Ransackers gets involved in Innovations for Ageing: digital exclusion

How many of you have had negative experiences in high street phone shops while trying to buy new phones or other equipment?

Ransackers Association has had many discussions in recent years over this issue. We are all about later life learning and education: part of this is access to information and use of the web.

The throwaway society is with us and IT and communications devices wear out or start malfunctioning after 4-6 years. This is very annoying for some older people, who often try to buy things to last, and who object to replacing their kit so  often. Without working phones, tablets and pcs people can   get excluded from so much information and ways of communicating.

Ransackers  got involved in  Innovating for Ageing project, run by ILCUK (International Longevity Centre UK). The project invited organisations to pitch problems which challenge older people: so we picked this phone and tablets issue.  Out of over 100 applicants we reached the final group, and were asked to pitch to an audience of business people and boffins, who have the potential to come up with creative solutions.

Hilary’s five minute pitch (Summer 2018)

The project has now received a number of solutions, and Fussfree phones is trying to tackle some of the digital gadgets issues for older people (see their suggestion). There will be an overall winner next year. We’ll keep you posted.

Meanwhile it may be a good idea to take another person with you to the phone shop, having had a good chat about what you want from a phone , what you might be prepared to learn, and what you don’t want. Finally- if you get a smartphone you don’t have to use every single thing on it- just the bits you find useful in your lifestyle, and they do still sell cheap mobiles which are just phones.


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