are specifically about the Medicare population – frothy writers cannot bring themselves to use clear wording. So Optum acquires DaVita Medical Group and Humana acquires Kindred Healthcare. Gee, what do they do? Yes that is vertical integration in the continuum of care – specifically for health services to elderly Medicare recipients.  And the $146 million that went into PointClickCare – that is software for long-term post-acute care (LTPAC), another euphemism for what it really is – care of the elderly, generally in nursing homes.

Six Tech (Aging and Health) Blog Posts from July 2018

Voice First technology – triaging the healthcare opportunity.  This week’s Voice of Healthcare Summit in Boston offered up some intriguing attempts to create new Voice First interfaces that inform patients, streamline work, and demonstrate potential (like Answers by Cigna) in versions 2, 3 and beyond.  One of the most intriguing presentations – KidsMD – a Boston Children’s Hospital ‘accelerator’ initiative begun in 2016 and is winning over the staff.  The organization is clearly committed to using Voice First interfaces for patients, for internal questions (“Who is the Charge Nurse on 7 South?”), for hands-free operating room checklists, for post-discharge guidance and for home health (100,000 interactions to date).  They’ve added a skill called AskICU that highlights the potential for ‘hands free, eyes free’ questions that have easy (but difficult to find) answers, like available beds on a floor, or detailed answers like “Medication dosage details from the Code Cart”.   The other hospitals in Boston are well aware of the innovation at Children’s, but other than experiments (like one at Beth Israel Deaconess), nothing of the scope of KidsMD has materialized.  In other blog posts from July:

Marketing technology – are seniors different from other people?

Google discovers seniors (sort of) and thus a market is maybe born. There was a breathlessness to the CNBC article on July 23, 2018 – Google is mulling older adult applications for its Nest product line – particularly in senior housing settings, hopefully at less cost per installation than its website pricing.  And gee whiz, one of the uses is pathway lighting to find the bathroom – presumably replacing motion-sensing night lights for $7.97 from Walmart. Up next, predicting life-threatening falls, perhaps as an alternative to Philips CareSage or BioSensics Frailty Meter, for example.  Google execs qualified our enthusiasm, per the article: “The ideas are only in the discussion stage and may not find their way into shipping products.” Since his role at Google is to do “something interesting” -- perhaps this may not turn out to be.

Four Blog Posts (and concerns) That You May have Missed

Considering the dog days of summer.  Dog days – these are the hottest days of summer, according to that Oracle of modern culture, Wikipedia.  As the glow and racket from fireworks fade, it's time to mull over the thoughts that zipped by in recent months, perhaps not noticed, but are worth another consideration.  All four of these posts are about our technology life, as shoppers in stores as recently as July 1, our experience with user interfaces that are designed for none, catching up on the hype/hope/fading hope about self-driving cars, and finally, the only thing that can terrorize a company the size of Walmart – Jeff Bezos and Amazon. Here are four blog posts to take a look at in this sleepy week:

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