“The notion that older adults dislike technology, Moody told me, is false. They dislike technology that’s hard to understand.”
January 28, 2022
By: Steve Aquino
Although it is very true accessibility is first and foremost built with disabled people in mind, it’s also very true accessibility is not exclusively the domain of the disabled. Accessibility is beneficial to literally anyone and everyone, from larger text on computers to subtitles in foreign films to meal kits and more. The discrete set of software features companies like Apple and Google include in iOS and Android, respectively, represents only a smidgen of what accessibility means conceptually. This is what makes accessibility so dynamic: as many people have various needs and tolerances, the same can be said for accessibility’s potential applications.
Consider the aged community. Amazon has poured considerable resources (most notably, Alexa) into projects designed to help senior citizens live more happily and independently. In the past few months, I’ve reported on two such efforts: Smart Properties, which helps those in assisted living communities stay better connected with loved ones and their care team; and Alexa Together, which allows seniors to use Alexa to call for help if assistance is needed, amongst other things.
K4Connect is another company dedicated to helping the aged population through accessibility. The North Carolina-based startup describes itself as a “mission-driven technology company” that works to make technology accessible (and thus empowering) to older adults and other individuals with disabilities. The company does this by unifying disparate pieces of software to make everything accessible in one place, rather than a hundred places. “[It’s] really this idea of helping them [older adults] live their optimal like, using technology, no matter their age,” said Scott Moody, K4Connect’s chief executive, in a telephone interview with me conducted last September. “So it’s the whole idea of allowing them to live [a] more independent, healthier, and happier life.[That’s] what K4Connect does.”