Tag Archives: AgeTek

Vitallink Keeping the Elderly Connected

Did you know that there are 78 million baby boomers in the US and over 1 billion world wide. That the fastest growing age group are adults over the age of 85. Many of these adults are separated from their children and grandchildren and live alone often in isolation. A coalition called AgeTek was created to try to solve this problem. One of the members of this coalition is Vitallink.

Vitallink is a system that is installed on the older persons computer and it allows them to use applications such as Skype, or check the weather or answer email with a touch of a button. To answer email the elderly person can either type the answer as you would normally, or they can speak the reply. The use of video applications such as Skype are important because  they  allow the caregiver or relative to see their parent or grandparent.  Seeing someone can tell you a lot more about their condition then a simple call. Elderly people are often reluctant to bother their off-spring because they don’t want to be a burden. Besides which would be better having grandma read a story over the phone to her grandchild or having grandma read the story through video chat, where the child can see and interact with their grandma. I know which method I would choose. The subscription for Vitallink is only $5.00 a month.

The two hardest groups to sell the product to is the elderly adult who are often computer phobic and the person who does the purchasing for the big box company who often are young and don’t recognize the elderly as an important market. Once the elderly adult uses the Vitallink technology for just a short time they are almost always sold on it. Unfortunately it takes a lot more time and effort to try to convince the young sales person of its necessity.

Interview by Andy McCaskey of SDR News and Dave Lee from Waves of Tech

The Aging Technology Alliance

Presto email-to-print serviceThe Aging Technology Alliance (AgeTek) trade association is a group of companies that have products and services to help older people maintain their quality of life and stay in their homes longer. The website is aimed at carers who need stuff to help them look after their Mom or Dad.

On show at the website are a wide range of gadgets, from easy-to-use TV remotes to big button mobile phones. One gadget I hadn’t seen before is the Presto, which prints out emails without a computer. Friends and relatives send an email to the Presto service and instead of the email arriving in an inbox, a printer-like device prints out the email in the person’s home. It only uses an ordinary analogue phone line, so there’s no need for broadband. That’s a good solution for older people in today’s world. I like it.

Interview by Jeffrey Powers of Geekazine and and Andy Smith of Geocaching World.

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