A recent study by the AARP reveals that technology use among older Americans is on the rise. The study showed that more than 70 percent of Americans in their 50s, 60s, and 70s have come to rely on technology tools to stay connected with family and friends.
The study also revealed that many tech users 50 and older feel technology is not designed with an older crowd in mind. Overall, roughly 40% of older Americans said today’s technology is too complex, lacks helpful instructions, and doesn’t provide an acceptable user experience.
In response to these complaints, some developers are fine-tuning their technology options to include functionality that serves the needs of older users.
Over a decade ago, Apple’s Siri introduced the masses to the power and convenience of voice-activated apps. In the years that followed, smart speakers expanded the use of voice activation, allowing millions of users to ask Alexa to play their favorite music, place a phone call, or dim the lights.
By integrating voice commands like those that summon Siri or Alexa, developers can make apps much more accessible for older Americans. Apps that respond to voice commands allow those who are visually impaired to effectively access mobile services, making it unnecessary for those with declining dexterity or motor skills to use small buttons on apps when attempting to navigate or provide information.
Cognitive decline is an issue faced by older adults that makes learning new technology difficult. Yet, voice commands provide a more natural and less intimidating interface than taps, swipes, or other gestures.
A report issued in 2020 showed that the fintech sector was not significantly serving the needs of older users, finding that personal finance apps — such as those that provided access to banking services — were not intuitive. It also found that institutions developing the apps did not consider the needs of older users.
Today, developers seem to be finally figuring out how to make fintech relevant and accessible to older users. Voice activation is one of the features that has proven to be empowering.
The Eyeballs Financial Finntalk App is a notable example of the new generation of user-friendly financial apps tailored to meet the needs of seniors. It utilizes a unique technology known as Remote Inquiry Questions to provide a snapshot of financial client questions that are automatically relayed to the respective professional financial advisor dashboard. Now a financial advisor knows what their clients are thinking about without having a direct live conversation. Additionally, the app provides answers to the types of questions that are most relevant to older users, which can be accessed via voice commands. The Finntalk App is revolutionizing how seniors interact with their financial profiles, enabling them to receive complete financial answers quickly and hassle-free.
This app even goes further to serve the needs of older adults by providing voice responses to questions about their financial status. When users ask about the balance of their retirement account or the amount of a recent deposit, for example, the app provides a voice response, rather than simply displaying information on the screen. For those who are visually impaired, such features dramatically improve accessibility.
Artificial intelligence also plays a role in enhancing performance and features in the new generation of fintech apps, which promises to be beneficial for clients regardless of their age. By analyzing the ways in which clients use fintech, AI can identify the issues that are most important to them. Armed with this “advisor intelligence,” human financial advisors can provide more informed and insightful guidance to their clients.
Voice-activated fintech apps simulate the human touch older users have come to expect from financial advisors. Developers who leverage voice activation in their fintech products not only increase accessibility for senior users, but also enhance their experience. AI in finance promises to make the experience even more user-friendly. In the end, understanding and meeting the needs of older users drives greater adoption, engagement, and success for fintech apps.
About the Author
Mitchell Morrison has over 40 years of experience as a financial expert, having held senior positions with Financial West Group, Skyway Capital Markets, FourStar Wealth Advisors, E.F Hutton, Travelers Portfolio Group, Smith Barney, and Charitable Alliance Foundation. He is the founder and creator of Eyeballs Financial LLC, a fintech application that is the first to provide up-to-date information pairing trusted advisor intelligence and artificial intelligence. The Eyeballs Finntalk app is the only U.S. patent with Remote Inquiry Questions, which empowers it to provide up-to-date information on your financial portfolio with instant communication with your advisor for any questions or concerns.