Getting Grandma to Embrace Technology Doesn't Have to Be a Struggle

According to tech columnist Dan Tynan, embracing technology helps the elderly lead fuller lives. The best way to help seniors adopt new gadgets is to sell them on their relevant benefits.

According to Yahoo Tech Columnist Dan Tynan, nearly two-thirds of Americans over 80 don't use the internet and cell phones. He arguest that the savvier seniors can be, the better there 21st century lives are. While he acknowledges that new gadgets and unfamiliar lingo can make the elderly feel like outsiders, Tynan explains that there are many ways to get Grandma into the groove of utilizing technology.


His first bit of advice is to try and make tech relevant to your elderly loved ones. Allow their learning to be motivated by a goal such as joining Facebook to see photos of grandkids. Another way to make technology appeal to older adults is to demonstrate the pragmatics of certain devices. One businessman interviewed by Tynan explained that the elderly don't care about tech as status symbols (which is why you don't see many nonagenarians rockin' Beats by Dre). Gadgets for seniors should always work to make their everyday lives easier. They don't need bells and whistles to be sold on a device.

The most important thing to remember is that you have to patient. The elderly aren't wired for mindless tasks like double-clicking and don't often speak the vernacular. Young tech tutors may grow impatient at having to spend minutes at a time explaining tasks that take seconds to do. Tynan points to AARP workshops that can help teach seniors at their own pace.

Inevitably, the things that sell gadgets to the uninitiated are pragmatics and ease. If you can do anything to boost those elements (and explain why never to answer those Nigerian princes), your elderly loved ones will have a better time adapting to modern tech.

Read more at Yahoo

Photo credit: Andresr / Shutterstock

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