Recommendations for someone elderly

Discussion in 'Special Needs iPad Forum' started by _Agent86_, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. _Agent86_

    _Agent86_ iPF Noob

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    Hi all,

    A family friend of a coworker has just entered the last place he'll live. Having just come out of hospital, he's quite weak and can't use his computer, so it won't be making the trip into constant care with him.

    Good news is Graeme's reasonably open to new tech for a 95 year old. My coworker and I can't stand the thought of him wasting away in there with no outside world contact, especially as he's spent the last couple of years slowly completing his memoirs on his computer.

    We'd like to get him an iPad, and need some advice on apps that can do the following:

    1. Read ebooks to him - is there an easy to use, capable text-to-speech ebook reader you can recommend?
    2. Record dictation for the book. Given his state, he's not going to be able to complete it, but perhaps he can leave sufficient voice notes that someone in the family can ghostwrite.
    3. Make icons and text extremely large - his eyesight is largely a thing of the past, poor bugger.

    also,

    4. Does the iPad have any way of connecting to a TV? Thinking of setting up a big screen so he can read more comfortably.

    Also, some advice on security if you please - from past experience we mistrust workers in constant care facilities and would hate for the iPad to end up on eBay. I'm going to get it physically treated with Datadots or SelectaDNA but as for software, if there's an option that doesn't lock Graeme out as well I'd really be keen on hearing about it. If he has any trouble with it we won't hear about it until the next weekly visit, he wouldn't want to trouble us with an unscheduled question - so simpler the better.

    I am by no means a fan of anything Apple but I grudgingly admit the iPad's the best bet on making this guy's last few years a little more liveable.

    Ideas well appreciated! Cheers
     
  2. chisaki

    chisaki iPad Fan

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    Most elderly have some sight degradation and have trouble reading small print. Although much larger that the iPhone/IpodTouch, the iPad still has small print. I say try them and see if they are comfortable with it and can read the small print.
     
  3. maryinredding

    maryinredding iPad Fan

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    If you look in the general settings on the ipad there is a Accessibility tab. Click on it and you will see Voice Over, Zoom, Large Text. That may make a BIG difference.
     
  4. maryinredding

    maryinredding iPad Fan

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    You can make your letters bigger in email and notes it says. Also, if he needed to see a webpage bigger all he would have to do is pinch it bigger.
     
  5. maryinredding

    maryinredding iPad Fan

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    I played around with the Accessibility things and there are all kinds of things there to make it easier for someone who can't see very well. I wish my parents had lived long enough to see the iPad. They would have been blown away by it.
     
  6. DontUnderstandMyIpad

    DontUnderstandMyIpad iPad Guru

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    Yes, you can adjust the text size, but it is not much of a help, because it only works in notes and email, every other text stays the same size, and even in mail only the main text size increases, the email overview stays the same size.

    Also there is the Zoom option as mentioned previously, it is activated by pressing 3 fingers twice, which for me renders it useless, because often while typing iOS interprets me typing fast as the zoom gesture and zooms in. You should also take into account that Zoom zooms in on the screen, sadly even the keyboard, which means that some keys will be outside the screen, making writing impossible.

    And then there is the VoiceOver, which is peculiar to say the least. It puts an overlay, that whenever you press a button, it tells you what is selected without pressing that button. In order to press anything, you have to press the button twice within a split second, which gets very frustrating very fast and I don't see an elderly person using this comfortably.

    This might sound very negative, but what I am emphasizing here is that the Accessibility options are not useful in their current state, which means that you will have to focus on finding apps which are easily usable.

    For recording, I would either use Voice Recorder for iPad, simply because it has a straight forward interface, very few settings and buttons and is thus easy to use, or if a little more organization of the recordings is required Audio memos.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2011
  7. jimdd

    jimdd iPF Noob

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    For setting up for elderly people, you can do all of the obvious accessability stuff like turning on Voiceover in the control panel. Then you can have iBooks read to you page by page but you have to use Voiceover for everything else too, and as DontUnderstand said it's a pain.

    There aren't a ton of apps built for old users, but there are some built around assisting, which you can find by searching 'elderly' or 'senior' on the iTunes store. But you would've guessed that. This might sound insulting for him, but "Alzheimers" and "Toddler" are actually good searches for fun, simple games and especially memory games. Check out "Call Bingo" for a good social game.

    Paw Paw Mail needs a subscription but is an email app with everything big that looks like it could work for your dad. It has a demo. AARP has like 12 magazines available as apps. And don't forget to check out iPhone apps. Unless he has the best eyesight of any 95 year old out there, they're just fine at 2x unless they use the on screen keyboard.
     
  8. _Agent86_

    _Agent86_ iPF Noob

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    Thanks for the ideas, all - I think I'm gonna head over to an Apple store this weekend and give it a go.

    At the moment though the small print is not good news - definitely no go, apparently the family have to write reminder notes to him in huge block capitals so he can read them.

    So - about big screen - might I be able to show the iPad's interface on a large monitor or TV via HDMI, and will it scale just like a PC would? I know it seems like defeating the purpose of having a tablet but I'm thinking that the combination would be useable more comfortably than a wireless kb/mouse on a regular computer.

    I hadn't even thought about social games - great idea! I don't know the guy personally but I'd be surprised if we can't find something he'll like that can keep him engaged.

    Thanks!
     
  9. MayaD

    MayaD iPF Novice

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    For security consider the "iPad Lock" which you could use to lock the pad to his bed or wheelchair. This also has a built in stand that might come in handy.
     
  10. charles2004

    charles2004 iPF Noob

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    voice reminder app is quite helpful for me as I am now getting older and always forget what I have to do or someone asked me to do.
    Each time I take my medicine , I then set my next schedule using the voice reminder app. really helpful as now I will never miss to take my medicine anymore
    but if I am getting older later, maybe I even will forget to use my iPad for such thing... hopefully this is not happening quite soon
     
  11. LLL

    LLL iPF Noob

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    There are a number of free quality audio books, such as Treasure Island, that you can download to the iPad. Search the App Store by entering "my-audio-books".
     
  12. The OB

    The OB Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks for your contribution LLL. Although you are responding to posts well over two years old, with the likelihood that the participants will not be coming back now to read your post, the general contents of this thread may well be useful in our Special Needs sub-forum. I'm transferring this thread to that forum.
    Regards, Andrew


    Sent from Oz using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  13. n4uau

    n4uau iPad Fan

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    I teach an ipad class at our Senior Center so I'm interested in learning more here. I find many of the older people are very interested in learning ipad but often the grandkids don't have the patience to teach them. Books of course let you make text very large, library audiobooks are great too. I am told the blind can also go to a url, don't recall where, and get books for the blind.
     

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