Skip navigation

Best strategies for setting up iPad for elderly person?

3454 Views 17 Replies Latest reply: Jul 27, 2013 8:42 PM by appleuser1322 RSS
1 2 Previous Next
lee p. Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Mar 5, 2012 12:22 PM

I hope to eventually get an iPad 3 for an elderly parent and I'm trying to figure out the best way to go about it. 

 

Here is what I was thinking:

 

- get iPad.

- set up iPad using iTunes account that I create from a spare email address I have access to.  

- get some iTunes cards via my own account and load it into the new account.

- install apps, fiddle with settings, set up iCloud, possibly load it with photos, etc.

- send iPad to them.

- change email address on the new account to reflect their actual email address.

 

- Is it correct in that no credit card would need to be entered by them at any point? 

- I have tweaked iChat on their laptop to auto-answer incoming video chats.  It sounds like there is no such setting on Facetime, right?   Is it still pretty easy to accept Facetime calls on the iPad (I've only used it via OS X).   From reading some past threads it sounds like there is no way to make a shortcut so that a specific contact could be called in one click (i.e. icon on dock), is that still the case?  (a Siri on iPad would help with this)

- I currently do not do much photo sharing via Apple devices.  What is the easiest/best way to have them be able to view a gallary of images that one or more people can add things to remotely?  Do I have to turn to third-party apps to do this?

- Any other general recommendations on getting a iPad set up for someone (especially the elderly) who are physically far away (and thus who won't get hands-on training from the person setting it up, but from people who are iPad savvy)?

 

I envision them mainly using it for: video chat, solitaire, email reading (not heavy email composing), light web, photo taking/sharing, etc.

 

Thanks,

Mac OS X (10.6.7)
  • BobTheFisherman Level 6 Level 6 (10,570 points)

    lee p. wrote:

     

    I hope to eventually get an iPad 3 for an elderly parent and I'm trying to figure out the best way to go about it. 

     

    Here is what I was thinking:

     

    - get iPad.

    - set up iPad using iTunes account that I create from a spare email address I have access to.  

    - get some iTunes cards via my own account and load it into the new account.

    - install apps, fiddle with settings, set up iCloud, possibly load it with photos, etc.

    - send iPad to them.

    - change email address on the new account to reflect their actual email address.

     

    - Is it correct in that no credit card would need to be entered by them at any point? 

    - I have tweaked iChat on their laptop to auto-answer incoming video chats.  It sounds like there is no such setting on Facetime, right?   Is it still pretty easy to accept Facetime calls on the iPad (I've only used it via OS X).   From reading some past threads it sounds like there is no way to make a shortcut so that a specific contact could be called in one click (i.e. icon on dock), is that still the case?  (a Siri on iPad would help with this)

    - I currently do not do much photo sharing via Apple devices.  What is the easiest/best way to have them be able to view a gallary of images that one or more people can add things to remotely?  Do I have to turn to third-party apps to do this?

    - Any other general recommendations on getting a iPad set up for someone (especially the elderly) who are physically far away (and thus who won't get hands-on training from the person setting it up, but from people who are iPad savvy)?

     

    I envision them mainly using it for: video chat, solitaire, email reading (not heavy email composing), light web, photo taking/sharing, etc.

     

    Thanks,

    Instead of "I'm trying to figure out the best way to go about it." and "Here is what I was thinking:..." and "I envision them mainly using it for: video chat, solitaire, email reading (not heavy email composing), light web, photo taking/sharing, etc." make it about them. You seem to be thinking more about what you think rather than what they want. There is a lot of "I" in your post.

     

    Ask them what they would/could use a computer for. Show them an iPad and a laptop and have them try each. Explain the differences to them.

     

    If an elderly parent can use an iPad they could use a laptop. And they may suprise you, once asked, what they would like to use the device for.

  • captino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I have begun watching this topic as part of a broader topic, but very close to this, which is -- how can I configure an iPad (or other tablet) to make it more accessible to a senior with waning powers of coordination and comphrehension?  My interest begin on the music end of things -- we have been showing my mother-in-law my iPhone, and we tune it to YouTube and ask her to name a favorite performer, and so far everyone she has named has a presence on YouTube, and then we instantly show her the video associated with the song and presto -- there is her favorite artist singing one of her favorite songs that she has not heard in many years!  She is rapt and every week when we show up she asks us to haul out the phone and show her some more.  The people who run the place at which she stays (and at this one all are somewhat memory impaired, some with mild dementia, some with more advanced Alzheimer's) remarked to me that MUSIC seems to be a universal language to their patients, and everyone has a favorite artist from their own time, and they love listening to them *and* at the same time seeing pictures of that artist when times were different. 

     

    The interest here I see is to enable users to communicate with friends and relatives, and I see that "communications" would be a second function that must be developed as part of a software package that would be written for seniors, including those who are impaired by more than simple old age.  In the area of the place I hang out, most people have lost the ability to communicate (I think).  My own Mother-in-law, who alway had good verbal acuity, seems to lose interest in verbal expression on her "bad days," but she seems always ready to see older musicians, or older film clips about "other times."  Obviously, the interests would vary infinitely with the person and some my prefer old murder mysteries to music, but an iPad has the ability to bring all that to people, provided it is adjusted to make its operation far simpler than presently.  I wish I had a prototype iPad that was directed towards music and musicians just to see how long it would hold her attention to be able to call up old tunes and performers.  One difference from the existing approach -- it would be necessary to pre-form the lists of entertainers, perhaps by music style or year (or both), so they could be reminded of people whose written names would spart memories. 

     

    I have only begun my research into this, but my impression so far is that this area is only getting a tiny fraction of the attention it deserves -- given modern medicine, this is where EVERYONE is headed, and a propely modified iPad could be a godsend for seniors anxious to tap into the world out there -- the world that interests them the most. 

     

    All ideas are welcome, including reasons why this is not a good idea or why it would not work!

     

    Thanks

     

    Jim Morrin

    Chicago

  • jeffreyimm Calculating status...

    Captino -

    I have had to find other answers for this.  I will tell you what does WORK.

    I have used web tools, where I have control of both sides, and the senior is a "viewer" on the computer of the information.  This makes it less frightening for the senior because they don't have to "learn" somethIt ing new, especially when memory challenges exist.

     

    So I have used a web-based remote control tool.

    I believe it is available for both Mac and PCs called "GoToMyPC.com"

    The remote control tool allows me to log on, and assist the senior with viewing the computer information remotely.  I have also used "DropBox" to assist me in remote document sharing for the senior's computer.

    It has limitations, but it makes a HUGE difference in senior computing assistance, especially as there are still a lot of seniors who have never used personal computers.

     

    I will be glad to share other lessons I have learned.

    I am sorry to say I was not able to get an iPAD solution up and running with this as I had originally hoped.   Just too many problems and glitches, and I had to get a time-sensitve solution up and running NOW.

    It is a great idea for a long extended term study with someone with more resources and time.

     

    What the remote control solution can do for example is allow you to use Skype (both ways) to set up a Skype call for a senior, post a photograph on a senior's computer. 

     

    Unfortunately there a lot of well-meaning individuals who do not understand the issues involved with seniors and computing at all.  They make lots of unworkable solutions that would work for someone else but not for many older seniors.

     

    Best of luck with your research.

     

    J

  • captino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you for your interest and comments on this whole thing.  I will definitely check out "Time Machine," and I've started a file of potential apps that may be part of the solution. 

     

    From reading your comments, one thing did become clear - - your experience has been with seniors with somewhat better cognifive skills than the seniors I encounter at this so-called "memory care" facility where my m-i-l stays.  But if this is to be useful, it must be adaptable to various cognifive levels, just as any child (or adult) game must be. 

     

     

    One of you commenters spoke of remote applications where a developer would be plugged into the machine owned by the senior, in order to...why this was necessary was lost on me.  I'm assuming you were speaking of something like LapLink or LogMeIn, but I'm guessing this would be needed for tweaking the ipad with the assistance and involvement of the senior user/developer, who might be in a different state.

     

    One person suggested that my goal might not be achievable with an iPad -- that a PC or Mac would be needed to meet the needs of people.  That may well be, but I strongly hope that a laptop is *not* going to be required, for many many reasons. 

     

    I can see that I've a lot of work ahead of me, and I hope that some of you have an interest in this so that I can enjoy your input as I move (crawl) forward.  I do have the advantage of knowing one person here in Illinois (I live in Chicago) who has developed several sophiticaed iphone/iPad apps, so getting the device to do what we want will not likely be a huge problem.  The problem is going to be keeping the operational level within reach of these seniors who have lots of time on their hands, but very little knowledge of the workings of computers.  Of the most value would be someone who has been conducting classes teaching seniors how to send/receive emails, surf the Internet, find items they want to read about, and listen to music from their own era from a library that is easy to collect and compile.  Thank you -- Captino

  • captino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    JeffreyIimm - thank you for your response.  I confess I do not understand all of it, which I alluded to in my response, above.  Are you saying that you use this remote function to better learn the problems and responses that seniors encounter when they are trying out something that you are developing for the laptop or for an iPad?  I did not envision having the iPad or laptop set up so that a senior and I could both be on the computer, interacting with it, and I just assume that you would only want that setup so you could explore the conduct of the senior so you could best configure the laptop or pad.

     

    I confess I did not give thought to the problems associated with developing a program that would simplify communication to the point where the senior actually placed a Skype call to another person.  I did think it would be possible to set up a simple procedure for emailing a friend or relative, but obviously a call in real time would be great.  Problem is, that a call placed through Skype has its chare of complexities, and the seniors to whom I am exposed could never master the process. A simple email, maybe, but not a skype call.  However, everyone functions at different levels, and a high functioning senior *should* be able to handle a skype call.

     

    The important thing here is that eveyrone who is interested, and who is exposed to senior citizens, share their thoughts and ideas for coming up with an IPad that will get the job done.

     

    Thanks!

     

    captino

  • Susan Howard Calculating status...

    The senior may enjoy the picture frame feature for family photos.

  • appleuser1322 Level 3 Level 3 (670 points)

    Hi Captino,  I posted this last night in response to a thread you had said similar things in and I'm not sure you are aware that I did.

     

    I've recently been researching this very subject, also for family.

     

    Your suggestions are excellent!!!

     

    A month ago I thought as you have said that Apple needs to pay attention to the elderly with needs. I started my research and found that Apple has actually done a lot that can help your MIL and others in these situations.

     

    My concern, which I am in the midst of... is that Apple needs to pay more attention to and advertise to our increasing senior (many with needs) population, many with disposable income and if not, many who have adult children who will learn that they can keep their (our) parents living more vibrant lives as they age and will gladly pay for their parents, etc., to stay connected to the world.

     

    When I started looking for info, I had to google my questions and was often directed to the Apple website. I was amazed at what I learned! There is so much your MIL will be able to learn and do. It cannot do (yet) every great idea you listed, but it's a start.

     

    We recently bought my father-in-law an ipad 2 from the Apple refurb store.

    It still has 'you tube' so no need to add another app to the opening screen of apps. And it does not get too hot for to hold! It does not have Siri for voice dictation, but there are workarounds for that. You can make a folder to keep unused apps off that screen so less confusion for her.

     

    All ipads have voice recognition. She can hover over the screen and, for example, as she scans, the voice will tell her what each app is and when it's what she wants, she just presses it with her finger. She can make print very big by swiping fingers.

     

    She can have free apps for news and so much else. You can get Netflix or Amazon Prime at your home and set her up with your account. She can see some of those movies she loved years ago and see them again, from the comfort of her bed.

     

    I think one of the most important things for her to stay connected will be FaceTime.Children, grand children, old friends, etc., can connect with her and she with you and them and she will see you!

     

    You can get everyone she knows to get pictures together, scan/have them scanned and send you a cd. You can put those on your computer, sync the ipad with your computer, and she can go through old pictures (good for memory or to momentarily spark some joy in her!)  A slide show with her music!

     

    You can take her old cds (probably not many in cd form) or buy/borrow cds/music and make a playlist for her that will also be synced to her ipad. itunes can be an app on the opening screen.

     

    I will get back to you in the morning with links to info.

     

    There are so many millions (at least) of us for whom this subject is near and dear to our hearts as we care for our aging parents/family with needs. 

     

    Hope this helps.

  • appleuser1322 Level 3 Level 3 (670 points)

    Hi Captino,

     

    Please note I sent this earlier today to the thread you posted on yesterday.

     

    If you haven't yet, in the box near the top right on your posts only, click on receive e-mail notifications. Then you won't have to search through to find any responses you might get from the threads you are participating in.

     

    One of my big concerns is that Apple should advertise to seniors with or without many of the issues that often accompany aging. The ipad's target audience did not start out advertising to toddlers, but we know they're using them and they are included in the new iphone 5 for photos and itunes. So let's get the increasing elderly population involved.

     

    First, you might want to contact Apple corp offices in Cupertino and see if someone will listen to your suggestions. (I have sent them the links below.) The more Apple is aware that there is a real  need, they will hopefully increase focus and develop more to make the ipad usable for our elderly with needs, which varies from person to person.

     

    I'd also like to suggest you start your own thread, posting in the title something like "How can an elderly person with dimentia benefit from ipad?" Then, copy the info you wrote in your post above here.

     

    Here are some links that might interest you. The information is out there that many elderly people with needs can be helped by and are benefitting using an ipad. There are also links to support user forums.

     

    Reviews in Press – iPads for Elderly, Dimentia, Alzheimer’s, etc.

    http://betanews.com/2010/03/08/who-should-buy-the-ipad-hint-people-of-a-certain- age-and-that-s-not-you/

     

    http://olderpeoplesday.co.uk/2013/05/13/how-tablets-and-apps-can-combat-loneline ss-and-help-the-elderly-join-the-digital-revolution/

     

    http://www.mlive.com/business/index.ssf/2012/04/is_ipad_right_for_grandma_a_te.h tml

     

    http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/thinking-tech/ipad-opens-digital-doors-for-the-e lderly/3674

     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndkIP7ec3O8

    A 100 year old woman’s reaction to using ipad for the first time and her limerick homage to the ipad

     

    http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/10_34/b4192039623670.htm

     

    http://www.qt.com.au/news/seniors-clicking-on-to-an-exciting-new-world/1857217/

     

    http://www.zdnet.com/ipad-mini-bringing-the-elderly-into-the-digital-age-7000008 817/

     

    http://tabtimes.com/news/ittech-stats-research/2012/06/11/study-young-and-elderl y-will-help-ipad-use-double-year

     

    http://wcrz.com/elderly-man-finds-alternative-use-for-ipad-video/

    Above is just a little humor. Clearly German Dad needed lessons from his daughter.

     

    http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2011-09-26/technology/os-ipad-2-elderly-flor ida-20110923_1_ipad-lumarie-polivka-west-nursing-home

     

    http://www.caring.com/articles/activities-for-dementia-alzheimers-patients

    The above points out activities for dementia and alzheimer’s. And an ipad can assist them with most of the things on this list!

     

    http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/the-best-life/2011/04/25/why-the-ipad-appeal s-to-older-users

     

    http://www.theage.com.au/national/education/voice/ageing-well-20130404-2h8dq.htm l

    (Scroll down (study) to ‘technology to keep the elderly connected to the world. ‘

     

    http://www.relativematters.org/digital-technology-social-media-and-older-people/

    http://www.relativematters.org/ten-reasons-why-ipads-are-magic-for-older-people/

     

    http://www.relativematters.org/ten-smart-apps-for-older-people-to-use-on-their-i pad-part-two/

     

     

    Below are some discussions from the Apple Support Communities – Some interesting thoughts and many views on some of these by people who clearly have an interest in the subject of ipad use for the elderly, dementia, alzheimer’s, etc.

     

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/2588325?start=0&tstart=0    (25,558 views)

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/11328856#11328856          (17,025 views)

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/11537562#11537562          (4,140 views)

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/12172758#12172758          (1,059 views)

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/18201490#18201490          (2,150 views) *

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/15220081#15220081          (1,107 views)

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/17529390#17529390           (729 views)

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/17765211#17765211          (551 views)

     

     

    * Interesting video suggested in this thread

     

    http://vimeo.com/mme/techrally

  • captino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you 1322. I have opted for mail copies, but I *am* new to Apple support groups. It sounds as though you've given this issue more thought than me! I agree that getting Apple to "see" the importance of this is fundamental to success. So, I'm going to see that they come around on the issue. A specially designed iPad could become standard issue for a patient with special issues.

     

    I welcome your messages and I'd welcome an alternate name as opposed to "Number 1322"!

     

    Captino

  • appleuser1322 Level 3 Level 3 (670 points)

    Funny! Most people have these kinds of names and I just follow suit.

     

    Anyway, I'm forwarding a thread that someone posted last week. I love that hte discussions will grow and people looking for help/knowledge won't have to search back to 2010.

     

    You are very technical and specific and that's great. I hope you can forward your ideas to Apple Cupertino and if your friend can help with apps, great! There are many developers here on the Apple site offering help to developers. It can also be very financially lucrative for both of you! Keep going! (Apple app developers earned over $10 billion... check out the WWDC that just took place at Apple. Hey, anything to further motivate people to help our aging population stay involved in our world!

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5078084?start=15&tstart=0

     

    Keep trying 'til you get it done!

     

    And thanks!

  • tonefox Level 5 Level 5 (7,700 points)

    Conversations like this scare me. I'm seeing 70 only a couple of years away, and often wonder how long it will be before I am a "senior" who will cause such admirable support. With the greatest respect, I hope the parent in question is a lot older than I am.  Best Wishes.

  • appleuser1322 Level 3 Level 3 (670 points)

    Don't worry, Tonefox, you're okay. Compared to so many, you are a kid. 

     

    The people involved in these past few threads with this subject, as far as I've read, are in their 80's and up. And even millions who are still 'with it,' don't have the knowledge and spirit and energy you have to be so consistently as involved as you are on this forum.

     

    My Mom is 86 and will be 87 in a few months. She has small memory lapses which always scare me, but in a few years she had a number of serious health issues. She's well now. My father-in-law, for whom we recently bought an ipad for his birthday (ergo all my over-research re ipad) just turned 91 - and fyi - while his vision and physical mobility are an issue, his mind is completely intact, and others in the threads are what our society call elderly and in 80's or older.

     

    It's the caregivers of the elderly, and particularly elders with needs, be they sight, physical mobility, more seriously dimentia and alzheimer's who need help.) I do all I can to keep my Mom's mind okay. My great Aunt in 1981 quickly developed dimentia. Nobody, not even the geriatric specialist md who came in once a month said the word alzheimer's. My Dad never had either, but during many hospital stays would 'lose it.' Always scary, but very common. Until my Mom had to deal with so much, she and I were the caregivers. I'm my Mom's (siblings just show up if it's convenient.)

     

    In this aging population (check census data) your (and almost my) age groups are in that growing population. What an advance in health care and knowledge that we have some control.

     

    Not too long ago, days after our 50th birthdays, my friends, my husband, and I got e-mails to join AARP - the ...of RETIRED PEOPLE!  Most of those who started Apple, Microsoft, etc., also got these letters. Are they old? No. they're vibrant.

     

    So feel free to keep up with these threads or not. But please don't feel old. You contribute here and I'm sure in other parts of your life. Eat well, get check-ups - insist on a battery of all vitamin deficiency tests, and walk, walk, walk, around your block, up and down the street, in your home. Move. And most importantly, have human contact in person whenever possible. If not... well, you know all about facetime.

     

    And in two years you will be a Senior (why did you pick 70? Heck, make it 90!) for census/target market purposes, being a senior is not an insult. It is an age you have reached and nothing more... 50 is the new 30... 70 is the new 50.

     

    And if you don't agree with me, what the heck are you doing with and being so knowledgeable about an ipad?

     

    Check these out, Tonefox... you could teach these wonderful people how much more they can do with their ipads. Great for them and we all need to get Apple to showcase the elderly with needs? On board, Tonefox? I hope so, you 68ish year old Kid. Haha.

     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g1zbN_-lF-Y

    How wonderful for William Hoffman. But you're years' ahead. It's our parents who aren't there cognitively that Apple needs to care for. Hey, they're still paying taxes. At his age, you can still be helping people on these forums.

     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9KKkmUxTnQ0

1 2 Previous Next

Actions

More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)

Legend

  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.