We’re thrilled by the opportunity new touchscreen devices offer to seniors previously unable to use or uncomfortable using computers and want to help family caregivers and other loved ones open new doors for seniors through the web and social networking.
Greenville, SC (PRWEB) October 30, 2012
The art of selecting a computer for senior loved ones was redefined going into the 2012 holiday season by Microsoft’s introduction of Windows 8 and the accompanying announcements of new computing devices utilizing the Windows 8 touchscreen capability. Among the beneficiaries are older adults and the family members seeking to demonstrate how easy it is to gain the benefits of going online and participating in social networking.
Reflecting this major change in product offerings, and both the opportunities and confusion that it may drive just as the shopping season begins, Senior Care Corner has developed new tips for those choosing computing gifts for senior loved ones.
“We’re thrilled by the opportunity the wide range of touchscreen devices offers to seniors previously unable to use or uncomfortable using computers” says Barry Birkett of Senior Care Corner. “We want to help family caregivers and other loved ones open new doors for older adults through the web and social networking.”
Considerations When Selecting Computing Devices for Seniors
Taking into account these points can improve the likelihood a device purchased for a senior loved one will provide enjoyment and other benefits well after a gift is unwrapped.
Consider how the device will be used.
- If intended for basic web access, reading e-books and document creation, there typically isn’t a need the fastest and most expensive processors or large amounts of memory.
- Applications such as home movie editing or game playing benefit from faster processors and greater amounts of both RAM and storage memory as well as larger screens or monitors.
Consider where the device will be used.
- When use is to be limited to a single location, such as a desk or table at home, desktop or all-in-one computers can be an economical way to buy any level of capability with the plus of greatest screen size optionality, both for touch and non-touch screens.
- If mobility is needed, whether within the home or for travel, a laptop, tablet or one of the new convertibles (laptops that convert to be used as tablets) provide the greatest flexibility but also tradeoffs between screen size and ease of portability.
Consider how the device will connect to the web.
- Use exclusively at home for those aging in place, the homes of family members, or other areas with Wi-Fi, including public hotspots, can mean that the built-in Wi-Fi capability in most portable devices should be sufficient.
- Devices used where Wi-Fi is not available, or if private or sensitive information (such as banking or healthcare data) is to be communicated or viewed over the web, cellular broadband capability should be considered. This is an option in many devices or may be added via USB attachment or portable hotspot from cellular companies. Note that many smartphones can be “tethered” to computers and tablets to connect them to the web.
Consider any physical limitations of the intended users.
- Larger screens may provide greatest access and enjoyment to those with reduced vision.
- Touchscreens, now widely available in all sizes with devices using Windows 8, may provide greatest access to those whose manual dexterity is limited, such as by arthritis or injury.
Consider compatibility with devices used by family and friends.
- File sharing, especially with documents, is often easiest with compatible devices.
- Family members providing “tech support” to seniors may be limited in their ability to address issues on devices that are not compatible with their own.
About Senior Care Corner
Senior Care Corner (on the web at SeniorCareCorner.com) provides solutions, information and tools to family caregivers and others who care for and about senior adults to help them improve the lives of the seniors in their lives. Their blog, biweekly podcast and bookstore address a wide variety of topics family caregivers can use to better understand the wants and needs of their senior loved ones.