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Gadget Guidance

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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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

Making Your Home Dementia Friendly

For someone with dementia, living at home can help them to maintain a certain level of independence, whilst also offering a level of comfort a care home doesn’t.

By making some minor changes to the home you can create a safer space, whilst still maintaining a physically active and mentally stimulating environment 

In this article, we are going to be talking about how you can adapt your property to assist people with dementia who want to remain living at home and for friends and family members who are supporting them.

Lighting

Adequate lighting not only makes sense in terms of being able to see properly, but it can also aid in keeping track of time and understanding where you are in your home. Allowing natural light to shine through windows helps the person living with dementia to more clearly see the difference between night and day. Better lighting eliminates dark areas and shadows too, which can be a big trip hazard. Dimmer switches and motion sensor lights are also a great way to control the level of light to suit personal preference.

Tips:

  • Remove obstructive blinds or shutters in favour of more lightweight curtains, allowing as much natural light to shine through as possible 
  • Ensure windows are clean
  • Motion sense lights can be used for when someone gets up in the night 
  • Ensure bedrooms can be made as dark as is possible/safe, as this encourages better sleep
  • Use brighter bulbs in lamps if it is safe to do so
  • Consider relocating plug sockets for easier access

Furniture

Many dementia patients report feelings of disorientation and confusion with vision. The colours and shapes of furniture can help the person with dementia to navigate their home more easily.

Strong patterns such as florals and stripes can be confusing, so opting for simpler, blockier designs in bright and contrasting colours can make items of furniture much easier to see and navigate around. If you decide to replace or remove any furniture then try to maintain the original layout of the room, as it is easier to navigate through surroundings when they are familiar with the layout.

Tips:

  • Supportive chairs with arms are much easier to get in/ out of 
  • Try not to change the layout too often
  • If the furniture is heavily patterned think about replacing or covering it with a blanket 
  • Opt for furniture in a contrasting colour to the floor so that they can easily be identified

Flooring 

For a person living with dementia, being able to walk freely around is a massive part of their independence. Ensuring that there are no wonky floorboards or untucked carpets allows individuals to walk more confidently around the home without risking a trip or fall.

It’s also important to consider the options carefully when choosing carpet and rug patterns, as dementia can alter how they see things to a greater extent. Shiny floors can look wet, speckles or tiles can look like rubbish on the floor, and dark coloured flooring can look like holes which they will then try to avoid walking on. 

This is something to take into consideration, especially on the stairs. Ensuring the steps have a colour contrast to the walls can also help to avoid accidents. 

Tips:

  • Remove mats to avoid trips
  • Mark edges of stairs and steps with bright tape or especially designed stair edging called ‘nosing’ 
  • Ensure all lamp wires and cables are tucked away and won’t be a trip hazard

Bathroom 

There are also many safety features you can install in the bathroom to limit hazards. For example, prevention plugs that release water down the drain if a bath is left running for too long and temperature checking alarms that will notify you if the water is too hot.

Another good idea is installing assistance rails next to the bath and toilet in contrasting easily identifiable colours, as well as contrasting toilet seats. These products can help individuals use the bathroom as independently as possible.

Tips:

  • Try to avoid distracting clutter, keep the space clean and simple
  • Use towels and toilet rolls in contrasting colours for easy access
  • Place non-slip mats in spots they’re likely to walk over
  • Ensure locks can be easily opened from the outside in case of an emergency

Organisation 

Ensuring your home is organised is essential for those living with dementia to feel at ease. Clutter can lead to confusion and distraction. It is also important that items are put back where they belong so that patients can find their belongings.

Tips:

  • Put labels on cupboards, wardrobes and drawers for easy identifiable access
  • Keep important items such as wallet, keys and glasses in a clear plastic box
  • Ensure that someone knows where all the important items or documents are kept in case of emergencies 
  • Leave bathroom and kitchen doors open when not in use so they are easily located

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

Apps For Older People – Guide to Apps for Elderly

Click here to skip to the apps list


What do we know about Apps for Older People?

We’ve spent years working with older people; spreading the knowledge to understand and enjoy the benefits technology, smartphones, tablets and apps can offer. Seniors are sometimes the least likely to be confident using technology, but often problems encountered during later life can be improved or solved through apps for older people. We’ve sifted through thousands of apps for both Android and iOS (Apple) devices to compile the ultimate guide on apps for elderly people.

Not quite sure what apps are? Read our FREE ‘Ultimate Guide to Understanding Apps’

 

The world is changing…

As the populations of many Western countries age on an unprecedented scale, aging and our attitude towards it is changing. Over 18% of the UK are aged 65+ and Over 3% are 85+ (ONS), whilst in the USA there’s over 49m people aged 65+ (Census).

 

These aren’t just ‘apps for older people’

The traditional perception of being ‘old’ simply isn’t the same any more, as living longer has opened the doors to enjoy many more of life’s benefits. My grandfather is 92, very physically fit and uses his tablet computer daily. However some people can be in their early 60’s, suffer from chronic health problems and be very unlikely to use technology; which is more of a traditional stereotype of a senior. My point is that although the following apps may be useful for seniors, they’re certainly not restricted to a certain age group or are just ‘apps for older people’.

 

Reasons apps for the elderly may help

  • Enjoying the golden years through leisure and travel
  • Helping to stay entertained and occupied
  • Combating loneliness and isolation by keeping in touch with friends and family
  • Helping to manage health conditions and medication management
  • Keeping the brain active and staying intellectually challenged
  • Overcoming a lack of mobility or ability to leave the house
  • Saving money and getting the best deals

 

Isn’t using apps expensive?

In short, the answer is no, but it can be if you don’t know what you’re doing. Most apps for Android and Apple (iOS) devices are free, or have a nominal fee like 65p. ‘How do they make their money then?’ I hear you ask. Well often it’s through showing adverts around the edge of the app or before you open it. Other times it’s through something called the ‘freemium’ model, which means the basic version of the app is free, but you’ll need to pay to access all the ‘bells and whistles’, often known as ‘premium features’.

 

OK, so how do I avoid apps costing me money?

Well firstly you can ofcourse use the free versions of them instead of the premium ones, which is usually not much different if you can put up with the odd advert. However if you’re like my grandmother and absolutely loath adverts with a passion, then why not pay a little more for the premium version?

The other way using apps can end up costing you money is through excessive streaming using mobile data.

 

What is ‘streaming’ and why is it useful? 

Streaming is the process of consuming something (for example a TV show) by it being sent in little chunks as you watch it, instead of waiting for the entire thing to be sent to your device before being able to enjoy it. It’s like a restaurant being able to bring your courses out as you eat them, not having to wait for dessert to be made before tucking in to your starter.

Streaming means that you can enjoy things like radio, music, films, TV shows, videos and more whilst out and about using mobile data. Most entertainment apps use streaming to allow you to use them.

 

There’s two different ways to access the internet on your smartphone or tablet… 

Wi-Fi: You probably already know what this is, but it stands for ‘Wireless Fidelity’ and essentially means access to the internet within a certain area (like your home, a coffee shop or hotel etc.) It’s nearly always free to use and means you can stream as much music, TV etc. as you like without any additional charges

Mobile Data: This is accessing the internet through telephone masts, it’s also wireless like Wi-Fi but is not restricted to a specific geographic location. e.g. if you went for a walk across your town centre, you wouldn’t lose signal like you would with Wi-Fi.

 

So how would using apps for streaming with mobile data cost me money?

Mobile data costs money and you’ll usually have an allowance of mb [megabytes] (the unit that internet data is measured in), in your monthly mobile plan, or you’ll be charged a fixed amount for every mb if you’re on pay as you go. The real expense comes when you exceed your monthly allowance of mobile data, as many network providers (like Vodafone, O2, EE etc.) charge extortionate amounts for every mb used over and above this.

 

And how do I stop my mobile company charging me extra?

First of all, it’s worth seeing if you’re on the right mobile plan or contract. If you’re someone that would like to catch up with TV on the bus or use your smartphone to never get lost again, then you’ll need a fair amount of mobile data in your package…

  1. Discover current usage: Find out how much you’re currently using (if any). Either log in to your account online or call your provider and ask for your ‘data usage’ for the last few months
  2. Find the best deal: Shop around for a cheap plan with enough data, minutes for calling and texts. I recommend using comparison websites like Uswitch or MoneySavingExpert. (Remember you’re looking for a ‘SIM-only plan’, where you’re paying for using the phone, rather than the phone itself)
  3. Choose the right one for you: Choose a plan with enough mobile data for you. 2GB+ should be plenty for moderate mobile data use (a few hours of streaming a week). Remember you can always downgrade if you’re not using anywhere near your allowance.
  4. Set up alerts: Most mobile providers will send you a text message to warn you when you’re getting near your monthly allowance. If you’re really worried about going over you can always contact your mobile provider and ask them to put a cap on it. This will stop you using mobile data when you’ve hit your limit.

 

“Don’t let worries about data charges get in the way of benefiting from apps. By following the advice above, you’ll easily have an inexpensive and enjoyable app experience.”

Miles Waghorn, TechSilver Founder

 

Apps for Older People: The List 

As there’s so many to choose from, we’ve put these apps for older people in to categories

(click the links below and jump to that section)


Music & Radio: Apps for Older People 


TuneIn

Available on Android + Apple devices

With the invention and worldwide spread of the internet, radio has gone from a crackly reception and carefully turning dials, to almost endless choice from across the globe. TuneIn gives free access to over 100,000 radio stations in every corner of the planet. Moroccan Jazz? no problem, Ecuadorian folk? Why not, or even just your favourite BBC stations, wherever you are, in your pocket.

radio app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • A ridiculously large choice to suit every taste
  • Easily access ‘favourites’ with a list of the stations you love
  • Completely free to download and use, with a premium version offering zero ads

Click here for our high quality, simple to use internet radio from Roberts

 

Spotify

Available on Android + Apple devices

The days of needing to buy vinyl, cassettes and even CD’s are long behind us. Replacing their more expensive, physical older brothers are digital music files or ‘MP3’s. Thanks to streaming (explained above), you don’t even have to own the song or album to listen to it wherever and whenever you please.

For a monthly subscription of £9.99 you can listen to over 30 millions tracks on the move, you can search by artist, song name and more, whilst being able to create playlists, mixtapes with all your favourite tracks in e.g. I’ve got one called ‘Evening relaxation’. There’s also a free version with adverts and simply the ability to listen to randomly selected songs by a certain artist.

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Our Favourite Features

  • Listen to over 30m songs, anytime, anywhere
  • Much more cost effective than buying MP3’s or CDs 
  • Accessible across any digital device. (computer, smartphone, tablet + more)

TV & Film: Apps for Older People 


TV Catchup

Available on Android + Apple devices

This deceivingly named app for elderly actual allows you to watch 30 UK freeview TV channels live on your smartphone or tablet. So whether you’re in the kitchen, hotel or out and about, you’ll never miss your favourite show. We recommend connecting to wireless internet (Wi-Fi) where possible with this app, to avoid extra charges for mobile data.

tv app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Watch TV anywhere
  • Completely free to download and use
  • Only one advert is shown before you watch

 

Sky Go

Available on Android + Apple devices

Available to all Sky TV customers, it’s similar to TV catchup in that it lets you watch any of the channels in your package live, wherever you want. It even includes sports, movies and box sets.

TV App for Seniors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Included in your existing Sky TV package (at no extra cost)
  • Download shows to watch when there’s no internet (e.g. planes or trains)
  • Control your Sky box remotely on the move (e.g. setting something to record)

 

Most UK TV companies have their own catchup service, where you can watch live and/or catch up with your favourite shows…

  • BBC: BBC iPlayer
  • ITV: ITV Player
  • Channel 4: 4OD
  • Channel 5: My 5

 


Communication & Staying in touch: Apps for Older People 


As we live in an increasingly globalised world, it’s becoming far more likely that the people emotionally close to us, are physically further away. Technology and these apps for older people thankfully allow us to speak, see each other, share pictures and more, inexpensively and from anywhere in the world. 


Whatsapp:

Available on Android + Apple devices

Whatsapp has undoubtedly brought my family closer together. It’s the world’s largest messaging app with over 13bn active monthly users. It allows you to share messages, pictures, videos and more with either one person, or multiple people at once in a ‘group chat’. It also allows you to make free video or phone calls with anyone, all you need as an internet connection.

(Read this guide on what a video call is or this guide on how to do it)

It’s brought my family closer together by creating a space where 3 generations of us can share moments and keep in touch, without needing to pick up the phone and call eachother regularly. It enables everyone, no-matter how busy their lifestyle to stay in contact with the elderly people in their life, and vice versa. it’s especially useful if your family and friends live overseas, as you avoid making costly phone calls and can catch up for as long as you want with absolutely no cost.

messaging app for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Send messages, pictures and more to anyone from anywhere, completely free!
  • Have unlimited video and audio calls without using up the minutes in your allowance
  • Whatsapp web enables you to use Whatsapp from your computer

 

Skype

Available on Android + Apple devices

Bringing face to face conversation to the masses, Skype has been the world’s leading video calling app for many years. Owned by Microsoft, this free app allows you to make unlimited voice or video calls to anyone in the world for absolutely nothing.

Unlike Whatsapp, Skype does not require a mobile phone number and sim card to function, therefore can be used on regular tablets and computers as well as smartphones and tablets with a sim card.

You can also have conversations with up to 9 other people at the same time, this is great if you want to catch up as a family or with multiple friends at the same time, whilst in different places.

skype app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Free and unlimited video and audio calling to anywhere in the world
  • Accessible on computers, tablets, smartphones and more
  • Have group chats with up to 9 other people at once

 

Facebook

Available on Android + Apple devices

If Facebook were a country, it would be the biggest on earth, with over 1.8 billion active monthly users. Facebook has developed from a way to keep in touch with friends and family, to be the ultimate information and communication hub. Not only does it enable you to reconnect with old friends in just a few clicks, but most public figures and organisations are represented, so visiting their page offers updates as well as pictures, reviews and more.

Facebook is a great app for older people to help stay updated with the lives of loved ones. If they live a long distance away or you don’t often speak on the phone, Facebook helps you stay in the loop with updates like holiday pictures, career progress and even their love life. 

Millions of local and international groups enable you to share information, experiences and advice with those that have a common interest. Just use the search bar to discover them e.g. ‘Cheltenham knitting’.

Events are easier thanks to Facebook. Create a public or private event page and invite your guests, then use the page to share information with them and receive updates e.g. RSVP, great for family events and organising social meet ups.  

facebook app for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Keep updated on what friends and family are doing
  • Reconnect with old friends from school, work and more
  • Organise / attend events and share knowledge with like-minded people

 


Travel & Adventure: Apps for Older People 


For many people, their golden years are an opportunity to visit and explore the places they’d always dreamed of. Responsibilities like your career, family and financial restrictions can become less demanding during retirement, offering time to enjoy new people, places and cultures. This section is dedicated to apps for older people that want to see what the world has to offer!


Google Translate

Available on Android + Apple devices

We’ve all been there. Embarrassingly trying to explain something to your waiter or hotel receptionist in pigeon English, whilst they look at you with a bemused face. Well thankfully technology and apps allow us to overcome these language barriers. Google translate is by far the slickest and easiest to use translation app, and best of all it’s completely free!

With over 102 languages available, this app for adventurous older people allows you to type or talk in to your device and it will translate as you do so, so no need to awkwardly wait until the end of your sentence. it’s also got some incredible features like having 59 languages stored on the device that will translate, even when there’s no internet connection available.

You can even hold your device’s camera up to words in a foreign language and it will show you an automatic translation on the screen e.g. restaurant menus

 

translation apps for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Easily overcome language barriers whilst travelling
  • Conversation mode where it can listen and translate 2 languages simultaneously
  • Offline mode enabling written translation with no internet connection

 

Tripit

Available on Android + Apple devices

One of the most stressful things about travelling is having the right documents. Sifting through that A4 plastic wallet in your bag looking for the car hire reference number, realising you printed off an email that’s 14 pages long and you had to remortgage your house to afford the printing costs.

Tripit is a great app for older people that solves these issues in an ingeniously simple fashion. Just forward all the booking confirmation emails for your trip to an email address provided in the app, and it will organise all the information for you an an easy to digest and chronological order. Best of all, it’s all in the palm of your hand through your smartphone, so no need to kill those trees and print loads of paper out.

This could include airport parking, flights, airport lounges, car hire, transfers, hotels, event tickets, excursions and more.

travel app for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Organise your travel itinerary in one place
  • Have all your booking references and codes to hand, instead of sifting through paperwork
  • Kind to the environment, no more unnecessary printing.

 

Uber

Available on Android + Apple devices

If you haven’t already heard about them in the news, Uber have transformed the way the world gets a taxi. Simply tell the app where you are (or use it’s inbuilt location finder to do it for you), and where you’re going. The app will give you an estimate of how much the fare will cost, before showing you exactly how long until your ride arrives, who’s driving, what car they’re driving and more. 

We’ve probably all been ripped off by taxi drivers abroad or failed to explain where we’re going. Uber is an ideal app for older people as it takes the hassle, confusion and danger out of getting a taxi whilst on holiday. It’s also usually cheaper than getting the local taxi’s too! Best of all, it’s all automatically charged to your credit or debit card, which is securely linked to your app, so no need to pay the driver in confusing foreign currency!

You’ll need mobile data connection to user Uber, however EU laws mean there’s no roaming charges whilst travelling in Europe, so you don’t have to worry about extortionate data charges!

taxi app for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Easy, safe and cost effective way to hail taxis abroad
  • Know exactly when your rise is arriving and where it will be
  • Available in 84 countries and 737 cities worldwide

 


Games & Puzzles: Apps for Older People 


We all love a challenge, whether it be alone or against someone else. From digital versions of classics like scrabble and Sudoku, to multi-player thrill-filled action games, playing on your smartphone or tablet has never been easier. With thousands of games and apps for older people to choose from, here’s our pick of the bunch…


Words With friends

Available on Android + Apple devices

A modern twist on the classic Scrabble and currently the world’s most popular mobile word game, ‘Words With Friends’ is a fun and free way to test your literacy skills. You can play and chat with friends and family, or find a challenging opponent from the many players in the online community section

word game apps for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Brings out your competitive side!
  • Play against opponents from across the world
  • Free to play

 

Crossword Puzzle Free (Named ‘Crossword Puzzle – Redstone’ on iPhones/iPads)

Available on Android + Apple devices

Crossword puzzle free lets you take your favourite crossword with you wherever you go. With a beautifully designed interface and hints if you get stuck, it will even let you download crosswords to play offline when you don’t have an internet connection (e.g. on a plane).

Be aware, you’ll need to pay if you want to remove the odd advertisement.

 

crossword apps for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Different difficulty levels to suit your ability
  • Play offline mode for when there’s not internet connection
  • Looks great on a smartphone

 

Sudoku Free

This free app means you’ll never be looking for a paper puzzle again. With over 6000 to choose from, it will even automatically save your progress as you play and allow you to create your own puzzles! So if the doorbell goes or you receive a call, you won’t lose your place!

sudoku app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Completely free to download and play
  • Keeps your game progress saved if you leave the app
  • Global leader-boards to rate your skills against friends + more

 

 


Handy & Useful: Apps for Older People 


The abundance of technology and more importantly, all the information that has now created, means tools that were unfathomable are now readily available, and often free! This section is packed with apps for older people that will help solve simple problems or save time on a day to day basis.


Shazam

Available on Android + Apple devices

Nope, despite the name this app has nothing to do with wizardry or sorcerers. Have you ever been listening to a song and wished you could find out what it’s called? Until now, you’re either frantically hushing everyone around you in the hope you’ll hear the radio presenter tell you what it’s called when it’s finished, or forever trying to hum it to someone in a desperate hope they’ll recognise the tune.  Well, no more! 

Shazam is an incredible free app that tells you which song you’re listening to at the touch of a button. It listens to up to 30 seconds of a track before comparing it with the millions in it’s database and identifying what it’s called and who it’s by. It’s mind-blowing how fast you’re presented with an answer and it’s amazingly accurate in it’s detection! You can even sing or hum a track and it can work out what it is (sometimes).

 

shazam app for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Identifies almost any song on earth in seconds, free!
  • Keeps a log of the songs you’s ‘shazam’d’ and allows you to purchase or stream them from the app
  • Hum or sing a song and identify what it is without needing to play it

 

Google Maps

Available on Android + Apple devices

Although Google maps comes pre-installed on any Android smartphone or tablet (e.g. made by Samsung, Doro, HTC) etc, it’s so incredibly useful, we had to mention it in this list. It’s essentially a digital atlas in your pocket or bag, with information on every single location, public transport route, road, railway and more.

 

It allows you to navigate between A and B quickly and efficiently with step-by-step directions and live departures of buses, trains and more, whilst letting you see what’s nearby, opening hours, ratings and everything in-between.

Google Maps has a HUGE amount of incredible functionality, but essentially means you no longer need to buy or own a SatNav or (satellite navigation system). This free app does it all for you! (Make sure you say yes when prompted to turn on your location services, so Google knows where you are)

Examples of searches which could be typed (or spoken) in to Google Maps

  1. “Chinese food near me”
  2. “Navigate to margaret’s house by car (you can save friend’s addresses and Google will remember their name)”
  3. “When’s the next bus to Hyde Park corner”

google maps app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Navigate from anywhere to anywhere via car, public transport, foot and even bicycle
  • Download maps of a city and use them when you have no internet connection, e.g. for a holiday
  • Add via points during a journey e.g. a petrol station or a supermarket
  • See what’s nearby, ideal if you’re in an unfamiliar place

 

WeQ4U

Available on Android + Apple devices

We’ve all heard it before, “your call is important to us”,”you’re moving up the queue” or “we’re experiencing a higher than normal volume of calls”. It’s bad enough being patronised by a pre-recorded voice and waiting for ages, but often we’ll be charged up to 58p per minute to call big companies!

WeQ4U is an ideal app for the elderly, as like the title suggests, it waits in the call centre queue for you and connects you when someone answers. Even better than this, the calls are absolutely FREE! This means when you call big companies like Barclays, British Gas, Sky, Royal Mail and more, there’s no waiting in a queue and no premium rates.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • No longer pay for many premium rate numbers
  • Stands in a queue on your behalf, so no more waiting to be connected
  • Can be used automatically when certain phone numbers are dialled

 

 

Speechnotes – Speech to Text

Only available on Android Devices

Although we now may have larger screens in our pockets, it can be very fiddly typing using a touch screen. As if it wasn’t already difficult enough, the slow down in our manual dexterity as we get older can make this even more difficult. My grandmother’s arthritis in her hands meant she would often struggle typing on her computer and doing other manual tasks.

This is an ideal app for elderly people, as it allows the user to speak in to their smartphone whilst it automatically transfers those words to text. It also uses punctuation correctly, for example capitalising the first letter in a new sentence.

TechSilver Top Tip: Try turning your phone horizontally in to landscape position whilst typing on your smartphone, this should make the letters larger, easier to see and press. You’ll need to have screen rotation enabled for this to work.

dictate app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Send longer messages or create notes without typing it by hand
  • The app has words you can say to start a new paragraph + more
  • Plugs in to other areas of your smartphone, for example writing a text message

 

FixMyStreet

Available on Android + Apple devices

If you live in the UK, FixMyStreet allows you to report problems like potholes, broken drains, graffiti, fly-tipping and much more directly to your local council. With the ability to add evidence as a photo from your phone’s camera or gallery, this is a great way to log a problem that’s either getting on your nerves or could be a danger to other members of the public. So if you’re keen to make where you live the best it can be, this is a great app for older people in your neighbourhood.

There’s also a website version so you don’t have to use the app! Click here to visit it

Please note: We’ve had reports that some councils in the UK have stopped accepting updates from FixMyStreet, although most still do. Either way, the problem will still be reported to the local community, so there’s still a chance to raise awareness! Contact to your council to find out whether they accept them in your area. 

council reporting app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • No more frustrating calls to your local council, report problems in minutes
  • Many UK councils actively use this as their man way to track and deal with issues in your area
  • Lets you report whilst offline (no internet connection), then sends it to the council when you’ve regained a connection

 

BBC Weather

Available on Android + Apple devices

Proudly our favourite topic of conversation here in the UK, the weather seems to change it’s mind more than ever before. With climate change meaning our summer’s are wetter and winter’s less predicable, it’s never been so important to know what’s coming. 

BBC weather allows you to add your favourite locations from Grimsby to Guatemala. Whether you want to know if the sun’s shining where your children are, or maybe you’ve got a holiday home abroad, you can add as many different locations as you wish. 

You can see a forecast hour by hour or day by day for the next 14 days, as well as what the temperature really feels like and the percentage chance of precipitation.

weather app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Free weather from anywhere in the world, in your pocket
  • Up to a 14 day hourly forecast
  • Beautiful design and images which represent the weather

 

 

 


Money & Shopping: Apps for Older People 


Some older people are in a fortunate financial position due to mortgages being paid off and good pensions, whilst many struggle with winter fuel bills and getting by. Whatever your monetaryposition, financial and shopping apps can help us manage our money more effectively and get more for less. 


Banking Apps 

Many seniors we work with wouldn’t dream of doing their banking online, let alone using an app on their smartphone or tablet. This is usually over concerns with security and people accessing their money that shouldn’t do. You may actually be surprised to know that one of the most common ways people get scammed in to handing over the bank details is over the phone.

Using internet and mobile banking means you’ll never need to tell anyone your sensitive information, just tap it in to your banking app.

 

3 Ways Banking Apps Are More Secure Than You Think

  1. Criminals would need more info to access your account than an ATM
    With an ATM, they’d only need to steal your card and look at your pin to access your money. With a banking app, they’d need to know your phone’s security code to unlock it, then they’d need to know your banking app security password (which on some smartphones can be your face or fingerprint). This means even if you lost your phone, your banking app is still secure.
  2. Your device never stores your info
    Instead, it connects to the Bank’s secure network in cyberspace
  3. Your bank account can only be accessed on your device
    Your banking app will be registered to your phone, preventing someone logging in to your account from a different device without verification.

Using banking apps can make your financial life so much easier. Allowing you to do things that you’d previously need to visit your branch to do, from the palm of your hand.

Most major global banks have a banking app, in the UK this includes Natwest, Santander, Halifax, Lloyds, TSB, HSBC, Barclays, Metro Bank and more

 

Common Banking App Features 

  • Checking balances on any account
  • Moving money between your accounts (e.g. current to savings)
  • Sending money to someone (e.g. a family member for their birthday)
    Many banking apps have a limit on the amount you can send to someone unless they’re already set up as a ‘payee’. This is usually done using a ‘card reader’ which is sent in the post by your bank and proves it’s you.
  • Pay bills to established organisations (e.g. companies like ‘British Gas’ will have their bank details already saved within the app)
  • View direct debits and create standing orders
  • Search for transactions (e.g. showing every purchase from Tesco in the last month)
  • Rename your accounts (e.g. ‘Holiday Savings’)
  • Pay someone with just their phone number (if they have a banking app on their phone with ‘PayM’ enabled)
  • View information and apply for banking products (like credit cards)

 

Banking apps offer similar features with some slight differences, so below i’m going to focus on my favourite, NatWest

 

Natwest

Available on Android + Apple devices

Voted ‘Best Banking App’ in the British Bank Awards 2017, NatWest have an excellent app that makes it easy to move your money in a secure and beautifully designed way. Not only does it have the traditional features you’d expect from a banking app, but they’ve conjured some really useful extra ones too…

banking app for elderly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Getcash: Lost your bank card or left it at home? You can still get cash out of any NatWest or RBS ATM by entering a secret code which your banking app will give you.
  • Really easy and secure to pay people / companies in seconds
  • Beautiful design that’s a pleasure to use

 

Consumer Apps 

Vouchercodes

Available on Android + Apple devices

These days saving money does not mean you’re getting an inferior product or service. The internet age has meant companies must compete aggressively for our cash, with vouchers and discounts being one of the best ways to do it.

The UK’s number 1 voucher code company, vouchercodes can use your location to view deals nearby, for example 20% off your food bill at a nearby restaurant (handy if you’re in a new place). Simply show your smartphone or tablet to the cashier when making your purchase and voila!

This is a fantastic app for older people because during retirement, we have much more time to enjoy the finer things in life, like eating out and activities. Why pay more than you need to? With discounts on everything from restaurants to taxi fares and activities to electronics, this means you can have fun without hitting your pocket so hard!

There’s also a website version so you don’t have to use the app! Click here to visit it

discount apps for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Being able to see discounts nearby to your location e.g. restaurants
  • Alerts on new deals in your area (which can be turned off)
  • Can save you £000’s a year if you shop, eat out and travel a lot

 

Topcashback

Available on Android + Apple devices

Cashback has become big business in the last couple of years. With this app you get a % back on your purchase from thousands of retailers and companies, which builds up in your account until you wish to withdraw it.

Now obviously the companies make their money because people buy things just because the discount is there, but if you use the search function to search for items, services or companies that you were going to buy from anyway, it’s literally free money!

For example you’re about to buy something from Marks & Spencer, you’d simple tap them in to the app and if there’s a discount available, click on and shop as normal. The cashback will be added to your account automatically.

If like me, you don’t like shopping on your smartphone (the screen’s too small), you can use their website too which works in exactly the same way. 

Sometimes companies do crazy deals to get you in the door. Recently Superdrug offered 100% cashback up to £15. So I bought £15 worth of grooming products online and collected them free in-store, costing me a grand total of ZERO!

cashback apps for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Very simple to use, no codes or faff, just cashback!
  • Thousands of companies from Boots to Thomson Holidays
  • Withdraw via BACS, PayPal or Amazon voucher in under 24hours

 

Wallet – Money Budgeting App

Available on Android + Apple devices

Sometimes it’s difficult to know what our money’s going on, especially as many companies don’t have their brand name on your bank statement. It’s much easier to budget and cut back on spending in certain areas if you can see what it’s all going on!

This free app links in with your bank account and allows you to keep track of and categorise expenditure, you can even add receipts of manual transactions you’ve spent in cash.

 

budgeting apps for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Links in with your bank account, no need to manually add transactions
  • Displays spending in easy to digest graphics, diagrams & charts
  • Create a plan to save for something, like a grandchild’s birthday or family holiday

 

 


Health & Well-Being: Apps for Older People 


As we age, our health (and making sure we’re looking after it) becomes increasingly important. Unfortunately many unexpected health problems can arise in our more senior years, so making sure we manage them them can give us a happier and healthier lifestyle. Health and well-being technologies have created some fantastic apps for older people, helping to make our health one less thing to worry about!


Medisafe (Named ‘Pill Reminder’ on iPhones / iPads)

Available on Android + Apple devices

Not adhering to medication plans can have catastrophic effects on your health, and can be one of the most common causes of other associated problems like falls and UTI’s. This is not to mention the huge wastage in medications not taken, with an estimated value in the UK of over £300m.

Medisafe is one of the world’s best rated medication reminder apps. It helps track your healthcare plan so you don’t have to, so you take the right medication, at the right time in the right quantities. It’s got most medications already saved, so adding yours should only take a few moments.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Reminders of what, how much and when to take to take medication
  • Track heath measurements like blood glucose or weight
  • Create free reports you can show your doctor

 

Symptomate Symptom Checker

Available on Android + Apple devices

When we’re not feeling well, having some instant advice before a doctors appointment or calling NHS 111 can be invaluable. Created by doctors, this app allows you enter your symptoms before asking you a series of questions e.g. “is the pain on both sides of your head?”. Based on your results and using intelligence from millions of other people, it will give you likely diagnoses with a percentage likelihood of each. 

This app is a good first reference. Only a qualified clinician can diagnose and treat illnesses

 

sympton checking app for old people

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Favourite Features

  • Simple and fast advice when feeling unwell
  • Created by doctors with often accurate diagnoses
  • Free to download and use

 

Still not found what you’re looking for? try this article

How To Stay Safe Online 

How To Stay Safe Online 

From experience working alongside those new to technology, many people are reluctant to embrace gadgets over concerns about online safety. I will guide you through a few simple tips that mitigate risk and let you persevere with your tech-adventures, worry-free.

 

Shopping Online – How To Stay Safe Online 

Online shopping is booming, though unfortunately some sceptics are not yet enjoying its benefits. Paying online uses ‘encryption’; think a digital jigsaw that thieves would be unable to piece back together. You can check your connection is securely encrypted by looking for a green padlock to the left of the address (URL) bar.  

If you are unsure of a company’s legitimacy, try searching for their reviews and see what other people have said, e.g. search ‘TechSilver Reviews’. Free payment methods like ‘PayPal’ not only offer convenience by securely saving your card details and speeding up ordering, but offer protection if your goods don’t show up or are not as described. 

Want some advice on selling your things online? Read our guide

Avoiding Viruses – How To Stay Safe Online 

Many companies play on our paranoia, driving us to pay monthly fees for anti-virus programs that slow our computers and aren’t always necessary. Free solutions like Avast (.com) offer protection against viruses, whilst ‘Malwarebytes’ is useful if your computer is already infected. If it’s completely clogged and unusable, try ‘FixMeStick’. For a one-off fee, you just plug in and leave it to remove all known threats, hassle-free.

 

Downloading Apps – How To Stay Safe Online 

Apps offer solutions from navigation to translation, but can be a security risk. If in the official app market (e.g. ‘Play Store’ or ‘App Store’), it’s a good sign of legitimacy, as they are regularly vetted. When installing, it will display the permissions the app is asking for e.g, access to your camera. Although this may seem risky, apps require these in order to function. E.g. if you are installing a ‘Boot Sale’ app that lets you sell things online, it requires access to your camera so you can take pictures of the things you’re selling.

 

Email Scams – How To Stay Safe Online 

Phishing (without a rod) is a common method for online criminals, sending emails posing as companies like your bank, requesting information. The first way to spot them is legitimate emails will always use your real name. The ‘from’ address should not have numbers to replace letters (e.g. ‘@natwe5t.com’) and should replicate their official website address. Scammers often get you to act quickly in order to circumnavigate natural suspicions, take a moment to ponder legitimacy and if in doubt, call the company they’re claiming to be.  

Don’t let security concerns get in the way of enjoying technology. Use your common sense and follow the advice above; the chances are you’ll be worry free. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is… So unless you recently entered the Zambian lottery, the chances are you haven’t won!  


Easy to use Technology

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Checking Your Sleeping Habits Online

sleeping advice

Did you know that sleeping habits can vary? That’s right, with over 7 billion people around the world, not everyone sleeps the same. There are several factors that can affect how a person sleeps, from where they live, to their busy schedules and even specific health conditions they may have. Everyone knows falling asleep is no easy feat, so it’s understandable if some people find it more difficult than others.

So how do you go about discovering what type of sleeping habit you have? And how can you possibly remedy it in line with your lifestyle? If you don’t have the time and means to consult a medical expert… there’s always the internet.

In recent years, the medical industry has discovered the value of the internet as a new means to treat their patients. Doctors and nurses have shared all that they know about sleeping with various medical websites and health forums. A treasure trove of information is now at our fingertips. A few clicks and you can have all your questions on sleep answered. Below is just some of the information and answers from the most reliable sleep and health websites you will discover when you check your sleep habits online.


Sleeping Habits In Different Parts of The World

Different cultures across the globe require different sleeping habits. Time Zones and climates play a huge part in how people sleep. Mutesnoring shares on their website different surveys and studies that support the idea of diverse sleeping habits around the world.

According to their post, Australians wake up the earliest, with 12% already up before 5:00am. In contrast, the Japanese sleep much later, with 25% getting up at 1:00pm on weekends. A difference between Americans and British people can also be found in their reactions towards snoring. The studies showed that 22% of British people are annoyed by their partner’s snoring while 37% of Americans view it as comic relief.


Sleeping Patterns

Unbeknown to many, there are three distinct types of sleeping patterns. Sleep Habits shares that there are three common sleeping patterns: Monophasic, Biphasic, and Polyphasic. These patterns are based on two vital factors, how long a person is awake and the regular timing of your sleeping.

Monophasic sleeping is what most people consider the most normal of the three sleeping patterns. This pattern consists of having one 8-hour sleep per day. On the other hand, Biphasic sleeping consists of sleeping two times a day, one long rest at night and a quick nap in the middle of the day. This pattern is most common in Spain, Latin America, and other Spanish-colonised countries with their concept of “siesta,” a nap after lunch.

Finally, the most complex of the three sleeping patterns is Polyphasic sleeping. A person who has this pattern sleeps about 4-6 times a day. The pattern is classified into three degrees: Everyman, Uberman, and Dymaxion. Everyman consists of a core sleep that is longer than other naps, while Uberman makes use of 6 naps a day taking 30 minutes or less for each. Comparatively, Dymaxion consists of taking a 30-minute nap every 6 hours per day.


Tips to Fall Asleep Better

Leesa lists down 25 tips you can follow to fall asleep faster and avoid insomnia. A number of important tidbits make up the list, from changing your diet, fixing your schedules, and even how you decorate your bedroom to fit your own sleeping habits. Some of their tips even require physical and mental exercises to relax your brain, making it easier for you to fall asleep.


Sleep Hygiene

Sleep Education defines Sleep Hygiene as a series of healthy sleep habits that can improve your ability to fall asleep. They state that Sleep Hygiene is a vital part of Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy (CBT), one of the most effective treatments in curing insomnia. Proper Sleep Hygiene counters the various thoughts and behaviours you have that prevent your from falling asleep faster.

Sleep Education also lists down a few tips to perfect your Sleep Hygiene. A lot of their tips consist of activities that can be achieved in the bedroom, such as keeping a consistent sleeping schedule and limiting activities in bed to just sleeping. Diet changes are also heavily advised like avoiding coffee and alcohol and consuming more water and milk.

What Illness do I have? – Guide to Online Symptom Checkers

what illness do I have

What Illness do I have? – Introduction

The huge amount of knowledge which is freely shared online now means that booking an appointment with your GP is no longer the only option should you have any health concerns. If you’re looking to find out ‘what illness do I have?’, from symptom-checking smartphone apps to online conversations with real doctors, the world of tech provides great advice when it comes to your well being.

Free Symptom Checkers 

As Brits I’m sure we’re all very grateful to have the NHS, but they don’t just offer physical interactions. Similar to the 111 advice line, the ‘Heath A-Z’ section on the ‘NHS Choices’ website has advice on common issues like Sciatica or Menopause to rare genetic conditions, as well as an interactive human body where you can select the problematic area for guidance.

‘WebMD’ symptom checker in partnership with Boots not only offers advice on symptoms, but has a section with questions to ask your doctor on certain conditions. This can be helpful after a diagnosis to better understand the condition and its effects.

Online Doctors

Don’t fancy the wait for an appointment or struggle leaving the house? Looking to find out ‘what illness do I have?’ There’s been a huge increase in on-demand online doctor services. Simply log on, book your slot and pay a small fee to speak face-to-face (through your computer, tablet or smartphone) to a real UK-based GP. Push Doctor can get you seen in as little as 6 minutes, issue prescriptions and give sick notes via email. A 10 minute session will cost you £20.

what illness do I have

 

Free Online Doctors

If you’d rather not fork out for advice, First Opinion offer you a direct dialogue with a doctor via text messaging, helping you find out ‘what illness do I have?’ Giving a guaranteed response from a clinician within 9 minutes 24 hours a day, and up to 100 texts per month costing nothing. You can upgrade for $9 per month (it’s a US company) for faster response times and unlimited messages.

Health Forums

Online forums are great for advice from others that are or have been in your position. Having a heath condition can sometimes be a lonely or scary place to be, but gaining the comfort of others who’ve been there can make all the difference, even if it’s a loved one that’s unwell. Try searching online for a related forum e.g. ‘breast cancer forum’ like the ‘Breast Cancer Care’ Forum.

Symptom Checking Apps

Symptomate Symptom-checking app will ask a series of questions like ‘is the pain on both sides of your head?’ To create a free report which you may wish to take to a healthcare professional.

Our increasingly online world has made expert medical advice much more accessible and available, especially by bringing it to wherever you may beat the time. If you’re in a remote area or abroad, this can be life-changing to get the advice you need. However, always bear in mind that if something seems serious, you should always seek further medical attention, no matter what the circumstances are.


Click to read our guide on staying fit and healthy online

Using Technology / The Internet for Health, Dieting & Fitness

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How Technology can help Health & Wellbeing

Whether you’re feeling a little a little guilty due to over indulgence recently, looking to make your lifestyle healthier or living with a health condition, wellbeing is no doubt at the top of many agendas. Luckily there’s plenty of useful tools out there in the world of technology to help you stay at your best, from exercise guidance to managing medication, and workout videos to nutrition advice.  

Exercise, Fitness and Healthy Lifestyle Videos

With the internet now accessible on a large range of devices (e.g. Smartphones and tablet computers), and readily available in most homes, it’s easier than ever to have the latest health and fitness information at your fingertips. Resources I’ve found very useful whilst looking for exercise advice with my mother, (who finds exertion difficult due to restricted movement), are fitness videos.  

Video sharing websites like YouTube (www.youtube.com) have over a billion videos to entertain, educate and inform you. Simply use the search bar at the top of the website or free dedicated app to type whatever you’re looking for. I discovered a great range of fitness videos where you can burn fat and build muscle, with easy to follow step by step exercises, all from your armchair! Benefits of these free exercise clips include being able to follow them at your own convenience, whether it’s in the privacy of your own home, a hotel room or on holiday. Regardless of your confidence, fitness level or knowledge about wellbeing, there will be a video to help offer advice. Simply try searching (e.g. ‘healthy breakfast recipes’ or ‘jogging for beginners’), browse the results and see for yourself. 

One of the greatest things about the internet is the huge amount of valuable information and interaction available. For example, on this particular chair exercise clip, there were links to accessing everything from a 30-day fitness program to a fat reducing meal plan, all completely free. In addition to this, whilst browsing videos online there is the option to interact and gain knowledge from experts and other viewers through the comments section, (e.g. the comments from viewers on this particular video all had responses from the video creators, offering advice and tips). Just leave a comment post below the video to share your question or opinion, or why not offer advice to someone else by commenting on their post? 

get fit using the internet

Smartphone & Tablet Apps

If you’ve got a smartphone or tablet there is a large range of applications or ‘apps’ to help keep you fit and healthy, below I’ve selected a few you may find useful…

Medisafe: Anyone taking medication for health conditions knows the inconvenience it can cause as well as the risks of forgetting to take the correct amount at the right times, luckily there’s a simple way to help avoid any unnecessary stresses. This free app allows you add as many medications as you wish, giving reminders when to take them that include the dosage and even the colour and appearance of the pill.

Symptomate Symptom Checker: We’re all aware on the increasing pressures on our national health service, with it being increasingly difficult to get a GP appointment that suits you, get some initial advice, designed by doctors, from the comfort of your home. The application will ask a series of questions like ‘is the pain on both sides of your head?’ To create a free report which you may wish to take to a healthcare professional. Always remember to consult a healthcare professional if you’re concerned.

 


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

Click here to browse our best-selling easy to use Tablet Computer


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