The Generation That Tech Forgot…
When we think of technology and generations, we usually think very stereotypically. The younger generation are very tech aware; always online, using social media, playing games on their Xbox’s, laptops (basically, addicted to the online world). On the other hand, we disregard the older generation, thinking they have no knowledge or capability to learn to use new technologies. We can’t let tech forget about the older generation, as there is so much technology that can benefit them greatly.
Did you know that 68% of brits aged 65 and over believe that they are stereotyped in ads and teased for lack of technology skills? Of course there are individuals 65+ who are brilliant with technology but there are also some who do need help.
So here are a few reasons why we should help our older generations to use technology for their benefit and safety.
Scammers Can Take Advantage
1. Lack of knowledge may lead individuals to be more vulnerable to scams. The charity Age UK stated that
“The financial loss for older victims was nearly twice as much per scam as for younger victims”.
We can help tackle this through simply communicating and teaching individuals what they should look out for in possible scams, such as phishing emails or other methods of scamming. Simply passing on knowledge could help reduce the chance of them falling victim.
Apps to Help Day-to-Day Life
2. There are many sites/apps online that are designed to make our day-to-day lives easier. Although the younger generation may take these for granted, our older generation may find these types of technologies life changing.
One site we found is ‘Patientaccess.com’ which allows you to book, view and cancel your NHS doctor’s appointments, order repeat prescriptions, send secured messages to your GP and much more.
These sites & apps make it possible to order necessities without needing to go out, which could help elderly individuals who are unable to or who don’t need to. Helping older people to use these types of technologies could make a big difference to their lives.
Touch Screens Are Easier
3. Research has shown that, with teaching, elderly people find touchscreens easier to use than a computer as the touchscreen is more natural than a traditional mouse. However, without teaching, smart devices can be tricky to use due to the speed that tablets, and other smart devices respond; average tablet and smart device response time to touch of icons is 0.7 seconds whereas over 65’s have a response time of around 1 second. The older generation are also likely to have a heavier touch as their nerves become less sensitive with age, meaning that slight tremors on touchscreens can be registered as a swipe by the device, rather than a touch. These types of minor difficulties play a part in our older generation not feeling confident with new tech.
Sometimes we can sound patronising when talking about technology and different generations. Thinking that older individuals may have no reason to learn about new technologies, but that is completely wrong (!).
Technology is here to benefit everybody and it is our job to teach its uses and its weaknesses to anybody who may not know, or be confident, with new technologies.
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