Use of telecommunications technology has grown among seniors in the United States during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Parks Associates.
The firm said that during the pandemic, 29% of those 65 and older have used video conferencing, 27% have used telehealth/remote consultation services, 22% have used a grocery store delivery or pick-up service and 55% have an online video service subscription.
The press release about the seniors technology pandemic findings said that the shift is “very pronounced” among this demographic.
“As just one example, use of telehealth services more than quadrupled among this age group compared to 2019,” Parks Associates Senior Analyst Kristen Hanich said in a press release. “These changes pervade all aspects of life, including increasing adoption of video conferencing and home delivery services.”
The firm suggests that companies need to recognize this change and implies that seniors’ increased use of tech tools will continue after the crisis ends. “Companies deploying connected solutions need a comprehensive strategy that crosses multiple industries, including healthcare, automation, and security, to ensure they maximize the value proposition for their solution,” Hanich said in the press release about seniors technology pandemic issues.
The pandemic has impacted every demographic group. In some cases, the impact is the same between groups and in some cases the impact is unique. Seniors, who are more likely to be isolated and to have health issues, arguably are the most effected.
The telecommunications industry is aware of this and has reacted. For instance, seniors are a target group of Comcast’s Internet Essentials discounted internet service, and Comcast changed the rules during the pandemic to provide 60 days of free service.
In June, Cox launched the Cox One Call a Day program in multiple markets. The idea is to call out to seniors, many of whom are inordinately impacted by social distancing guidelines made necessary by the pandemic.