Smartphone applications have become increasingly prominent aspects of most people's daily lives, and their usage is often associated with younger people. According to the Pew Research Center, over one fourth of people over age 50 own smartphones, which means they are likely to also use smartphone applications. There are so many applications for seniors to choose from.
National Public Radio's free NPR News application is sure to be a hit with seniors. This media software offers users access to hourly updates as well as the ability to hear stories in any order. You can also download stories for offline reading.
Just because you retire, that doesn't mean you can't benefit from the connectivity offered by social media applications such as Facebook. With this free smartphone application, seniors are able to remain connected with their children, grandchildren and friends.
Find My Phone
Install the Find My iPhone application onto your iPhone, and you do not need to worry about misplacing your iPhone again. This application helps you locate your lost phone by displaying its location on another device (on a map), by playing a sound, displaying a message or remotely locking the device.
Many people, young and old, are keen to save money wherever possible. GasBuddy helps its users find the cheapest gas in the immediate area. Users can also search by zip code to find cheap gas nearby.
This app features easy-to-read descriptions of medical uses and known side effects of many medications. The application is a must for many senior citizens. MedWatcher also offers news and safety alerts for medical devices, vaccines and prescription medication.
Magnifying Glass with Light
As we age, small print and dim lighting may present their challenges. However, this application magnifies and brightens text on anything from menu boards to instructions on medicine bottles. It can be very useful to seniors losing their eyesight.
Are you wondering what that bump on your hand is? Are you confused about hot flashes? You can check out the WebMD application, which features a step-by-step symptom checker as well as a database of drugs, supplements and vitamins, and other helpful tidbits. Users of this application are also able to find nearby medical professionals and treat their own injuries with basic first aid.
Words with Friends
For those who enjoy playing board games, try downloading this free word game that is highly reminiscent of Scrabble. The iPhone version of Words with Friends can be played with random opponents. Letter boards in the game can also be posted to social media sites such as Facebook.
The Weather Channel
For many senior citizens, monitoring the weather is an engrossing hobby. Will it rain tomorrow? What's the forecast for the next four days? Is it raining in another city? Is there a severe weather warning in effect? You can find the answer to these weather-related questions and more on The Weather Channel's free iPhone application. It's useful if you want to know the forecast quickly.
CNN's free iPhone application is a staple for news buffs. News stories are updated throughout the day, certain shows are available live and users are able to participate in online discussions using this application.
The Bottom Line
Personal mobile devices with smartphone capabilities are certainly not just for young people. With so many applications offering everything from entertainment to healthcare organizers, older users of smartphones stand to benefit from smartphone applications just as much as young people do.