Why mobile technology use is growing among the over 50s
Older people are using mobile technology more than ever before. We explain how over 50s can benefit from this upsurge, and why being involved is important for a better life.
Computers, Mobiles, and keeping up with the kids
The driving force behind the older generation's adoption of digital technology, mobile devices, computers and online services is largely down to younger family members always being connected—the kids are almost always glued to their gadgets!
While many over-50s have experienced computer technology in their younger years, it was never really essential. Now though, being online and owning a smartphone or tablet is vital for many services like banking, paying bills, learning and entertainment.
Over the years, the user experience, once complicated and requiring plenty of technical knowledge, has become much more simple, and now anyone can understand how to use devices and the apps contained on them. If there's a problem, family members are usually just a call or text away to help sort out a bug.
Affordable and practical
Tablets and phones are the easiest and most affordable devices to buy. Being online with a smartphone allows the older generation to keep in touch with their family, via social apps like Facebook and Instagram.
They can also be involved in the news, rather than just reading the paper, thanks to comment forums.
Older people can also take part in online services dedicated to find activities, events and social groups to keep active. While looking down at a smartphone may seem anti-social, they do open up new worlds and avenues, helping us to stay connected.
Mobile health benefits
Just because we use a tablet sitting down, it doesn't mean it's unhealthy, and with plenty of holiday booking apps and services online, smartphones and tablets can help people plan that next big adventure.
Smartphones are starting to play an increasing role in monitoring our health, which will become vital as we get a little older.
They can also help exercise the brain, with puzzles, games and challenges in a variety of forms. Even the act of using a device helps keep our hand eye coordination in trim.
For all these reasons, plus their ease of use for people with sight problems, disabilities or long term illnesses, tablets help improve our inclusion in the digital society. You can talk to them, tilt them and interact in other ways to get them to perform tasks. The tablet is rapidly becoming the tool of choice to get things done in this world.
Also, with more entertainment being delivered digitally, even older users can benefit from a second screen. Tablets are notably useful for this purpose, and dedicated tablet apps for shopping or viewing content through services like YouTube or Netflix, are ideal for older users with large buttons, decent sized text and more space for bigger images.