The market for technology products for seniors is estimated to be worth $20 billion by 2020, as reported in the Wall Street Journal. New technologies are being developed to help aging baby boomers take advantage of technological innovation. One of these new technologies is a robotic assistant called ElliQ which is meant to help seniors navigate technology. This robot can help seniors use their smartphones or tablets, to set pill reminders, call for a ride or communicate with family. Other companies will be releasing devices meant to provide companionship to seniors such as a robot cat from Hasbro or an easy to use flip phone from the company GreatCall.
Startup companies are also looking to solve some of the problems associated with aging through innovation. One example of this is Techmate, a service meant to provide technology support for the elderly. Another is GoGoGrandparent, an on-demand car service for those who do not have a smart phone.
While there are obvious challenges to developing new technology for seniors such as making it easy to use despite physical limitations, it is clear that seniors could benefit immensely from technology. As summarized by technology designer Yves Behar: “More and more people are looking to apply technology for real needs. The aging population is one that would be, could be most helped by this technology.”