UX for technology used by an ageing population

The trend of an ageing population is reflected across Europe. It is estimated that by 2035 nearly a quarter of the population in the United Kingdom will be over 65 years. Ageing is traditionally associated with a decrease in mobility and social interaction, and this can have detrimental effects upon well being and access to good nutrition and health. Fortunately there has been much research into the effects of age upon product interaction.

UX and usability consultants Christopher Wilkinson and Dhaval Gandhi conducted a systematic review of the research literature, and created a framework to organise the issues that directly affect the use and adoption of technology by older users. It is a concise and simple tool, easy to apply across numerous products to aid design thinking and evaluation from an older person’s perspective.

The framework presented can be used as a benchmarking or scoping tool in thinking about the design of assistive technologies that particularly consider older people’s needs. It can easily be applied across numerous products to aid design thinking and evaluation from an older person’s perspective.