Sunday, December 02, 2012

This looks like a report for your digital collection

Laurie Orlov has produced an excellent overview report about the 'ageing in place' market. You should download it. 

This week I was interviewed about what is happening to this market in the UK. I think the interviewer was surprised when I said that the market doesn't exist. Go and ask any older person about ageing in place and they would wonder what on earth you were talking about.

I think the poor interviewer was then horrified when I said that the importance of technology to whether an older person stays at home or not is in the low single figures of percentages. Much more important is if they can continue to get food, their health looked after and their physical security.

The trouble is when you explain this the person immediately thinks your are some sort of technology Luddite and 'don't get it' about how it can help. The truth of the matter is that the people who dosh out the money for research (politicians) are looking for nice high profile initiatives. Making sure older people get washed on a regular basis doesn't stand a chance compared with the creating of a new app for communicating with the grandkids. 

The other issue is that all of this technology has to connect to something that is going to 'do something'. You get an alarm saying that grandma hasn't taken her mediation. What do you do? Don't think about calling the NHS - they aren't interested. Get the picture? Dick Stroud

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