More than 80% say they value current technology and use it daily
By Jennifer Hughes
The majority of Canadians 50 or older believe that technology has a positive impact on society and use it every day, according to a recent Environics Research survey.
Commissioned by the federally funded network AGE-WELL, the survey polled more than 2,000 Canadians aged 50 or older and found that over half (58%) of those 65 or older and more than three-quarters (78%) of those aged 50 to 64 own smartphones—more than 90% of smartphone owners said they find them easy to use. Most of those aged 50 to 64 (80%) and 65+ (74%) said they feel confident when it comes to using present-day technology.
The majority of those 65 or older (80%) believe that technology can help older Canadians remain independent and safe, and allow them to stay in their homes longer. Many (7 in 10) also believe that technology can aid seniors by allowing them to manage their health and keeping them active and in touch with family and friends, thereby reducing social isolation.
Most older Canadians are online every day: 94% of those 50–64 and 86% of the 65-plus crowd. While 88% of those 50-64 have at least one social media account (with Facebook being the most popular, at 72%), those 65-plus are also active on social media, as 63% report having Facebook accounts.
“With this level of receptivity and usage, we have an incredible opportunity to create products that will help people age well and remain in their own homes longer,” the managing director and COO of AGE-WELL, Bridgette Murphy, said in the report. Murphy believes that Canada is “well positioned to be a world leader in the field of technology and aging.”