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digital health

Five interesting and useful technologies for older adults

Events cropped up again in March that help accelerate interest in and ultimately benefit for older adults. One of these was the Longevity Health & Innovation Summit, which featured numerous longevity and technology experts as well as a pitch challenge. Today the CTA Foundation pitch competition is being held in partnership with AARP Innovation Labs. And last week, the CABHI Summit 2021, in which several of these offerings below were presented.  All these events provide a platform for innovation competitions, presentations, collaborations and networking among funders and innovators in the age-related technology market segments. Check above links to see full lists from all three.

HandsFree Health Integrates with Smart Home and Smart Medical Devices

03/08/2021

WAYNE, Pa., March 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- HandsFree Health™, provider of WellBe®, a secure, HIPAA compliant, voice-enabled virtual health assistant platform, today announced its integration with leading  smart home and smart medical devices, fitness and activity trackers to make remote care and patient monitoring more accessible. HandsFree Health devices, including the WellBe smart speaker, smartwatch and mobile apps, now operate hundreds of smart home and medical devices using simple voice commands.

Four Aging and Health Technology Blog Posts from February 2021

Looking out toward the future – what trends matter most?  The lack of broadband access among older adults is worrisome in these days of online-only vaccine registration.  In years past, getting older adults online was a lower priority for senior advocates, social service agencies or healthcare organizations. News organizations rarely discussed tech adoption among seniors.  And survey frequency about Internet access had dwindled over a decade. Now even the Wall Street Journal tech writer searches ways to get elusive vaccine appointments scheduled for older friends and relatives. The New York Times notes that some older adults don’t have computers.  When the 2022 surveys of broadband access for the 65+ are published, will the numbers be much higher?  New government efforts are underway to offer cheaper broadband -- will older adults participate?  Stay tuned. Here are four blog posts from February 2021:

Consider the potential for wearables and older adults

The watch changed the landscape for wearables. Since the introduction of the Apple Watch in 2014 and its subsequent sales of more than 33 million (as of 2020), Apple has been the dominant player in the US market. For the market of technology for older adults, it offered a smartwatch with built-in fall detection and other numerous health features, which it continues to introduce. By 2020, it became one of Apple’s 5 most profitable businesses and reached total adoption of 100 million globally. It changed many dimensions of life, including making people look and feel cool, reinforcing healthy behaviors -- including the importance of standing up when it notices you've been sitting too long. It made people want to track health variables they never thought they would track -- like heart rate variability, blood oxygen levels, or hand washing frequency and duration.

Four Technology and Aging Blog Posts from November 2020

November revealed a growing sense of urgency about older adults. What has been the impact on them of the daily onslaught of Covid-19 statistics? What about nine months of ceaseless updates about case counts? Has this produced a permanent fear of contact with others, including families, especially on holidays? Public-private partnerships are forming to bring devices and products to older adults, now isolated for as much as 9 months. Will that help? Tech firms are trying to boost access to the internet and devices – will this become 2021 action priority for non-profits and government? And much more will be different for an older population – the real seniors, aged 75+, perhaps previously unnoticed by media. In fact, older adults have often been ignored by marketers even as boomers have all the money.  Here are four blog posts from November:

Consider Amazon’s role in the caregiving and older adult market

It’s already been a big year for new Amazon offerings that could benefit older people.   This month’s most obvious change was the introduction of Amazon Care Hub, an Alexa app that can be used to help monitor potentially isolated older adults.  But they also have done more work on Amazon Hospitality in partnership with K4Connect (which has rolled out 10,000 Alexa devices to senior living communities).  One might well argue that Amazon has and will continue to have a major impact on the quality of life for older adults (assuming senior privacy concerns and technology barriers to adoption are overcome – more on that another time):

Routinify Begins Revenue Generation Through Successful Partnership with University of Colorado and Other Healthcare Groups

10/15/2020

DENVER, Oct. 15, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Routinify, the technology-based, remote healthcare solutions company, announced today its first quarter of revenue generation through a series of paid trials with organizations and academic campuses throughout Colorado. These trials have helped to provide proof of concept and acceptance of the innovative technology throughout the healthcare industry.

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