People need help with their smartphones

Eighteen people turned up recently at Napier Library for a Stepping UP class on smartphones.  This is a growing trend, as parents and grandparents in particular are often the beneficiaries of ‘hand-me-down’ devices from their more tech-savvy children and grandchildren.

The Digital Seniors initiative in the Wairarapa has also discovered a strong demand from seniors for help with ‘hand-me-down’ devices.  Lynn Bushell, who manages the Digital Seniors programme says that she has notices a surge in demand whenever a new digital device is released.  This triggers a device upgrade by the “under 40’s”,with a trickle down of older devices to parents and grandparents.  The problem, she says, is that the devices come loaded with apps that can be quite confusing to older people, and of course no support from the donor!  “The first thing we do is clear all the apps off the front screen, except for phone, text and email, and only when users are comfortable using these do we start introducing other helpful apps,” said Lynn.