February 22, 2020

A new generation of simple apps can make life easier at any age

When it comes to technology, some people who did not grow up with an iPhone next to their cribs may be intimidated by the constant advancements of iOS updates and confusing applications, commonly known as apps. But the ever-growing world of technology does not need to be a daunting challenge for the baby boomer generation and older folks.

Rather, plenty of easy and accessible apps can assist baby boomers (generally ages 53 to 71) and even their parents in their daily lives, whether planning a vacation, communicating with friends, staying healthy or finding romance. Apps like these take steps to ensure that every age group can take advantage of new generations of tech advancement.

Airbnb: For retirees with more time to travel or working boomers eager to make the most of limited vacation time, Airbnb is a possible alternative to booking reservations at hotels. Essentially, Airbnbs are houses, apartments and rooms that residents around the world rent out to tourists. This app provides an opportunity for travelers to live like locals, and all the planning can be done via iPhones, Apple Watches or Android devices. The app is free for downloading, and accommodations’ prices are listed based on a user’s living preferences.

Voice Reading: Have a hard time reading the font size on your mobile device? This app reads texts, internet sites, emails and files aloud to its user. The app can be programmed for various accents and languages to aid people to better understand what is being read. This also can be a helpful tool when people are driving and do not want to be distracted by looking at their messages. Voice Reading is available for free on Android devices.

i FORGOT MY GLASSES: This app enables users to zoom in, adjust contrast and change text to black or white to increase readability of colored text — especially handy when you’ve forgotten your reading glasses and want to check out a menu, program or book. It can be downloaded for free on Android devices and for 99 cents on iPhones.

Park and Forget: For those who commonly forget where they parked their car, this helpful app notes the color section of their space, the level of the parking structure and other details. It is available for iPhones for 99 cents.

Waze: This Israeli-invented app efficiently navigates by taking the fastest route to a destination. Waze drivers are working live to provide data and receive a real-time estimate of how long a trip will take. The app is free for people with iPhones and Android devices.

Lumosity: Meant to help keep people mentally active and improve memory, Lumosity enables users to interact with puzzles and brain games. This app was created by neuroscientists and is free on the app store. Once it is downloaded, users can create a free membership account for limited access to the games or purchase subscriptions of various lengths for full access to the app.

Human-Activity Tracker: With people now tracking their steps on their mobile devices, an app like Human-Activity Tracker helps users understand their daily action and improve their activity level. Instead of focusing on how many steps a person takes in a day, this app tracks how many minutes a person is active, as it automatically notes walks, runs and bike rides. It is available for free for the iPhone and Apple Watch.

Pillboxie: Instead of worrying about remembering to take medication at prescribed times, Pillboxie reminds its users. This app also enables people to customize the alerts for the color of the pill needed to be taken. The app is 99 cents for iPhones and iPads.

Uber: While the users of this app may be stereotyped as millennials who want to jump from party to party safely, it also can be used for boomers and older people who no longer can drive or don’t want to drive themselves to work, doctor appointments or social engagements. Downloading Uber on iPhones and Androids is free, but accounts must be created to pay for rides.

JSwipe: Similar to the popular dating site JDate, this app filters matches by age, location, denomination and whether users keep kosher. When a match is made, the screen reads “Mazel Tov!” with the image of a chair being lifted in the air. The app is an easy way to connect Jewish men and women of any age.

Amazon: For anyone who wants to avoid shopping errands, Amazon is a great tool. This app enables you to purchase grocery and pantry items, books, clothes, everyday household appliances and more. The Amazon app is free to download but users must create an account to begin making purchases. You can become an Amazon Prime member for $10.99 per month to get your orders delivered in two days with free shipping.