The technological explosion of the past few decades has fundamentally changed how we all live. It’s had a particularly noteworthy impact on what it means to grow old as today, more than 70% of all adults over the age of 65 are online, using web-based technology.

Technological devices have also had a profound influence on older adults. There are modern devices that are being used in unique ways to help the elderly live happier, healthier lives. Here are eight of the most impressive.

Fitbit (And Other Wearable Health Technologies)

It’s no secret that looking after our health becomes even more important as we age. Companies like Fitbit are making that incredibly easy to do. These wearable technologies fit easily on a person’s arm and allow them to receive both real-time and historical health data whenever they want.

Fitbit and devices like it also tend to integrate nicely into smartphone applications. These enable older adults to accurately see how their health is trending and to make fast adjustments if any are needed. These types of technological features simply weren’t possible with the fitness-related technologies of the past.

Here are a few resources to consider:

A Guide to Fitness Trackers for Seniors

6 Versions of Fitbit for Seniors

WIDEX MOMENT™ Digital Hearing Aid

The WIDEX MOMENT™ Completely-in-canal hearing aid (CIC) allows older adults to control programs and change the volume with an app. Even better, the hearing aid also lets older adults rely on its intelligent automation to make adjustments automatically.

Today’s new and improved hearing aids like WIDEX MOMENT utilize technology to amplify what older adults actually need to hear rather than amplifying the low-level noise associated with hearing aids of the past, providing a more natural sound quality.

Here are a few resources to consider:

Hearing Aid Buying Guide [Consumer Reports]

Does Medicare Cover Hearing Aids?

ElliQ from Intuition Robotics

Artificial intelligence and robotics are also having an impact on the aging process. This is best exemplified by Intuition Robotics and their debut product, the ElliQ.

The ElliQ is a device that’s meant to help older adults manage loneliness and social isolation. They refer to it as a “sidekick for happier aging.” The device is proactive and uses pattern-recognition software to engage an older adult in conversation at opportune times and to prompt them to take their medication, engage in healthy behaviors, and reach out to friends and family.

Here are a few resources to consider:

How Robots Can Relieve Isolation For Older People

Smart Robot For The Elderly

Hero Digital Pill Dispenser

Pill dispensers like Hero’s make it incredibly easy for an older adult to stick to their doctor-prescribed medication routine. It can hold up to 10 different pills and will automatically disperse them at the correct time each day.

The dispenser can hold up to a 90-day supply of medication, so older adults or their caregivers can set it up once every few months and simply take the pills that it dispenses when it dispenses them. Gone are the days of missed and inaccurate doses.

Here are a few resources to consider:

Best Pill Dispenser for Seniors
Medication Errors: Cut Your Risk With These Tips

Robotic Pets

Caring for a pet can be tough on an older adult. But the companionship that they offer can be invaluable for a happier aging process. Enter the robotic pet.

Companies like Hasbro are building robotic cats and dogs to provide them with a sense of comfort and companionship. These devices have become invaluable to many older adults who live alone, as they enable the older adult to enact with the robotic animal just as they might interact with a real pet.

Here are a few resources to consider:

Robot Dogs Can Help Seniors

Lifelike Robotic Pets Are Helping Seniors Avoid Loneliness

Amazon Echo Dot (Alexa)

Voice-activated home devices like the Amazon Echo Dot have also done wonders for older adults. It enables older adults to control all of the devices in their home with just their voice. They can use it to listen to music, play games, receive news updates, and even create grocery lists.

Here are a few resources to consider:

Is Amazon Echo For Seniors?
Amazon Alexa For Seniors 

Tile Mate

Many older adults have trouble remembering where they’ve left important objects like keys, remotes, and wallets. The Tile Sticker solves this problem. It’s a small, Bluetooth-enabled device that can be placed on just about anything.

Then, if an older adult can’t find that item, all that they need to do is pull out their smartphone and view the application. The app will direct them to where the item is hiding. This simple innovation can reduce lots of the stress and anxiety that an older adult might otherwise experience during an average day.

GrandPad

Though we are becoming more connected than ever before, this technology boom is also having an adverse effect among the elderly population. Social Media and Smartphones present a large learning gap for a lot of older adults and may create isolation. Fortunately, GrandPad bridges some of that gap. The GrandPad is a senior-friendly tablet. Older adults can listen to music, play games and video chat with loved ones. The best part is that the tablet can be used anywhere without Wi-Fi.

When the product is first bought, there’s an onboarding process. A trained professional walk the senior through each of the tablet’s features. He or she will also set up contacts, add favorite songs and do other custom things to personalize the tablet. The trained professional will also set up another family member or loved one as an admin to also help manage the tablet.

While technology often seems overwhelming for some older adults, there is little doubt about how much digital technology is making life easier and better for the senior population and those responsible for their care.