Seniors may not always be the most tech-savvy people, however, that doesn’t mean they aren’t using modern technology; Often times, guides and helpful technology tips for seniors are the best way to help them acclimate. According to some reports, almost 60 percent of seniors still report using the internet. Despite this, there are some challenges that they face when it comes to using internet and some devices. There are a number of ways that older individuals can learn to utilize the internet and smartphones to fit their needs while also staying safe.
Technology has become a part of almost everyone’s daily lives. However, for some people, using a smartphone or other device can prove to be difficult due to eyesight or other disabilities. Luckily there are changes that you can make to make using your computers and other technologies more simple.
Changing Font Size on Phone
Around two in five seniors report having a physical or health condition that makes reading difficult or challenging. Because of this, it can make using a smartphone difficult due to the small size of the font on the phone, but there are ways you can change this.
- For iPhones, you can change font size by going to the “Settings” icon, go to “General” toward the top of the page, click on “Accessibility”, and from there choose “Larger Text” and adjust the font size to your preferred preference.
- For Samsung Galaxy, open the “Settings” screen and go to the “Display” section, tap “Font Size” and choose the best font size for you.
You can also change the font and icon size on computers by going to display settings on Apple computers and changing it there. For Windows devices, right-click on the desktop and to to “View” and choose “Large Icons”.
Enabling Voice Commands
Voice commands for smartphones can make navigating your devices much easier. Turning on the voice-activated virtual assistant on iPhones, called Siri, can make texting, finding directions, calling, using the internet, and much more simple.
- To turn on Siri, go to “Settings” and click “General” and go to the “Siri” tab. Click the slider at the top and make sure it is green. Once enabled you can hold the home button for the device to listen to you. You can also turn on the “Hey Siri” setting, this allows you to just say the words “Hey Siri” for the device to start listening to you.
- For Android devices the voice app comes pre-installed in their smartphones.
- It should also be mentioned that Google has voice search commands available.
Taking a Class
It should be noted that there are a number of technology classes available for senior citizens to take to learn more about their devices and the internet. For example, the AARP holds classes for seniors on how to use these devices and navigate them more properly. Similarly, there online applications available to help seniors with using their devices. Also, if you have any small questions, asking younger people, especially grandchildren, can turn out to be one of the easiest and quickest solutions.
Online Safety Tips
Navigating technology more easily is not the only thing to consider when using the internet and your devices, you need to think about safety. Online scams and viruses are common on the internet now and if you do not protect yourself or your loved one, it can lead to criminals getting access to personal information.
Creating Strong Passwords
There’s one easy phrase to remember to understand how to make your passwords more secure: longer is stronger. When setting up an email, social media account, or other account that requires a password, it is more effective if the password is longer rather than shorter and more complex. Also, be sure to use different passwords for devices for each device and online account.
Using Secure Sites
When searching the web, be on lookout for untrustworthy and insecure sites. Most modern web browsers will show or tell you if you are entering an untrustworthy website. At the website address at the top, there will be a lock symbol. If you don’t see this, be weary of staying on the website and definitely do not enter personal information or click on links. These links may redirect the browser and begin downloading malware and viruses
Social media is fun and, in recent years, has become a regular part of day-to-day life. However, it is important to make sure that your information on these sites is protected and is only being shown to people you want to see it. Be sure to look over the privacy settings on social media accounts. For example, you may only want your friends and followers to see your posts which you can do by making your account private. Likewise, it is normally the safest option to not even enter some personal information like your phone number, address, full birth date, and other important information.
Overall, it is important to be aware of the threats that come with using the internet. Being cognizant of these things will help you identify and avoid them when they present themselves.
Technology is near unavoidable at this point. Whether it is a smartphone, tablet, computer, or other device, technology is becoming more ubiquitous by the day. However, for some people, such as senior citizens, technology may not always be the easiest thing to navigate, and, in some cases, can become unsafe. Learning more about the features that each device offers will help you or your loved one learn more about how to properly use these devices. Likewise, understanding the threats that surround the internet is important for keeping personal information safe.
One of the selling points of the internet is the ability to connect with people while offering tips for seniors to stay connected as well. At Landmark Senior Living, our residents have access to social events and gatherings to keep them happy and socially stimulated during the later chapters in their life. Similarly, our staff also provides them with the medical care that they require. If you are interested in learning more about Landmark, please visit our website and reach out to schedule a complimentary walkthrough of one of our facilities.