There has been a striking growth in older people’s use of technology over the last year
More than a quarter (27%) of older people use tablets and are on social media
Older people are taking to smart and social technology in outstanding numbers, Ofcom figures show. Ofcom, is a competition authority for the broadcasting industries of the United Kingdom. Their studies have shown there has been a sharp rise in the number of people over-75’s using tablet computers.
Almost half of the older generation aged 65 to 74 (48%) now have a social media profile. As do 41% of over-75’s – up from 19% in 2015. The report noted a “striking growth in aged people use of technology between 2015 and 2016”.
Around nine in 10 “social seniors” over the age of 65 (87%) opt for a Facebook account. But a smaller proportion use WhatsApp (6%) and Instagram (1%). However, while 44% of over-75’s go online, more than half do not, and have no plans to do so.
The Ofcom study found that now older adults are more connected than ever. Only, they spend less than half the time online that the younger generation does. At 15 hours a week for over-65’s compared with 32 hours among 16 to 24-year old. Social seniors also seem to have a more positive experience online. 72% of over-65’s reported that they had seen nothing to offend or upset them in the last year. While older internet users are increasingly active online, 20% of over-65’s describe themselves as “not confident” online.
Ofcom suggested that this could be because older users are new to the internet. With 21% of users over 75 going online for the first time in the last five years – twice the wider average.