(BPT) — Generation X and Millennials get credit for being the most tech-savvy generations, but a growing group of baby boomers are demonstrating that the generation gap has nothing to do with digital know-how. Folks 50 and older are embracing technology to help them age more gracefully than ever.
Whether they’re using devices to hear better in challenging situations, or social media to reconnect with friends they’ve not seen since high school, baby boomers are demonstrating they’re not afraid to use technology to make life easier. Here are a handful of ways boomers are using technology:
• Coping with auditory challenges — In our noisy, fast-paced society we commonly encounter many situations — such as a business meeting, family gathering or phone call — in which hearing may be difficult, even for people who don’t need a specialized hearing aid. Savvy boomers are using a Bluetooth-enabled amplification device to discretely improve volume and clarity in a variety of challenging environments. Personal Sound Amplifiers from Sound World Solutions look like any other sleek, high-tech mobile phone headset, but also provide amplification boomers can easily adjust and control themselves. Users can choose between three preset amplification settings or use a smartphone app to personalize the device. Visit www.soundworldsolutions.com to learn more.
• Relationship management — Four in five people age 50 to 75 are active on social media, and of them 75 percent are on Facebook, according to a survey by technology security company McAfee. Boomers use social media — including professional sites like LinkedIn — to reconnect with friends from high school or college, maintain contact with family and friends, date, build professional connections and develop personal interests.
• Managing investments — Approaching retirement can make boomers feel driven to maximize their investment returns. Yet not everyone has access to or can afford working with a financial planner. Many boomers use online investing tools to fill knowledge gaps and build their nest eggs. From in-depth information on tax-deferred or tax-free investment products to online brokerage accounts, technology has made it easier than ever for the 50-plus set to save toward retirement.
• Catching up on their reading — Changes in vision are a natural part of aging, and it’s not uncommon for people to need some help reading their favorite novels. Yet traditional compensation tactics, like wearing reading glasses or choosing large-print books and periodicals, shout “fogey.” E-readers, however, are cool — and allow boomers to enjoy their favorite reading material at the type size that’s easiest for them to read.
• Staying healthier for longer — Boomers have rewritten history in many ways, and not the least among them is their determination to stay as active and healthy as possible into their old age. An array of fitness technology — from pedometers to in-home gym equipment that tracks BMI and heart rate — is helping boomers achieve their fitness and wellness goals.
From devices that improve hearing clarity to online tools that help them better manage their finances, baby boomers are using technology to ensure they enjoy life and remain active and healthy well into their golden years.