Wednesday, December 12, 2012

E-Readers for the Elderly

The New York Times, in “The Gift of Reading” in its New Old Age Blog, describes research that shows that elderly readers read a lighted e-book faster than they do a newspaper. The e-book benefits are substantial, especially the ability to increase the font, and to light the screen. The article is here:   And here is my comment on it:

My plea to Apple and other makers of e-readers is that they put out a version that is very, very easy to use--no small knobs, no tiny places to touch on the screen, a screen that doesn't all of a sudden jump away from the book, a good light.

My mother loved to read, and in the few years before her death at 92, I searched all of the libraries in the area to find large print books. A really easy e-reader would have been a Godsend, but there is no way that she could have managed the e-readers available now. She couldn't even work a CD player--I had to put all of her favorite music on tapes. And even working the tape player became hard.

There are enough of us boomers that, in a few years, I imagine there will be a huge market for an e-reader for the elderly.


  1. I so agree. Those e-readers aren't that easy to use even for those of us that have some computer knowledge. You would think that with technology as powerful as it is these days that someone would come up with some device that was easier to navigate. It is so important with dementia care to find fun ways to keep the mind active and an e-reader would certainly do the job. Hopefully this need will be recognized soon. Take care!

  2. Thanks for your comment. We certainly agree! I hadn't even thought about dementia care, but you're right. That is critical. Best, Mary