Aging2.0’s 2016 Innovation & Technology Use Survey

Aging2.0 recently conducted its “Senior Care Innovation and Technology Use Survey” with the goal of understanding how senior care providers from across the care continuum are approaching innovation and implementing technology to support care. More than 100 organizations completed the survey, representing a near equal split between for profit and not-for-profit providers with balanced representation of organization size and services provided.

Spotlight on Chip Conley

Chip Conley, one of the most influential entrepreneurs in hospitality in recent years and a New York Times best selling author, is one of the keynotes at this year’s Aging2.0 Summit.

Aging2.0 Consumer Panel provides feedback on several Aging2.0 Academy applicants

Aging2.0 Consumer Panel provides feedback on several Aging2.0 Academy applicants By David A. Atashroo A few dozen caregivers and older adults from Aging2.0's Consumer Panel convened on October 27, 2014 to share their insights and wisdom at The Sequoias in San Francisco, a life care community for older adults.

Design Thinking: A Better Way to Gain Empathy for Our Elderly Users

Design Thinking: A Better Way to Gain Empathy for Our Elderly Users [caption id="attachment_5747" align="alignnone" width="320"] Illustration of Elina's Aging2.0 | Berlin talk by Giovanni Ruello (@Jovatsuni)[/caption]

Fixperts: The power of practical design

I was just introduced to the wonderful concept of Fixperts - a new project by British designers Daniel Charney and James Carrigan that celebrates the often overlooked but powerful value of handy people fixing things, and helping others in the process. The project is looking to become a fully-fledged collaborative social site where through the power of the web, problems (broken lights, annoying squeaks, just about anything potentially) can be connected with practical minded technologists, designers and tinkerers. These videos show the power of such a simple concept to improve lives, and the obvious applicability to older adults and people with disabilities.

How To Write Apps for Boomers & Seniors

[ This is a guest post by Suzie Mitchell ] As a blogger and reviewer of mobile apps and websites targeted to Boomers and Seniors, my email box receives two to three requests a day from developers or public relations people who declare they have a “great app, my readers would love.” Never knowing what I might find, I review them all.  However, nine out of 10 times they are sent to my trash basket.  Why?  They are too difficult to understand or navigate. Developers who are marketing to Boomers and Seniors need to use different language in their apps and then they would if they were targeting Gen X or Gen Y.  One size does not necessarily fit all. Let’s Talk Language Boomers and Seniors (anyone above the age of 50) speak in plain language. Don’t use scare tactics to get us into your app or website like, “if you don’t use this product your health will be threatened” or “Nine out of 10 seniors fall down each month—you need this product to protect you.” We don’t respond to words like 'utilize' or 'onboarding.'  We relate to phrases like 'using apps' and 'getting started.' Forget streamlined.  It’s easy or quick—or both. Instead, use words that describe how our lives will be enhanced with your product or service.  Offer us peace of mind, reliance and convenience. Know Our Privacy Concerns If you ask us for personal information be sure to stress it will be kept private.  As a group, most of us don’t believe the Internet is safe. And we have a strong distaste for Big Brother watching us.  Remember we grew up in the 50s when the government kept Red Squad files on purported Communists and the 60s during America’s biggest civil unrest in modern times. Don’t start asking us to register for your site with a Facebook account name.  We many not want to share our new app with our Facebook friends.  We don’t feel the need to let everyone know what we’re doing.  Give us a choice immediately to try the app as guest or sign up with an email address. Don’t ask for more information than absolutely needed.  For example, a favorite app of this generation is The Weather Channel.  All it asks for is a zip code to get started.  If your app needs more information, be sure to show the lock icon in a prominent position where the data is requested. Remember it’s first and foremost about data safety. Design Presentation Use as large as font as possible.  Make it san serif with good contrasting colors.  Think Zappos.  That site is a great example of an easy to use site. Remember apps are not squished up versions of websites.  They need to be thought out carefully so older fingers can navigate them.  Older people’s hands are not as nimble as they once and they don’t necessarily function the same on a mobile device as on a computer. Think tablets—most older adults favor using tablets for their mobile apps.  Again, they are easier to navigate and easier to read—so think about developing an app for a tablet before a smartphone. Educate Us Make us watch the video before we can navigate the buttons.  That’s right,--force us.  Put the video front and center.  Maybe even with big bold letters that says Watch this First for Easy Instructions.  Boomers tend to think we know how to do everything, and when we don’t we quickly label it as bad.  Head us off at the pass.  We may not know how to find the information we need, but we definitely know how to press play. Check out Dropbox for a great idea of this idea in practice. Give Us Good Customer Service Repeatedly I’ve heard from developers that good customer service is too labor intensive and expensive.  If you can’t offer responsive customer service you don’t have enough money to launch a website or app targeted to Boomers and Seniors.  We talk, we post bad reviews, we tell everyone we know when we think we have had a bad experience. Good customer service is paramount to success in this market. People in the 50+ age group really do like technology and have the disposable income to purchase devices, apps and products.  In fact, a study conducted by one of my companies indicated that 71% of Boomers were willing to pay for medical apps if recommended by their doctor. Statistics continue to show that Boomers and early seniors are the largest online spenders of any cohort.  We are ready, willing and able to take advantage of all the new technology that can offer us better health, more free time and exciting experiences.  Developers just have to give us the technology we want and we’ll adopt.   Suzie Mitchell is CEO and founder of Clear Writing Solutions, a firm that helps healthcare IT companies market to Boomers, Seniors & Caregivers.  She also regularly blogs about technology for AARP and Next Avenue. She is releasing her second book in Spring 2013 called How to Market to Boomers, Seniors and Caregivers. You can follow her on Twitter @suziemitchell.  

Unassisted Living: Rethinking residential design

[This is a guest post by Bruce Lederman, who joined us in Chicago for our first #aging2 event there earlier this week. Bruce has over 20 years experience in the senior care field and serves as chair of the board of directors for a non-profit senior care agency. This post originally appeared on his Aging in Chicago blog. Follow Bruce at @aginginchicago.]

Consumer-Driven Innovation in Action: New Services and Business Models

In the previous post about the Healthcare Unbound Conference, Ryan Frederick commented that the time for change is now and that in order to create meaningful change we need to (1) focus on the consumer and (2) design innovative business models.   LeadingAge and LeadingAge CAST co-sponsored a session – Innovative Technology-Enabled Care Models – which truly brought these two important themes to life.