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14 useful apps for Over-60s

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In today’s digital age, there is no reason for retirees to sit back and watch the world go by. Technology can help you stay connected. Seniors can now use mobile apps for intellectual development and personal growth by tracking your finances, keeping your health in check and stimulating your cognitive skills.

Smartphone and tablet apps can allow you to:

  • Keep your mind active and engaged
  • Stay connected with friends and family
  • Keep abreast of news and world events
  • Set reminders for physician appointments and to take medicines
  • Pay bills online
  • Get quick, to-the-point medical information
  • Listen to your favourite music
  • Stay well read
  • Easily take and save notes
  • Be entertained

1.   Emergency AUS

The most comprehensive source of real time emergency information in Australia. Emergency AUS sources publicly available emergency information from official sources to help you make better-informed decisions during emergencies.

Emergency AUS was the national winner of the 2013 iAwards in the community category.

Free download on both Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android (though there are additional subscription costs for accessing state by state emergency data to use with the app).

2.   Express Plus Centrelink

Developed by the Department of Human Services, this app incorporates the Express Plus Families, Job Seekers, Seniors and Students mobile apps into a single, easy to use app tailored to your particular circumstances.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

3. Health Engine

Health Engine helps you find an available doctor (GP), dentist, physiotherapist, chiropractor or psychologist, and book your appointment online. It is quick, convenient, private and free.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

4. WebMD

Helping you to keep up with your health, the app features a wide range of information on medical conditions and advice for healthy living. It can be great help during medical emergencies, and you can use its Symptoms Checker to perform a preliminary diagnosis of your issues and, if necessary, seek professional help. There are support group discussions with experts and other seniors, with whom you can exchange information on the health topics that interest you.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

5. Medisafe

Despite their best efforts, even seniors without memory problems can have a hard time keeping track of their medicines or fully complying with a treatment plan. Medisafe is a robust tool that seeks to help older adults manage their medications, set reminders, and create status reports about how well they have stuck to their medication regimen.

Free download from Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

6. Blood Pressure Monitor – Family Lite

This app is practical and easy to use – it helps to keep track of your blood pressure and provides a weight health monitor. Blood Pressure Monitor gives statistical information that can span over a lifetime, has built-in reminders, visualises data in an understandable way and includes an email import/export service that helps to communicate with healthcare providers.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

7. Pocketbook

The Pocketbook app makes personal finance ridiculously simple. Put an end to manually entering your spending and keeping track on spreadsheets. Made by Australians for Australian iPhone users.

Within 60 secs of signing-on to the app , it automatically syncs your accounts, gets 80% of your transactions automatically categorised and detects your upcoming bills. The app will send you helpful alerts for when bills are late, and bank fees are charged. Not to mention a weekly summary to keep your budget on track.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

8. Find my iPhone

This handy app can be useful for everyone, not just seniors. We all tend to lose our phones and this app can help us to find our lost iOS devices (like iPads or iPhones) and, if they are really beyond our reach, it allows us to remotely lock them.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone.

9. Voice Reading

Excellent for those who get easily tired reading long emails or web content, the app will read aloud any text shared from other apps, URLs or even text files.

Available only on Google Play for Android, though there are similar apps for Apple device users.

10. Over 40 Magnifier & Flashlight

This app is a magnifier and flashlight in one. Very useful for reading the fine print on product packaging labels and finding things in the dark.

Download for $2.99 on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

11. Crossword Classics

Apps for seniors are not only about finance or health – they’re also about nourishing your cognitive skills and training your memory. Crosswords is a great app for all those who love to bend their minds in solving crossword puzzles. Top recommendation: the crossword guru, The New York Times, has given it great reviews.

Download for $14.99 on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

12. Lumosity

Another great opportunity for cognitive development is offered by Lumosity, an app that features games designed by neuroscientists to enhance memory and cognitive speed. Lumosity provides personalised brain training programs that can focus on improving your attention, memory, speed or problem-solving capacities.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android. Offers in-app purchases.

13. Evernote

Recipes, grocery lists, and to-do lists…Evernote is a versatile app that unifies all your note taking into one system that syncs across all your devices so you can, for example, write a shopping list on your iPad at home, and read it at the grocery store on your Galaxy phone.

Free download on Apple iTunes for iPhone/iPad and Google Play for Android.

14. Cook iPad App

This is believed to be Australia’s top cooking app, which has had approximately 900,000 downloads since launching in 2013. It has also been on the list of the Top 10 free to download food and drink apps in the US and UK.

Cook is essentially a recipe scrapbook which creates one single place for you to create and store recipes. Whilst there are many other apps that offer recipes, Cook differs in that it is also a social network where people talk, share, compare and give feedback on recipes. What better way to document and keep track of family recipes.

Available for free download only on Apple iTunes for iPad.

The world we live in is constantly changing and one of the most important things to recognise is that we need to adapt to these changes. Technology can make our lives simpler and, as a result, we can enjoy more time with our family and friends.