More Seniors are Embracing Technology

When it comes to technology, older adults say they want devices that are simple, practical, and affordable – that’s the conclusion of a new Link-age Technology survey of nearly 2,400 people age 55 to 100.

“Over the past decade, we have seen a steady increase in the ownership of many types of technology with older adults, and the adoption of new technology among older adults continues to skew older and older,” the report stated. “However, need, simplicity, affordability, and practicality continue to play major roles in what older adults are using, replacing and focusing on in their day-to-day lives.”

The 2021 survey also showed that, during the pandemic, seniors spent more time online, with one respondent saying “technology was responsible for keeping me sane during the lockdowns and isolation.”

According to the study:

  • In 2019, 47% of respondents reported spending 1-3 hours per day on the internet or apps. In 2021, 42% spent 4-6 hours. Those spending 10 or more hours daily on the internet jumped from 5% to 13%.
  • The top three tasks are done on the internet – shopping, banking, and paying bills searching travel, recipes, and current events.
  • In 2021, smartphone ownership stood at 83% – up from 74% in 2019. Ownership decreases with age because older adults find that performing some tasks on a mobile device is unfavorable due to the small screen size.
  • Older adults have high ownership of personal computers (72%), laptops (66%), and tablets (58%) – PC ownership increased by 11% since 2010. 

“The data reinforces what we saw before the pandemic – older adults are adopting new technologies, especially if they are affordable, functional, and simple to use,” said Suzanne Viox, executive director of Link-age Connect. “The information in this report impacts so many industries and will hopefully help senior living providers better understand the wants and needs of those whom they serve.”

While more seniors are adopting technology, at HCAN we know that it can sometimes even the simplest devices can be confusing and online scammers are always on the lookout for easy prey.

Our trained professional caregivers can help your senior loved one navigate their devices and understand the dos and don’ts of the online world, so they don’t fall victim to a swindler out to steal their money or identify.

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