Voice-activated technology is not very new but it has always been pitched as a handy extra targeting millennials and busy workers. As yet, voice-activated technology has untapped potential for those with limited mobility. People with a lack of dexterity to handle a fiddly control or who rely on an indoor stairlift to get around do not want to spend hours hunting down the remote.
The trial by Hampshire County Council is giving the devices to 50 older adults who are in adult social care. It is hoped the technology, which costs up to £150 each, will help remind the pensioners when to take medications when their carer is due, and other daily tasks that can easily be forgotten.
It is thought that the virtual assistant could also start suggesting positive changes in older adults’ lifestyles, whether this includes encouraging them to drink more water or begin a gentle walking plan. The technology can help keep older adults company, by playing music, giving sports scores and updating them on the weather. The more a person talks to the device, the better it adapts to their preferences.
Hampshire is the first local authority to use this scheme but if it is deemed successful it could change the way the technology is marketed and adapted, being further improved with care in mind. The technology works with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and can keep tabs on users with motion sensors. If this is further explored it could reduce the time that authorities react to falls in the older adult community, as well as help older adults keep appointments and stay on top of medication.
Adapting technology to overcome problems within the senior community could be the way forward to improve and extend independent living. It is also an easy way for a family to be reassured that their loved one is being looked after.
This news article is from Companion Stairlifts. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.