Connect with your loved ones, stay informed with the latest in news, or listen to music, and many more. You can do all these easily with a smart display. Smart displays are great companions for older adults who need a wide range of connectivity and entertainment options in just one device. What makes smart displays great for older adults is the voice assistant. This feature allows them to control the device by giving simple voice commands. Now there is no need for a touch of a button.
With smart displays, you can also create a tech ecosystem within your home that suits your needs, by integrating all your smart devices at home, like smart lights, thermostat, or security cameras. So the next time you want to turn on your living room lights hands-free, just voice out the name of your smart display and simply say “turn on living room lights.” Read on for some fun things to do with smart displays for older adults.
How can older adults use Smart Displays to have fun?
During the pandemic, smart technology has made a lot of things possible for everyone. Thanks to our smart devices, like our phones and computers, many of us are able to keep in touch with friends and family, get what we need through online shopping, and see the latest movies. Smart displays can do all that and more! Here are 7 suggestions on how to make the most of your smart display:
1. Connect with loved ones
Connect with your loved ones everyday, whether they are in the other room or halfway around the world. Some devices such as the Facebook Portal are designed with video calling in mind and excel in this function. Google Nest Hub Max has a large screen that allows for better viewing and easy interaction. The new Amazon Echo Show 10 can follow you during a video call so you can move around while on a video call, and the camera will still keep you in frame.
Another very important feature of the smart display is the ability to make an emergency call. If you have fallen or need help, you can voice-activate the smart display and a call will go out to your emergency contact. This is definitely a great feature for older adults living independently.
2. Stay informed
Add your most trusted news or radio app to your smart display. Many news networks have apps available where they upload the latest in current events. You don’t have to miss your next big read or the most up-to-date newscast. Use the voice command to ask for the biggest stories of the day. Most smart displays have their own weather app and show you the daily weather forecast. You can opt to feature the latest weather report on your home screen too.
You can also use your smart display to get more information about the things you like. Interested in decoupage? Learn the art of decorating things with beautiful paper art. Watch video tutorials or read step by step guides online. Have the smart display beside you as your cheat sheet as you create.
3. Listen to music with a smart display
Listening to music on a smart display is a great experience. Quickly and easily find your all-time favourite music or ask it to play today’s top hits and discover what composers today are creating. With the biggest music streaming services available, like Spotify or YouTube Music, you can access millions of songs online. Connect your smart displays to your favourite music streaming service and listen from your smart display. Many of them have both low and high frequency speakers to help increase clarity and sound quality.
4. Create a photo album
Smart displays can also function as a digital photo frame. Create a digital photo album with images of family, friends, pets and more. Take photos from your phone and share them with your smart display. Images will change every couple of minutes; display a slide show of your favourite photos to see and enjoy. Ask family and friends to regularly send you images that you can add to your photo album and show on your smart display. It’s a fun and creative way of interacting with your loved ones.
5. Play games
There is an abundance of games now available on smart displays. They range from simple audio games to touch-enabled interactive games that can be played on the screen. Some of the games include Horizontal Crosswords (Google), Daily Brain Trainer (Google), Song quiz (Amazon), and Battleship (Facebook Portal). The touch-enabled games use all features of the smart displays and allow you to interact with the screen, with combination of voice and touch controls for easy fun.
6. Explore what’s in your locale
Looking to find a bakery that makes the best croissant? Ask your smart display for local businesses nearby. Know their stores hours. Find the fastest way to get there. Or better yet, order online for delivery. Thanks to the map application, you can do all that in your smart display. The map app allows you to explore your area and other places—anywhere in the world! Do you remember your old address? Take a virtual trip to where you lived years ago by using your smart display to see what that house looks like now. Whether you’re interested in exploring different parts of your locale or even visiting your old hometown, use the street view feature to dive right into a 360-degree look at these places. It’s a great way to see the world minus the actual travel.
7. Watch videos
Catch your favourite videos with your smart display. Today, there is no shortage of videos to watch online. Watching videos on the internet goes beyond watching adorable cat videos or do-it-yourself tutorials. In fact, as TV and film productions expand into the web, you can have access to a wide range of TV and movie titles at your fingertips.
There is a slew of TV and movie streaming services out there. Different smart displays support different streaming platforms, so if you are really intent on watching Netflix on your smart display, make sure to check compatibility first. Here are a few examples of various streaming services available on different devices below:
- Google Nest Hub Max Nest Hub Max (i.e. Netflix, Disney +, and YouTube)
- Amazon Echo Show Show (i.e. Netflix, and Amazon Prime Video)
- Facebook Portal (i.e. Amazon Prime Video, and Facebook Watch)
Know the type of smart display that suits you
Smart displays offer a variety of benefits. Most of them have all the functionalities mentioned above, but it is important to consider what you will be primarily using it for. As discussed earlier, smart displays work wonders when synced with other smart devices. That’s why it’s important to consider what ecosystem (e.g. Google, Amazon, or Facebook) you or your family already use to make the learning of a new device easier. The great thing about smart displays is its ability to do most of the setup remotely so if you have a family member that can help, they can get you started on a device. Learn how to set up your smart display for you or your family, with this article, How can I pre-set up a smart display for my older family even if I can’t visit them. Also read about how you can support your older loved ones with a smart display.