Senior Savvy: Helping Older Adults Learn New Tech Skills

Written by: Lauren Strait

Staying connected through technology can improve quality of life for older adults. But learning to use new devices can be daunting. That’s where Senior Savvy comes in.

Founder Abbie Richie joined Bob Roth, host of the podcast Health Futures, Taking Stock in You, to discuss her Arizona-based company’s work. Their conversation provided insights into how technology benefits seniors when tailored to their needs.

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Richie first helped older neighbors use their devices by volunteering tech support. She saw a widespread need for basic training and ongoing assistance.

In 2018, Richie established Senior Savvy to provide individual and group tech instruction at senior communities. Workshops like “Cell Phone Secrets for Seniors” aim to boost confidence through a compassionate approach.

When COVID-19 halted in-person visits, Richie pivoted to Zoom classes at residents’ urging. This allowed Senior Savvy to expand its reach nationally and internationally.

Roth and Richie explored innovations like smart watches, voice controls, captioning apps and more. Roth stressed the importance of collaborating with end users when developing new products.

For example, Fellowship Square in Mesa has tested Amazon Alexa in innovative ways for years. The voice assistant now handles everything from lunch menus to thermostat adjustments.

Key tips Richie shared for learning technology included:

  • Customizing devices based on individual needs and preferences
  • Keeping instructions simple and avoiding tech jargon
  • Focusing on attitude rather than age or aptitude

Seniors shouldn’t be intimidated by technology. With patient guidance tailored to their abilities, they can stay connected through smart devices.

Listen to the full discussion about helping aging adults learn new tech skills on the Health Futures podcast. Get more resources at and


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