Seniors do need a Smartphone, here's why every SENIOR should own one.
Seniors are creatures who are holding on to old habits
I, myself, am a Senior, a Baby Boomer, an "Old Fart", or whatever you younger Gen-Xers or Millenials might call us these days.
And admittedly, I do spend much of each of my days driven by my habits.
These habits of mine are ones that I developed through the early and most active part of my life, as an adult.
The second half of my life, I may have modified a few of these habits but generally speaking, over my lifetime, I established the big ones and the most stubborn ones early.
As I sit here, thinking about this fact, we can say that if you are a Senior, then that means you, like myself, are doing things in ways and using tools that are easily over thirty years old.
So, stop right here and think about this new found reality. Just Roll this little fact around in that stubborn head of yours for a moment.
Thirty years ago, here are a few of the facts that were once true but are now obsolete.
1- a TV weighed a ton, had terrible resolution and cost a fortune to buy. It received its signal from the local TV station via an antenna or if you were lucky, enough to live in the right place, from poor resolution analog cable service.
2- A telephone was large, generally colored black and had to be attached via a wire in your wall directly to the telephone company. And that little wire is what limited its use to a very small area of your home and life.
3- Gas for your car was so cheap that you didn't even consider it in your daily travel or shopping plans. You just filled the tank and drove wherever you wanted to go.
4- And your Health? Then ,you were in what was called "excellent health", and rarely needed to call of visit a Doctor. Remember, you were young then and everyone you knew was young, and you were all healthy. with none of the frailties that come with aging.
5- If you had to see a Doctor, their office was usually nearby, just like your favorite stores, restaurants, etc.
6- And if your physician prescribed a medicine for you, it was most likely a simple prescription, relatively cheap to purchase that you could pick up at the drugstore a few streets away form your home. Also, with the advancements in medical care, there were many less prescription options available then.
These are but a few of the likely differences in how things were done in a Senior's youth versus this brave new world we now live in.
A Seniors World needs Support
As a person ages they find that their World is now filled with a number of unavoidable problems with their bodies, such as;
- aching joints (remember those years you worked in that cold foundry?),
- torn muscles (remember that football game where you first tore up your shoulder?),
- cranky internal organs like;
- your lungs (Everyone smoked then, right?),
- your back (those old sports injuries, remember),
- your Liver (remember those eight years you drank like a fish, before you got married?),
- your heart (you loved those high-fat and cholesterol foods then, right?),
- and the list goes on and on.
Eventually, you realize that your body needs for you to take charge and manage this cornucopia of maladies that have beset you.
That's right, You and only You can manage your health properly. The tools and facilities are out there, and often at a reasonable cost, but it is up to you to take charge.
Seniors are living and operating in a New Technology World
Other than the major cities, today, it is rare to find a smaller town that has a viable and energetic commercial center in the old downtown section where everyone local goes to to shop and get things done.
Decades ago, the Malls, Shopping Centers, Strip Malls, Medical Centers and Super-Centers of every ilk sprang up at interstate and other road intersections and in doing so they pulled their customers from the old town centers.
Because these large satellite centers were so spread out, it became necessary for the towns, counties, states and even federal government to build such things as Freeways, Highways, Interstate roads, Expressways, and other sleek, wide and multiple lane roads to connect these far out places to the actual population centers.
Where we once could walk or take a bus to a neighborhood store, now we think nothing of a fifteen or even twenty-five mile drive to see our Doctor or to just Shop in a nice Mall.
We get into our car and drive several miles for some bread and eggs at a 200,000 square foot Supermarket, where we would once walk only four of five blocks to pick the same thing up at the corner store.
Accept it, we Seniors, are now a small part of a widespread and complex mobility-oriented world. That old world, of our youth, that we built our daily lifestyle habits on, is Gone!
So you, my friend, need to understand and use the latest tools to make this bigger and more complex technical world work for you and not work against you.
Old design Cell phone dispaly
Just what does a SMARTPHONE Do?
OK, don't fall asleep now! I am just getting to the meat of the article.
I promise I am not going to get into the technology of SmartPhone design.
I just want you, the stubborn Senior that you are, to understand a few things that these Phones offer to you, the Senior, Baby Boomer, Retiree, Old Fart, whatever you call yourself, if you need such help!
They call these babies SmartPhones simply because they have powerful enough computers built into them that they can perform a number of helpful functions for the user, over and above just making and receiving a phone call.
Once you accept the fact that these SmartPhones are just phones that are also programmed to provide what are commonly called APPs or specific helpful Applications for the user's entertainment and aid.
Popular Functions of a SmartPhone
Make and Receive Phone Calls and store Missed Calls
Provide storage for phone numbers, address' email address, etc. of your contacts
Provide access to your email account for send and receive
Provide camera for instant picture to store or send to others
Provide search and find for free WIFI services
Provide Note tools to write and store personal notes
Provide a real-time Calendar for storing appointments with Alarms andReminders
Provide real-time Maps with directions to other address'
Provide Internet access for searching for information, address', definitions, etc.
Provide tools for storing your Medical Information for your Physicians including Prescriptions, etc.
Provide Video. Movie and Live Sports broadcasts on the screen
Provide games, access to Books, Magazines, and other forms of entertainment
A Table of Popular Smart Phone Functions
For simplicity's sake, I will list just a few of the most prevalent and powerful of these tools in the table below for you.
In actuality there are APPs available for almost any use you might come up with.
And with certain specialized attachments, your SmartPhone can even be used as a;
Blood Pressure Monitor,
Calorie Counter, keep up with those calories consumed, your exercise, and your weight
Personal Warning System learn about Traffic problems, wrecks, construction and more on the road,
Tracking device for yourself or other family members in case you get lost, Allow a relative to find you or you to find a relative, at any time, anywhere.
Emergency Help systems that allow you to immediately call and utilize a reputable company that provides you help when you are searching for;
Garages, for auto service
Towing Companies, when your vehicle breaks down anywhere.
Rescue Squads, for those occasions when yours or someone elses life demands Medical help immediately.
Family members, have all of your family members at your fingertips as well as allowing you to be available to them wherever either of you needs to contact the other
Insurance Companies, get you Insurance company working for you immediately if you need them.
and the list goes on and on.
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Smartphones have Useful Tools for Seniors
So, if you look closely at the list of the more popular functions that are used on SmartPhones today, you should be able to accept that these tools can give you some level of peace of mind in today's world.
And they can save you a lot of wasted time if you are still using; pieces of paper for notes, an old telephone book with penciled in numbers in the margin, and a worn-out, old wrinkled and torn city map from a five-year-old Atlas to get around.
Here are some examples of what you can do with a SmartPhone in your pocket;
- Open your Contact List and call anyone of your family, friends or associates, from anywhere, anytime.
- Receive a call, wherever you might be, from the same people that you can either answer or let go to your own Voice Mail to handle later.
- Send and receive eMail to/from your contacts and anyone else that you give your email address to.
- Easily receive appointments from your Doctors and others to add to your Calendar, so you can keep up wherever you might be.
- Request a Map with instant and clear Directions from wherever you might be to any address you provide.
- Make your own Voice Recordings when you have something that you do not want to forget.
- Dial 911 from anywhere.
- Entertain yourself with games, books, Sports events and web searches, while sitting in; waiting rooms, visiting areas, on the Beach, anywhere.
- Have access to Golf Courses, with accurate yardages from anywhere on the course.
- And, if you set these up, you become a more Mobile and flexible Senior rather than one tied to a house or Apartment.
Looks pretty Handy, Huh?
Yes, SmartPhones do cost more than regular, "talk only" cell phones. In fact, they cost significantly more just to manufacture them.
But, when an individual wants a Cellphone, regardless of whether it is a regular one or a complex SmartPhone, it is the Cellular Carrier who eats most of the cost of the phone.
You see, the Cellular Carriers make their money selling their service, not on the phone sale itself. In fact, if you look into it, you can get a pretty good SmartPhone for next-to-nothing, or even, often, actually for FREE.
That is, if you sign up for one or two years of their service.
So, if you shop and compare what's available from the different carriers, and do a little research online, you can end up with an upgrade to your phone to a SmartPhone for a relatively reasonable increase in your monthly bill.
Smart Phone Poll
Do You Think You NEED a Smart Phone?
Live a better Life and get a Smartphone
And, the best way, in my opinion to upgrade is to talk to any of your friends who have already upgraded about what they are using and how they like it.
I know several, "uneducated" Cellphone users who even took their friends with them to their Cellular Carrier and had them look at the new phones and discuss the costs of the phones and the available services.
All of them ended up with a new and more powerful tool at a reasonable cost, that they now say they don't know how they did without.
The Movement to Smart Phones
Tablets, Smart Phones and Seniors
© 2013 Don Bobbitt