New Technology for Aging in Place

Airman Nathan H. Barbour

 

A new trend has been gaining popularity within the senior citizen population of the United States — aging in place. In other words, an increasing number of seniors would rather grow old in their homes rather than live in a senior care facility.

Though the idea is admirable, aging in place doesn’t come without a few risks, especially in a home that hasn’t been designed to accommodate the needs of the elderly. Safety and health concerns can become a stumbling block for many seniors who do not have access to immediate medical assistance or in-home care.

Thankfully, we live in an age of exponential technological innovation. Every day new technological advancements make our lives a little bit easier. There are a number of technologies available or currently in development that can aid seniors who desire to age in place.

 

WooHoo

WooHoo is an easy to use and interactive interface that allows families to care for children and the elderly. Woohoo has advanced features such as facial recognition, motion detectors (such as detecting falls), video/audio detection, and voice-based commands. With WooHoo you can control practically every device in your home through a smart app and A.I. platform. You can learn more about this amazing technology here.

 

IQBuds

IQBuds is a useful technology for seniors aging in place because each user can customize their own hearing profile. IQBuds are wireless earbuds in the $200 range that can be tailored to the individual user based on their hearing ability. The app attached to the technology offers an advanced hearing test that will determine your hearing capacity. This technology isn’t tailored for just those who have a hearing disability (though it will prove to be a great aid to seniors with hearing problems). Even those who can hear perfectly fine can use IQBuds to customize their listening experience. You can learn more about this technology here.

 

EZVIZ

EZVIZ is a “lookout smart door viewer” that essentially transforms a peephole into an advanced security video system. Essentially, this technology allows someone on the inside of a home to view who is waiting on the other side of their door. What truly makes this technology unique is its facial recognition features. The owner can use an app to create a gallery of those they trust. The security will then allow or deny access based upon these preset parameters. Click here to learn more about this technology.

 

Cutii

Cutii is a vocal and facial recognition robot. It was designed with seniors in mind, providing a catalog of services and activities. Simply give Cutii a voice command, and it will do as you say. Don’t expect Cutii to take out the trash or give the dog a bath, but it can help you keep appointments by setting reminders and call loved ones on your behalf, just in case you forget. Cutii can be controlled via remote, or you can let it run on its own. Cutii could very well be the autonomous caretaker that seniors who age in place need. Learn more here.

 

Buddy

Buddy is the second robot on this list, and though you can’t currently buy it, it’s still worth signing up for the waitlist. Buddy is most notably compared to Amazon Echo. You can hold conversations with buddy, and he will respond, amongst other interactions. Buddy can play videos, play music, keep your family company, monitor your home and much more. Buddy is especially helpful to those who choose to age in place as it can keep an eye on the inhabitants of the home. No one can say for sure when Buddy will be available for purchase again, but you can pre-order it here.

 

Triby

As the name implies, this product is a portable speaker with the Amazon AI Alexa embedded into its inner workings. Triby can perform most commands that you give it. You can use it for internet radio, a speakerphone for your cell phone as well as a message board. You can essentially tell this program anything, and it will respond. You can have it remind you of appointments, set alarms and much more. All you need is your voice. Simply call its name (Alexy), and Triby will respond right away. Learn more about it here.

 

ADT Health

ADT Health has collaborated with  Samsung and Reemo Health to provide health and wellness data that is connected to a personal emergency response system (PERS). You can access this system through the innovative Samsung Gear S2 and S3 smartwatches, giving seniors the ability to view their health information no matter where they are in the house.

Seniors can rest assured that help is only a click away, as they can engage in a live call with an ADT agent if anything were to go wrong such as a fall or an accident of a similar nature. As an added bonus, the S2 and S3 smartwatches also track the number of steps taken in a day and heart rate information. This information can encourage fitness-based activities amongst seniors. You can learn more about it here.

 

Lenovo Smart Display

The Lenovo Smart Display is designed to enlarge all images on the screen. The words are bolded, and the font is much larger — perfect for senior citizens who experience vision problems. The design of the Lenovo Smart Display discourages hands on use. However, the touchscreen is fully functional. Seniors can use this technology to make phone calls, play music and much more. The Lenovo Smart Display has yet to launch, but there’s a waiting list that you can sign up for here.

 

Seniors should have the right to age in place if they so desire. With the advent of increasingly helpful technology, we may very well see a massive rise in seniors who decide to age in the comfort of their own homes. Much of the technology on this list has yet to launch, but that tells us that we all have something to look forward to in the future.

 

Featured Image credit: U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Nathan H. Barbour