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Gadget Guidance

This section will explain a wealth of ‘techy terms’ written in a simple and easy to understand manor.

Wandering in Dementia: Keyring Tracker GPS Solution or Baggage?

feature-image-keyring-gps-solution

“Do keyring trackers actually help with wandering? Are keyring trackers discrete and durable? Should I get a keyring tracker for my loved one with dementia?”

I have so many questions …

And so do you. You’re probably wondering yourself whether they’re an answer to dementia-related wandering. Are they?

Well, to help you figure this out, I am sharing five reasons why I think keyring trackers are a good solution for your Nanny, just like mine.

As you go through my ideas, you’ll also learn:

  • Why keyring trackers are so popular
  • How keyring trackers facilitate collaborative care
  • What to look for in a high-quality keyring tracker
  • Where to buy the best GPS dementia-wandering trackers

1 - Keyring Trackers Address Dementia-Related Stigma

Yes. Dementia can be stigmatising.

People diagnosed with the condition are often assumed to be mentally challenged and are thus discriminated for it.

As such, conspicuous monitoring or tracking devices, which instantly give away that an individual has dementia, inadvertently expose patients to stigma and discourage their use.

However, with 60% of dementia patients likely to wander or get lost, monitoring devices are essential.

With such a high prevalence of people being worried I decided to develop a new way of monitoring via keyring trackers.

Keyring trackers can address dementia-related stigma by providing support to people with dementia, promoting awareness, and fostering understanding among the general public. 

While these devices cannot eliminate stigma entirely, they can help create a more inclusive environment for those living with dementia, including my own grandmother.

Below are 5 ways that I believe keyring trackers could help your loved ones:

  1. Empowering individuals with dementia: Keyring trackers can help those with dementia maintain their independence by ensuring they can easily find important items like keys, wallets, or phones.

    The tracker is so small that it is easily attached and won’t get in the way. In my opinion, this is one of its best features.

    In turn, this can easily reduce unhelpful feelings of anxiety and helplessness, leading to increased self-confidence and a more positive self-image for the wearer.

  2. Providing reassurance to caregivers: Caregivers can feel more at ease knowing that their loved ones have access to a tool that helps them stay organised and reduces the risk of losing important items.

    There’s nothing quite as frustrating as forgetting where I left my wallet, only to find it under a cushion on the couch.

    So, I want you to know that this type of reassurance can lead to better relationships between caregivers and people with dementia, as well as a more positive outlook on the condition overall.

  3. Raising awareness: The use of keyring trackers—and the fact that they’re obviously worn around your neck—can spark conversations about dementia and its challenges, which in turn can help to normalise the condition and raise awareness within your own community of family and friends.

    This has been particularly important for my family and I as we navigated this tricky situation.

  4. Encouraging empathy and understanding: As more people become familiar with the benefits of keyring trackers for those living with dementia, they may be more likely to empathize with the challenges that these individuals face.
  5. Promoting a supportive environment: By making it easier for people with dementia to participate in daily activities and maintain their independence, they are less likely to feel isolated.

    Keyring trackers contribute to a more inclusive and supportive environment, and I want every family to feel the same way we do.

By using discrete keyring trackers, you can go some way to solving the problems caused by dementia.

discrete keyring tracker by TechSilver

Here’s one such keyring tracker by TechSilver that features many attachment options to ensure maximum discretion. The tracker is wearable as:

  • A keyring
  • A pendant around the neck
  • Bag or pocket clip

Also, this tracker is barely noticeable with its compact size of 38 × 38 mm and features different colour options to seamlessly blend with any outfit you or your loved one may be wearing.

keyring tracker as a necklace

2 - Keyring Trackers Address Confused Wandering

Individuals with dementia often experience confusion. I have first-hand experience of this with my Nanny.

During this state, they can’t think clearly or recognise what’s happening around them, which causes them to wander in search of familiarity.

As a result, they won’t realise that they’re lost or think to contact emergency services or their carers. 

When this happens, their rescue depends on local authorities, neighbours, and other close contacts.

But what happens when wandering leads to distant locations where your loved one is virtually unknown? Perhaps out of town?

I have seen elderly people standing at ‘fake’ bus stops. They know they’re on their way to somewhere, but I know they’re not.

Confused wandering is a common behaviour in people with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. As such, keyring trackers can address this issue by helping to keep individuals safe and providing peace of mind to their caregivers.

If your person is subject to confused wandering then a keyring tracker may help by offering the following benefits:

  1. Real-time location tracking: Some keyring trackers come equipped with GPS or other location tracking technologies. This allows caregivers or family members to monitor the person’s whereabouts in real-time through a smartphone app or computer. I always have my phone on me so this was perfect for my needs.

    If the individual with dementia starts to wander, the caregiver can quickly locate them and guide them back to safety.

  2. Geofencing: Advanced keyring trackers may also offer a geofencing feature, which allows caregivers to establish a virtual boundary around a specific area.

    If the person with dementia goes beyond this pre-defined area, the caregiver will receive an alert, enabling them to respond quickly and ensure the person’s safety.

  3. Audible alarms: Some keyring trackers can be set to emit an audible alarm if the person with dementia moves too far from their designated area or if they press a button on the tracker.

    This can help alert nearby people, who can then assist in guiding the person back to safety.

  4. Reduced anxiety: Knowing that their loved one is carrying a keyring tracker can help reduce anxiety and stress for caregivers.

    This brought peace of mind to my family and allowed us to feel more confident in our ability to manage wandering incidents with Nanny.

  5. Encouraging independence: By providing a means to track and locate a person with dementia, keyring trackers can help support their independence and allow them to participate in activities that might otherwise be restricted due to concerns about wandering.

    Yes! I know that this will be reassuring news to many of you reading this article.

  6. Data collection and analysis: Some keyring trackers can collect data about wandering patterns and behaviors, which can then be analyzed by caregivers or healthcare professionals.

    This information can be used to better understand the person’s needs and develop strategies to minimise wandering risks

You’ll need a portable keyring tracker with an unlimited tracking range, long battery life, and frequent location updates to ensure a safe return.

keyring tracker on a lanyard

This keyring tracker by TechSilver features:

  • Up to 5-day battery life to give you a lengthy tracking window during an emergency situation
  • Unlimited tracking range (anywhere in the UK & Europe) to improve your chances of finding your loved one
  • Frequent location updates (from every 60 seconds) for accurate real-time monitoring of your loved one
  • Rugged build to ensure the device withstands even the toughest conditions
  • 24/7 support to ensure the device is always in working order

“Purchased the GPS tracker for my aunt who suffers from dementia. Very accurate tracking system and great features in locating her.”
Louise P

3 - Keyring Trackers Address Isolated Monitoring

One of the biggest challenges of isolated monitoring is that the carer can’t always be there to prevent wandering, which can happen at any time with the possibility of serious injury or death.

Keyring trackers solve this problem by enabling a more collaborative approach to care. They provide insight into wandering patterns and locations, aiding in the development of a cooperative wandering action plan; for instance, a plan featuring emergency contacts close to where your loved one often visits.

What is a Wandering Action Plan?

A wandering action plan is a proactive strategy designed to minimise risks associated with wandering behaviour in individuals with dementia or other cognitive impairments. 

The plan helps caregivers and family members manage and prevent wandering incidents while ensuring the safety of their loved ones. The key components of a wandering action plan can include:

  1. Identifying triggers and patterns: Observe and document any patterns or triggers that may cause wandering, such as times of day, specific locations, or particular events. 

  2. Securing the environment: Take measures to secure the living environment by installing locks on doors and windows, using childproof doorknob covers, setting up alarms or chimes to alert when doors are opened, and creating a safe and secure outdoor area if possible.

  3. Establishing routines: Develop a daily routine to provide structure and familiarity, which can help reduce anxiety and restlessness that may contribute to wandering. Regular physical activity and mental stimulation can also help mitigate wandering behaviour.

  4. Using technology: Purchase keyring trackers, GPS devices, or wearable tracking devices to monitor the location of the person with dementia. These tools can provide real-time location updates and send alerts if the individual leaves a predetermined safe zone.

  5. Preparing identification: Ensure that the person with dementia wears identification, such as a medical ID bracelet or necklace, that includes their name, emergency contact information, and details about their cognitive condition. This can help first responders and community members provide assistance if needed.

  6. Informing neighbours and community: Inform neighbours, local businesses, and community members about your loved one’s condition and wandering tendencies. Share a recent photograph and contact information, so they can contact you or emergency services if they spot the individual wandering.

  7. Developing a response plan: In case of a wandering incident, have a response plan in place that includes a list of emergency contacts, steps to follow when searching for the missing person, and details of who to notify (such as local law enforcement or organisations like an Alzheimer’s Association in your local area).

  8. Registering with local services: Register the person with dementia with local programs or services designed to help locate missing individuals, such as the local police department’s vulnerable persons registry.

By having a comprehensive wandering action plan in place, caregivers and family members can minimize risks associated with wandering and be better prepared to respond effectively if an incident occurs.

app-generated wandering pattern

Keyring trackers also enable collaborative monitoring through multi-user tracking applications. The device transmits its GPS coordinates directly to the tracking app, allowing family, friends, and anybody with access to keep tabs on your loved one.

Here’s one such tracking app by TechSilver that doesn’t limit the number of people who can check up on your loved one. It also works across platforms to minimise barriers to accessibility:

tracking application by TechSilver

4 - Keyring Trackers Are a Proactive Solution

Approximately 24 million people around the world have dementia and, by 2050, this number is expected to rise to 106 million.

With the possibility of 60% of this population wandering, there’s a growing need for more preventative solutions, such as keyring trackers with geofencing capabilities.

Keyring trackers let you create a predesignated safe zone for your loved ones and notify you when they enter or leave the area.

When your loved one steps outside the safe area, the tracker sends you an alert to ensure you can respond right away.

You can now be proactive with your methods by following these steps:

  1. Early intervention: Keyring trackers with GPS capabilities allow caregivers to monitor the real-time location of their loved ones, enabling them to intervene quickly if the person starts wandering or is in an unsafe area. This early intervention can prevent dangerous situations or accidents from happening.

  2. Reducing the risk of losing essential items: By attaching keyring trackers to important items like keys, wallets, or phones, people with dementia can easily locate these items using the tracker’s accompanying app or sound alerts. This reduces the likelihood of losing essential items and helps maintain their daily routines and independence.

  3. Establishing safe zones: Some keyring trackers have geofencing capabilities, allowing caregivers to set up safe zones around the individual’s home or other familiar areas. If the person with dementia wanders outside of these predefined boundaries, the caregiver will receive an alert, allowing them to act promptly and ensure the safety of their loved one.

  4. Encouraging independence: Keyring trackers help people with dementia maintain their independence by enabling them to find and keep track of essential items without relying on others. This proactive approach can contribute to improved self-confidence and a better quality of life.

  5. Providing peace of mind: Knowing that a keyring tracker is in place can give both the person with dementia and their caregivers peace of mind, knowing that they have a proactive tool to prevent wandering incidents or the loss of important items.

  6. Raising awareness: The use of keyring trackers can also raise awareness about dementia and its challenges, leading to greater understanding and empathy among the general public. This can help to promote a more inclusive environment for those living with dementia.

Below is one such tracker that lets you create multiple safe zones of up to 5 km wide and alerts multiple people should the device leave the safe zone. 

This means you, your family, and any carers can rely on the same safe zone for monitoring.

keyring tracker by TechSilver

It’s an excellent way to help your loved one in a way which respects their dignity and independence.

5 - Keyring Trackers Are Fast-Acting

In a recent survey, 2,000 people with loved ones who have dementia were asked how they responded to wandering incidents. 84% of them mentioned that they rely on GPS devices such as keyring trackers.

Why?

These devices are much faster at locating a lost loved one than other means, such as asking neighbours or friends and physically looking around.

Keyring trackers can help you retrieve items quickly. Much better than spending hours crawling around on your hands and knees looking for things under the furniture!

They’re designed to help users find misplaced items, such as keys, wallets, or phones, within a short period.

By using Bluetooth or radio frequency technology, keyring trackers can send signals to the accompanying app on a smartphone or emit a sound, guiding the user to the item’s location swiftly. Super handy!

For instance, TechSilver’s keyring tracker provides location updates every minute, enabling you to respond to directional changes as soon as they occur.

This effectiveness is why trackers are part of the police-recommended Herbert Protocol—a set of measures designed to intervene early and assist in the recovery of vulnerable persons who’ve wandered or gone missing.

These measures help the police narrow down a search and speed up recovery.

photo-snippet-keyring-gps-solution

Make Their Later Years More Independent With Technology

At TechSilver, we understand that technology holds the key to improving the quality of later life. In the UK, technology can help almost a quarter of the population—predicted to be over the age of 65 by 2035—live independent, happy lives.

This is why we are committed to providing the best in assistive technologies; from keyring trackers to fall detectors and easy-to-use mobile phones.

Our care devices come with:

  • Expert tech support that’s available seven days a week, including bank holidays
  • Multiple contact options including email, live chat, and phone
  • Quick response with most issues addressed within an hour
  • Free easy-to-follow setup videos

It’s also important to note that our devices don’t have a set-up fee. All we charge is a small subscription fee to cover data charges, phone calls, and access to the GPS tracking software.

Visit our store today to learn more about how we can help your closest ones.

Frequently Asked Questions

What signal do GPS keyring trackers use?

GPS trackers use the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) network. This network uses a variety of satellites to deliver microwave signals to GPS receivers, which provide data on location, speed, time, and direction.

At what stage of dementia does wandering occur?

Dementia-related wandering occurs in the middle stages of Alzheimer’s, where individuals experience confusion, memory loss, and possibly even delusions.

Wandering can occur at any stage of dementia, but it is more common during the middle (moderate) stage when confusion and disorientation become more pronounced and noticeable.

At this stage, family and friends may have difficulty recognising familiar surroundings or remembering the purpose of their actions, which can lead to wandering as they try to make sense of their environment or search for something familiar.

It can be an upsetting time for everyone involved.

However, it’s important to note that wandering behaviour can vary significantly among individuals and may not be present in every person with dementia.

The following table compares the various stages of dementia, characteristics and care needs as wandering increases.

StageCharacteristicsSupport and Care Needs
Early (Mild)Memory lapses, such as forgetting names or misplacing itemsEncourage independence, provide memory aids, establish routines, and promote social engagement
Middle (Moderate)Increased confusion, trouble recognizing people, difficulty with daily tasksSimplify tasks, provide supervision, maintain a safe environment, and ensure proper nutrition
Late (Severe)Loss of ability to communicate, problems with motor functions, difficulty recognizing loved onesFocus on comfort, provide assistance with daily care, monitor safety, and consider specialized care settings
AdvancedSevere cognitive decline, inability to move independently, difficulty swallowingProvide full assistance with daily activities, maintain dignity, and offer palliative care
End of LifeComplete dependency, minimal responsiveness, and increased susceptibility to infectionsProvide comfort care, manage pain, offer emotional support, and involve hospice care if needed

What are the early signs of wandering?

Common signs of wandering include:

  • Losing track of how to get to familiar locations
  • Returning from routine walks later than normal
  • Attempting to get “home” even when at home
  • Having trouble finding common locations, such as the bathroom, bedroom, or dining room
  • Becoming nervous or anxious in new and crowded environments

Hi, I'm Miles

I’m the founder of TechSilver, the world’s leading assistive tech specialists. My team has made these resources to help people care for their loved ones, so we hope we can help you today!

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Hi, I'm Miles

I’m the founder of TechSilver, the world’s leading assistive tech specialists. My team has made these resources to help people care for their loved ones, so we hope we can help you today!

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What Are the Seven Warning Signs of Dementia?

Dementia can affect people differently, and each patient shows symptoms in their own way.

However, there are a few common symptoms that they will most likely experience, especially in the early stages of the condition. 

These symptoms can start mild and can gradually get more severe as time goes on. It's often termed "mild cognitive impairment" (MCI), as the symptoms are not severe enough to be diagnosed as dementia.

Dementia is not a natural part of ageing. It is very important that you talk to your GP if you or your loved ones are showing any signs of cognitive impairment.

Memory Loss 

The most common symptom of dementia is memory loss. This is because dementia is caused by damage to the brain, and this damage can affect areas of the brain involved in creating and retrieving memories.

It is completely normal to occasionally forget appointments, people’s names or where you put your car keys, only to remember a short while later. However, for dementia patients this can be much more persistent, and can affect their day to day life greatly. They may find themselves forgetting things much more often, and having more difficulty eventually remembering these things down the line. 

This can be difficult to deal with for both the person themselves and for people around them.

Wandering 

Dementia can often lead to losing track of dates, seasons and even the passage of time for the person living with the condition. Sometimes they may forget where they are or how they got there, leading them to become lost or confused about their location. This can happen at any stage during the disease. 

According to the dementia society, 6 in 10 people living with dementia will wander at least once; many do so repeatedly. This can cause a massive strain on those taking care of them as the worry of not knowing where they are or where they are going can be stressful.

Difficulty Completing Tasks

People living with dementia often find it hard to complete daily tasks, such as taking daily medication or making a cup of tea. This difficulty with completing familiar tasks could happen wherever they are without any warning and can become increasingly frustrating for them, contributing to angry outbursts and much more stress.

Issues with Speaking or Writing 

They may find themselves having issues following or joining a casual conversation, stopping in the middle of a sentence, repeating themselves regularly or struggling with basic vocabulary. This might begin with forgetting the name of a common object such as a watch, or getting them confused entirely, for example calling a ‘watch’ a ‘hand clock’.

Poor Judgement 

An individual with dementia’s judgement and reasoning can be heavily impacted depending on how far the condition has progressed. A person living with dementia may have issues with their perception also. For instance, they may not recognise a medical problem that needs attention, or be unable to correctly prepare for the day’s temperature (for example, leading to them wearing heavy clothing on a hot day). This is usually the first indicator that a patient may be beginning to suffer from memory loss.  

Changes in Mood

It is common to feel down or moody from time to time, but when these feelings are happening more often it can indicate that something deeper is going on. Dementia patients often experience mood swings, switching from calmness to tears to anger for no apparent reason. This can be due to many reasons, such as frustration in their loss of abilities, to sometimes feeling scared or confused. Mood swings can also be a signal that the individual is in pain.

Loss of Initiative

It isn’t uncommon for dementia sufferers to seem uninterested in friends, family or their favourite activities. While many of us can admit to feeling bored of mundane daily activities, such as housework, we can usually force ourselves to regain the initiative. A person with dementia may become passive and distant and could require a lot more coercion to become more involved in an activity or task.

Conclusion

There are many symptoms of dementia, as the condition is wide, varied, and often different for each person living with it. If you or a loved one is experiencing any of the above symptoms, it’s always best to speak to your GP and get a check-up to make sure everything is ok!

Thanks for reading, we hope our tips help you!

Why not check out some of our other useful pieces?

Fall Prevention in the Elderly - The Ultimate Guide

Which is the Best GPS Tracker? - Ultimate Guide to GPS Tracking

How Technology Can Make Travel And Adventure Stress Free

Travel and Adventure Stress Free

Make Travel and Adventure Stress Free

As a wise person once said, “travel is the only thing you buy which makes you richer”. Whether it’s a swift city break or a lengthy adventure, technology has revolutionised it’s every aspect.  

 

Researching, Planning & Booking 
 

From meticulous planners to the more spontaneous, technology provides many ways to get the most from your trip. Travel blogs and guides are a great place to start when seeking inspiration. Many people have already experienced what you’re looking for, so why not utilise their knowledge? Try searching online e.g. ‘Italy travel blog’ or ‘South America trekking guide’. 

 

Finding the ideal mix of hotel and flights can be laborious. When travelling Indonesia, ‘Booking.com’ was an easy method of finding where we next wanted to stay, with its simple interface and helpful rating system. If you’re a fan of luxury boutique hotels, then ‘MrandMrsSmith.com’ is ideal for finding those unique international getaways. Flights can make or break a holiday, Skyscanner.com helps find the cheapest available, or if budget isn’t an issue, Privatefly.com compares private jet charters for the perfect aviation combination. 

 

Dining & Activities 
 

Ever find yourself walking aimlessly looking for ‘the right’ restaurant? Unfortunately this often ends in disappointment, as appearances can be deceiving. Why not use websites like tripadvisor.com or Google to discover the best eateries in your area or read a restaurant’s reviews before sitting down? Trip advisor is also a great way to learn about the local activities, from museums to mountain biking.  

 

Navigation & Communication 

Finding your way can be difficult enough at home, let alone in foreign countries with unfamiliar roads and sometimes confusing signs. Luckily technology is there to help out… 

 

Available both online and as an app, ‘Google Maps’ allows you to mark points of interest before you travel, plan routes and navigate public transport. You can pre-download an area’s digital map before travelling, avoiding pricey ‘roaming’ fees for international data. If you’re planning to use your smartphone abroad, then make sure you check data charges with your network provider or only use Wi-Fi and turn mobile data off.   

 

Google translate (available via the free app or online), translates from or to over 100 languages; very handy when hand signals will not suffice.  

 

Useful Gadgets 

 

Ereaders are a great way to enjoy your favourite books without weighing down your suitcase. They have ink-like screens so the sun’s glare won’t interfere with your reading. A portable power bank is a light device filled with electricity, useful if you run out of juice in the middle of nowhere and want to snap that sunset. ‘Anker’ are a good quality manufacturer. Gadgets are ideal to make Travel and Adventure Stress Free.

 

Travelling will always be about switching off from everyday life and enjoying the moment, although technology can help discover those moments and ensure your trip is the best it can be!  

 

Make sure you check out our homepage by clicking here to see all the easy to use technology products that could make Travel and Adventure Stress Free.

Guide To Selling Online

Guide to selling online

The TechSilver Guide to Selling Online

Whether it’s finally time to clean out a cluttered house and get rid of those things the charity shop won’t take or get some extra cash for weekends away. Trading your old things online is not only kinder to the environment than throwing them away, but often enjoyable and addictive! 

Ways to sell 

Which platform you choose to sell your item/s on and how you sell them depends on the answer to a few questions; is the item valuable? Are you bothered about getting the best possible price or do you just want rid? 

As a general rule, higher value items that require more images and a lengthier description (like classic cars or furniture) are better suited to websites like Ebay or Gumtree, whilst lower value items like bric-a-brac and some clothing may be better suited to selling apps like Schpock or Depop. Etsy is also great for selling home-made craft items.  

Tips for selling 

Pictures speak a thousand words, so make sure you take plenty. Ensure they’re light and bright with no clutter and from plenty of different angles, including any blemishes or scuffs so the buyer knows what to expect. Make sure you write an informative description that’s not too long-winded but covers all the key areas. Bullet points are a great way to make your listing easy to digest, make sure you include key info like dimensions to save unnecessary contact from prospective buyers. 

Use creative language without being deceptive, after all one women’s rubbish is another’s treasure. I recently sold a dresser / seat hybrid furniture monstrosity on Gumtree that was worthless, but due to my enthusiastic description, on arrival the prospective purchaser loved it! Use the old sales tactic of ‘features and benefits’. This isn’t an ‘old haggard chest of drawers’, it’s a ‘characterful mahogany storage dream that oozes Victorian charm with plenty of room for all your items’… see what I mean? 

Pricing 

Depending on the platform you use, sales can be a fixed price or via an auction. People will often try to bring fixed prices down when the contact you, so factor that in from the beginning. With an auction, ensure you set a high enough reserve price, as often people wait until the last hour to start bidding which hampers the winning bid. 

Security 

Problems are uncommon, however If it’s a large item that can’t be posted then it’s likely the person will be coming to your house. If you’re a bit unsure then speak to them on the phone and gauge how you feel before sending your address. 
 

Payment 

Many platforms like Ebay and Depop offer integrated payment systems, so no worries about receiving your money. If the person is paying in cash, be sure to check their notes are genuine. PayPal is a great way to receive money as the buyer has some protection (e.g.  if you didn’t provide the goods) and you only need their email address to send. 

 
Feel free to contact the TechSilver.co.uk team for more information on a Guide To Selling Online

What is a Smartphone / Tablet? What is a Desktop / Laptop? – An Introduction to the Digital World

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What is a Tablet? / What is a Smartphone? / Laptop or Desktop?

Ever wondered the answers? Our resident tech expert Miles gives you an introduction to the digital world and what it all means…

Tablets to tethering , Wi-Fi to wearables, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the abundance of techy terms in use today. You may already be familiar with the benefits technology has to offer, but knowing where to start is often difficult. Whether looking to keep in touch with loved ones, type up your memoirs or research your next adventure, there’s a device suited to your needs and lifestyle. As an expert in helping people with technology, I’ll attempt to guide you through the digital world… 

Desktop vs Laptop  

What you’d traditionally associate with a computer, desktops are made up of separate parts. A tower (which houses the computer’s ‘brain’), a monitor (viewing screen), a keyboard and mouse. Having an external keyboard makes them more ergonomic for typing than laptops, whilst being able to interchange accessories (such as a more comfortable mouse or bigger screen), means they’re easier to be customised for a specific need e.g. sensory impairment. However, as desktops are fixed to one location, this makes them less convenient for quick tasks and so are better suited to jobs that will take longer to complete, (like typing up those memoirs).  

Sometimes called ‘Notepads’, laptops are computers that can be folded up and taken with you, made up from a screen on one half, and a mouse and keyboard on the other. Their portability allows you to carry out tasks wherever you please, making them more convenient than desktops for typing a quick email or booking a hotel room. Although portable, they’re often still too cumbersome for your handbag, so may be more than you require if rarely typing for long periods. 

Tablet vs Smartphone  

One of the differences between computers and portable ‘smart’ devices (like smartphones and tablets) is the ability to install ‘apps’. Short for applications, they’re downloadable computer programs ranging from travel and puzzles to news and music, providing information, communication and entertainment at your fingertips. Because smart gadgets rely on a touch-screen for interaction instead of a mouse and keyboard, millions of apps are available to simplify and enrich daily tasks.  

Tablet computers (often referred to as iPads from market leader Apple), have become popular in the digital world due to their thin and lightweight design. They’re perfect for curling up on the sofa or long travels, offering all the features of a computer with added convenience. Ideal for comfortable leisure use; looking up info online, ordering gifts for the family or unwinding with your favourite crossword is a breeze.   

The fact tablets have a camera on both the front and rear means that thanks to video calling, the faces of your loved ones are just a few taps away (which I’ll cover in more detail next week). The main downside of tablets is typing through a touch-screen, so writing long emails will take that much longer, (although you can easily pick up tablet accessories like a QWERTY keyboard).  

The days of mobile phones resembling a building brick are long gone, with smartphones offering transportable access to the digital world. Due to their screen usually not exceeding around 5″ (12cm) in diagonal width, they’re better suited to communication and navigation rather than admin or typing tasks. They’ve got near enough the same choice of apps as a tablet, although smartphone-only apps like ‘Whatsapp’ have brought my family closer together, with three generations sharing pictures, videos and messages from anywhere on earth.  

You may be asking ‘why would someone have a smartphone and a tablet’ as many people do. The answer is simply portability and the ability to call people. Furthermore, with excellent cameras, having a smartphone in your bag means you’ll never miss snapping that beautiful sunset or family moment.

Which one is best for me?  

With the lines between these devices blurring by the day, you can carry out most digital tasks with any of the above. The best for you depends on your lifestyle, budget and requirement for portability. With thousands to choose from, luckily there’s an increasing amount of devices designed specifically to be easy and intuitive. Technophobes fear not, access to the digital world may be simpler than you think…  

Easy to use Technology

Manufacturers have woken up to the demand for devices that don’t drive you crazy trying to work out how to use them. We specialise in easy to use technology products that are simple and intuitive, allowing you to enjoy gadgets without the fuss.

Click here to browse our best-selling easy to use Smartphone

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The Ultimate Guide to Understanding Apps: Part 1 – What are they and why do they matter?

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 Introduction

This free multi-part guide will walk you through the world of smartphone and tablet apps, explaining how they can help make your lifestyle easier and more enjoyable.

We’ll explore the various categories of ‘apps’ that offer benefits including making each day more fun, making living alone much easier or generally saving time, effort and money!

As we speak and work with many people enjoying later lifestyle, we encounter a huge variety of opinions and attitudes towards apps, smartphones and technology in general.

Some of the common questions we’re asked include…

“What are apps?”, “Why do I need apps?”, “Apps aren’t for my age group, are they?”
“What are apps for Android or Apple?”, “How do I install an app?”, “Are apps safe and secure?”

We’re here to answer some of those unanswered questions and explain what ‘apps’ could do for you, regardless of your technological know-how!

‘APP’ : Our Definition

what is an app apps exaplined

 

An App or ‘Application’ is a computer program designed to solve a problem, from keeping up with friends and family, to telling you what song you’re hearing and everything in between.

Traditionally downloaded to and installed on a portable device like a tablet (e.g. iPad) or smartphone (e.g. Doro 8040, Apps sometimes cost around the same as a cup of coffee, however the vast majority are completely free to use as many times as you like!

 

Why do I need ‘apps’ ?

why do i need apps what do apps do what can apps do

 

“Although having a smartphone or tablet may not be essential, carrying access to endless information, entertainment and useful tools in your pocket can often lead to an easier, more entertaining and more enriched lifestyle!”

Miles Waghorn – TechSilver Founder

How could I benefit from ‘apps’ ?

what can apps do why get apps why get a smartphone what is a smartphone good for?

Explaining the benefits of ‘Apps’ at on of our Free ‘Later Life Matters’ Exhibitions

 

In the not too distant past, if you wanted to take a picture, you’d need to buy a camera. If you wanted to find out current affairs, you’d need to buy a newspaper. If you wanted to see the faces of your loved ones, you’d need a car (or plane ticket). If you got lost, you’d need a road map and if you wanted to check your balance, you’d need to visit your bank.

You get the picture…

 

How do apps help?

what can apps do why get apps why get a smartphone what is a smartphone good for?

One of our smartphone customers at another Later Life Matters event in Uppingham, UK

A smartphone with the right combination of apps means that what used to require a large range of purchases, possessions, time, effort and money, can now be achieved with something that weighs less than ¼ a bag of sugar, is smaller than most people’s wallet or purse and costs less than you’d expect.

That’s possible by one device combining a camera, newspaper, satellite navigation system, music player, and many more, whilst allowing you to video call your family anywhere on earth (free), transfer money securely, listen to your favorite music, the list goes on and on…

 

How do I get apps?

In the next part of our ‘Ultimate Guide’ we will introduce how to safely and securely search for, sort through and get hold of ‘apps’ to use with your smartphone or tablet. Click here to receive the next part FREE: http://bit.ly/FreeGuidance

 

Which apps should I get?

We’ve sifted through the thousands of apps available, selected our favourites and categorised them, so you can pick and choose the ones that suit your lifestyle.

Throughout the following chapters, we’ll go through our categorised recommendations. To receive the next chapters of this FREE ultimate guide in your email inbox, click this link: http://bit.ly/FreeGuidance

 

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