Baby Boomers are reaching retirement age, and America’s demographics are shifting with them—by 2030, one in every five Americans will be age 65 or older. At the same time, advances in medicine and healthy living practices are allowing people to live longer and to remain active later in life. Together, these factors are raising new questions about caring for a population of elderly who want to remain independent even as they grapple with the health concerns that accompany old age. Indeed, a recent AARP survey found that 87% of Americans over 65 would prefer to remain in their own homes or communities as they age rather than be forced to move due to health concerns.
Internet of Things technology has the potential to make it easier for retirees to remain in their homes and retain their independence. In this episode of Deconstructing IoT, Claire and Vaughn build a connected Arduino application that lets family members know if something is amiss with their elderly relatives who live alone. It uses Streaming to log data on sound and movement, and sends alerts with our Nexmo and PagerDuty Choreos when something doesn’t seem right. Families can have peace of mind knowing that they’ll be immediately notified if their loved ones ever need help, and the elderly can maintain their independence without sacrificing access to the care they need.