When it comes to leveraging our seniors’ daily lives with smart appliances, smartphones or computers may no longer make sense since most seniors have problems getting the most out of these button-packed gadgets.
In recent years, smart speakers like Alexa or Google Home have become a superior choice over other digital devices due to their user-friendly features, making the daily activities of your parents more approachable with just one or two simple voice commands.
Keep reading to discover the eight reasons Google Home can help your parents live their lives more easily.
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8 Reasons Why Google Home Is Perfect for Seniors
What are smart speakers?
Smart speakers (Google Home, Amazon Alexa) are handy wireless devices that can be controlled from afar with your voice or through a smartphone app.
To start, you need to use a specific phrase to activate the device, followed by your specific requests. For example, Alexa from Amazon waits for the word “Alexa.” This feature can be individually set up for each user’s needs.
These voice-recognition devices have built-in features that complete everyday tasks commanded by users. It can control pretty much everything within your household—from answering the most random questions that come across your mind, turning on or off smart light bulbs to adjusting the thermostats, playing your favorite songs, and declining phone calls. They may also learn and analyze your commands for future preferences based on prior interaction.
So how can Google Home or other automation home assistant devices help our seniors’ daily lives?
Most of the time, seniors struggle to keep up with the ever-evolving technology. Simple tasks like typing a few words on the tiny screen of smartphones are becoming more difficult due to mobility and vision declines. As a result, using their own voices seems to be a better option, giving seniors a hands-free way to execute and accomplish any tasks they can no longer do themselves.
Here is the list of the eight reasons why Google Home or smart speakers are the ultimate solutions for supporting and improving our seniors’ lives.
Set Timers & Reminders
Every smart speaker can help you set up timers and reminders for various purposes and events. Swamped in the kitchen and can’t seem to keep up with the baking? Alexa can tell when it’s time to take the pie out of the oven.
For seniors with hazy memories, reminders are a huge help. It can remind your parents when to take medicine, when to get ready for appointments, when to turn on the TV for their favorite shows, when to pick up mail, etc.
Moreover, staying on top of medication is crucial for seniors, with 87% of them aged between 62 and 85 taking at least one prescription. Taking medicines at the right time can be quite a struggle for seniors. Just like full-time caregivers, in-home virtual assistants enable your parents to remind themselves with simple voice inputs like “Alexa, remind me to take medicine at 5:30 PM” and so on, depending on their needs.
Online & Grocery Shopping
Grocery shopping can be a bit of a pain for anyone. Imagine the hassle it must be for our seniors to deal with long lines of people, crowded parking lots, and unexpected out-of-stock items. Innovative tools like Google Home or Amazon Echo can make their shopping experience less hectic within a few steps.
Forget notepads and pens. Instead, help your parents set up straightforward voice commands to ask Google Home or Alexa to create a grocery list. All they need to do is open the app, tap on the micro symbol, and then speak to add or remove items from the cart. Once they have finished shopping and gone through the list, your parents can order the selected items and have them shipped right to their doorstep after one tap, depending on each platform.
Keep Up With Important Medical Appointments
Aside from medications, medical appointments are something hard to keep a tab on for your parents and older family members, especially if they live independently or without the help of caregivers.
Are you looking for ways to help organize medical appointments for your parents? Every ‘smart’ home assistant carries a built-in calendar that allows users to schedule future appointments. For example, when the due date is approaching, Alexa or Google Home will automatically remind you one or even days in advance.
These days, scheduling doctor appointments is made easy and simple by integrating healthcare systems and smart home assistants. Your parents can directly book a health screening alongside a setup reminder with just their voice. This reminder is a valuable feature that all seniors should get a hold of to support their well-being.
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Make Emergency Calls
Our seniors often run into trouble operating smartphones due to the small screen and complicated features. With automatic dialing from smart speakers, your parents no longer need to search through a long list of phone numbers to find the one they want to call. In worst-case scenarios, they can still get medical help immediately, even if they are far from their phone or unable to move due to falls.
Offer Various Entertainment Pursuits
As your parents’ age, their fun and recreational activities list becomes shorter. For example, their declining vision or cognitive issues can make reading books or watching TV become out of reach for them. But did you know that Google Home and Alexa offer a much better solution when pursuing entertainment endeavors? Instead of constantly turning pages to follow the story flow of their go-to novels, your parents can now listen to audiobooks — where they can adjust volume and request playback for parts they have missed.
Do your parents seem to grow tired of switching between several channels? Get them a smart TV and help them connect with Alexa or Google Home. Once synced, smart speakers can keep your parents updated on the hottest worldwide news thanks to downloads of top news channels like BBC News, CNN, and Fox News. Functionally, they read out loud the most recent headlines and summaries and a quick run-down of the weather forecast.
Last but not least, Alexa and Google Home also do an excellent job telling jokes or riddles and playing your parents’ favorite songs — all is done with just voice control.
Execute Tasks for Seniors with Visual Impairment
As mentioned earlier, voice-recognition smart home assistant devices are a great alternative to smartphones, especially if your parents have issues with their vision. When they need to find something, voice control can be a lifesaver by stripping away unnecessary steps. Instead, they will listen and tackle the tasks accordingly.
The scenarios where your parents stumble across buttons and long lists of CDs and movies are probably long gone. Currently, streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify enable your parents to feel nostalgic with lists of blasts from the past and movies that bring the best memories of their youth.
All-At-Once Control of Smart Home Devices
Another way Google Home or smart speakers can help your parents is by allowing them to control all in-home smart appliances within their household, such as doorbells, smart door locks, light bulbs, curtains, thermostats, robot vacuum cleaners, and so on.
Your parents now can enjoy the pleasure of commanding everything to be done through their voice input without the need to get up and move around their house. Before making their dreams come true, help them complete the initial setup to ensure everything runs smoothly while you are away.
Offer A Form of Companionship
Spending days and nights alone is a sad reality for most seniors. Fortunately, having a smart speaker inside their household is an excellent way to keep them entertained, reducing stress, anxiety, and feelings of loneliness. In a way, day-to-day contact between your parents and a smart speaker can help create a form of companionship and communication — where they can engage in small chats or sing songs together.
If you have questions about Google Home for seniors, connect with us and learn more.
At 12 Oaks, our team of caring professionals is dedicated to keeping residents safe, engaged, and connected to their families and friends while leading fulfilling lives. 12 Oaks senior living communities are an ideal place to enjoy the encore season of life.
For questions or to book a scheduled personalized tour, don’t hesitate to contact us.
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Are you searching for senior living help? At 12 Oaks Senior Living, we would love to learn more about your unique needs and the opportunity we may have to help you meet them. Our blog is one of the valuable resources we provide to inform and encourage seniors to lead fulfilling and thriving lives. Contact us today to schedule a virtual tour.