By Rachel Stewart
Seniors are becoming more tech savvy, with four in 10 reportedly owning a smartphone according to a 2017 Pew Internet study. This number has nearly doubled over the course of four years. So it makes sense that with a greater reliance on mobile devices, more apps are built with senior needs in mind. Here’s a quick overview of six free apps for both iOS and android smartphones to consider downloading
1. AARP. Currently an AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) member? This app lets members access information and benefits in mere moments. Users can check out the latest local discounts or benefits, or find and register for upcoming events. The app also lets members manage their membership and messaging preferences through the simple interface.
2. Skype. Stay connected with loved ones via the Skype app. Users can video chat with just one person or multiple people via a chat group. This app also allows users to send photos or tag other users in the group text chat window. If an in-person visit feels too faraway, Skype can help users “see” family and friends as often as they like.
3. Medisafe. Having trouble keeping up with medications? The Medisafe app lets users import their current prescription list from their electronic health records and set alerts, cutting down on missed doses. Users can also monitor how well they’ve kept up with taking their medications and the app even compiles it in a handy pdf report users can share with their medical provider next time they have a check up. It even lets you manage multiple pill lists (for other family members) and sends refill reminders and coupons.
4. Magnifying Glass with Flashlight. Aging-related vision issues can make it harder to read, but the Magnifying Glass with Flashlight app can help users comfortably read small print on restaurant menus, letters, or medication bottles. The flashlight function can help users find items in dimly lit areas or in an emergency if the power goes out. Both functions can be used at the same time, too.
5. Mint. Never fuss over misplacing a paper bank statement again. The Mint app allows users to safely and securely view their accounts on one screen and help them map current and past spending habits. These can be broken down by type of spending, such as mortgage, car, entertainment, and so on. The app even shows users if they are at risk of going over budget, and they can view their spending or budgets from the past month to see how they’re doing.
6. LibriVox. Tired of watching what’s on TV? Fire up the LibriVox app to find an audiobook to listen to while you cook dinner, relax, or try and drift off to sleep. The app contains books in the public domain that are read by volunteers. App users can search the catalogue by author, title, subject/genre, and language.