It�s a cliche, but often true, that older people are, shall we say, a little reticent to
embrace tech. They either think its stupid, will break if they touch it, or it is spying
on them. Let�s work on that. I�m B.C. with the Top 5 tech gear that an older
person is gonna love, from a list by CNET blogger John Scott Lewinski of easy
and fun to use stuff. Warm �em up with these before you hit �em with a rooted
Nook Color tethered to a hacked Android 4G phone.
#5 The Zomm
This one looks disturbingly like an Advair inhaler, so make sure Dad doesn�t
screw that one up. Zomm pairs to Pop�s smartphone - and we�re making a big
assumption there - and if he gets 20-40 feet away from the phone the Zomm
sounds an alarm, reminding him that he might be about to leave his phone
behind. My quibble here is with the range, I mean 40 feet could just be the walk
to kitchen. But this is the ideal gift for when you really want to say, �Dad I think
you have Dementia�. Oh, and Zomm can also be tracked on the web, don�t tell
hm that part. Cost: $89.99.
#4 Cobra PhoneLynx
Looks vaguely obscene, but if you can get mom past that this is a cool way to
connect a cell phone to a land line phone. That means she can get rid of her land
line - and its bill - have just a cell phone, but still make calls on all those old touch
tone handsets around her place, the one�s show crocheted all those cozies for.
#3 Archos 3-5 Home Connect
This is how you give grandma something Android based without having to spend
the next 9 months of your life teaching her the interface. It�s sort of a Chumby
without the design cues that say �I think you�re becoming infantile�. Nice color
touch screen to drive its clock, web radio, weather, traffic and news functions.
You�re still gonna have to hook her up with Wi-Fi, though, so pack a lunch. $149
#2 SuperTooth HD (http://www.supertooth.net/US/HD/)
Not to be confused with the �super teeth� in grandpa�s glass by the bed, this is a
bluetooth handsfree speakerphone for older cars -- any car. Gramps won�t have
to fool with a bluetooth earpiece he can barely see let alone operate. This HD
model also has speech to text so he can be dictating texts and emails while he
drives. Great way to get to your inheritance sooner. $129.
Before we get to #1 piece of tech for older, tech-hateful folks, let�s remember
theirs is the generation that gave us super heroes and as Swedish artist Andreas
Englund paints them, aging superheroes. (super the URL of his site as we show
these.) I like the one where he�s winded after kicking a whole bunch of ass.
#1 The iPad
The iPad is certainly the most powerful and best known piece of digital gear,
even for the older & less techie crowd. It does at least a few things anyone older
will love, but beware: Make sure you�re giving them an iOS 5 version or you�ll
need a PC to do set up and updates, which will spook computerless Aunt Edna.
Also, think about getting her a 3G version or you�ll also be dealing with getting
her a broadband account and a wi-fi rig at home. $629 and up for 3G.
For more, etc.