Longevity-Promoting Gadgets Are Here
The “longevity economy” (i.e., aging baby boomers seeking long lives) meets “the quantified self” (tracking everything we do online) in the above video about technologies that help aging boomers stay fit.
The PBS video shows off some of the products being developed to cater to an enormous market of some 100 million Americans over age 50, who are spending about $7 trillion per year. Products include a treadmill desk, technology that reveals sleep patterns, and fitness watches measuring everything from blood pressure to how many steps are walked daily.
One issue not mentioned is the privacy around health matters that boomers sacrifice when their every move and personal health metric is a digital data point stored in the cloud. Younger Americans are comfortable about disclosing their private lives online, but are boomers willing to go this far in the name of health and longevity?
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It's amazing that this demographic is spending $7 trillion a year. Is it on apps or just spending in general? Also, my parents (both over 50) can barely figure out how to turn on their iPad let alone buy apps on it.
There is a small minority of us in every age group who exercise regularly for the sheer joy of doing it and of feeling fit. For the rest, whatever will motivate them to do what they need to do to eat right and get fit, whether it be new technology, an app, the opportunity for social contact or financial gain, is of benefit to society as a whole. The key is to find the reinforcers for those behaviors and make them all available. It's not going to be technology for every baby boomer, that is for sure!
Annabelle - you're absolutely right the blog wasn't clear. That $7 trillion figure is total consumer spending - not just spending on gadgets. Thanks for reading (closely)! Kim (blog writer)
One issue not mentioned is the privacy around health matters that boomers sacrifice when their every move and personal health metric is a digital data point stored in the cloud.We should be careful with any product if they are going to store our data online. We should see beyond what happened with iCloud server.