Technology innovation for independent-living older adults and their family caregivers has come a long way!
Like the rest of tech, it also has a long way to go before the full potential is realized (if there is ANY limit to the possibilities).
Senior Care Corner® has been covering CES®, the largest and most influential technology event, since our first visit in 2011. At that time, there were a relative few companies, mostly small startups, working on devices for older adults as a founding mission.
We had to use our imaginations to envision the potential benefits for older adults and their family caregivers from innovations designed and marketed for younger people.
Since then, the talk at CES has gone from trying to convince most tech companies seniors will actually use technology to companies big and small touting the benefits of their offerings to seniors.
Of course, in the interim it was ‘discovered’ that the senior market is huge and growing fast. That and older adults demonstrated, with the adoption of smartphones by many, they are willing to consider beneficial innovations.
CES Conference Sessions of Interest
Each year since 2011 there have been more and more conference sessions with information of interest to older adults and their family caregivers. Even though the conference schedule is still a work in progress, we are finding many with great information.
These are just a sampling of the most promising sessions from the schedule so far.
- Service Robots in Daily Life — The discussion of robotics has gone from industrial robots to those that will interact with us in our daily lives. Sessions will discuss robots that will do household chores, others that will cook for us, and robotic caregivers.
- Connections Summit — This summit looks at strategies to meet the challenges of the Internet of Things (IoT) and smart homes. It will have sessions that discuss voice control of home technologies, in-home tech support, and independent living. We are particularly looking forward to that last session, which will look at smart home solutions that deliver life- and cost-saving health solutions at home.
- Digital Health Summit — The importance of healthcare to older adults – all of us, really – means the Digital Health Summit is always one of the most important places to be at CES. Highlights this year include eradicating chronic illness, Alzheimer’s Disease, and the technologies that will power the future of healthcare.
Add to these conference tracks on wearable technology, the future of transportation, artificial intelligence, and more, our biggest technology need during CES would be one with which we could clone ourselves to cover everything that is important to you.
CES 2019 Exhibitors
As valuable as we find the conference sessions at CES, the heart and soul of the event is the exhibit floor. Floors, actually, as once again CES exhibits will cover floors in several venues, with enough walking required to get in weeks worth of steps for those who are counting.
In addition to technologies that were only being imagined when we started covering CES, there are also several exhibitor categories that weren’t on the map then.
These are some of the categories that will have tech of greatest interest to seniors and family caregivers, along with the number of exhibitors signed up for each one (many appear in the numbers for multiple categories).
- Accessibility (69)
- Digital Health (279)
- Robotics (189)
- Smart Home (655)
- Cyber Security and Privacy (69)
- Wearables (380)
This sampling should give you a hint that we have a lot of walking ahead of us, once again, during CES. All well worth it, of course, as we always seem to find a few exhibits that are pleasant surprises and look forward to reporting back to you on what we find.
Much More to Come
This is but the first of many articles we will write as part of our coverage of CES 2019. As the event nears, we will provide updates on the program and our plans.
One of the most important aspects of CES each year is the people we meet there, some of whom provide great background information for our articles and others who we interview for our podcasts.
Given how busy everyone is at CES, especially conference speakers, some of our best CES interviews don’t take place there but afterward, when everyone is back home.
Please let us know if there is anything or any company specifically you would like to see us cover and we will work to get it on our schedule.
Stay tuned for more of our coverage of CES 2019.