K4Connect will distribute more than 8,000 Echo Dots programmed with K4Community to help meet the demand for more social interaction in senior living during the COVID-19 pandemic.
By: Seth Thomas Gulledge
May 29, 2020
A Triangle tech company already seeing a massive spike in demand during the pandemic has a new initiative alongside a global tech giant to roll out its product to thousands more seniors.
This week, Raleigh-based K4Connect, announced a new initiative supported by Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) to distribute more than 8,000 Echo Dots – Amazon’s smart speaker – to independent and assisted living centers along the West Coast that have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The devices will be loaded with the company’s K4Community program designed for residents and staff of senior-living communities.
“The opportunity to work with Amazon to serve older adults through this donation effort was obvious for us,” said the company’s CEO and founder Scott Moody in a prepared statement. “Covid-19 has quickly magnified areas where voice technology can help, and fast . . . people need relief now.”
The devices will go to more than 40 senior-living communities, adding to the already more than 800 communities the company is serving.
It also come during a massive spike in demand for the company. Late last month, Moody said the company had grown nearly 500 percent during the year, due mostly to its product going from a “nice to have” to a “we have to have this.”
According to the company, the devices were donated by Amazon as part of a $5 million device-donations program created in response to the pandemic.
The company had previously integrated its platform into Amazon’s Alexa program, giving their customers access to a variety of social, educational and informational programs.
“Our enterprise solution allows us to deploy, manage and support these devices at scale and fully remote, meaning residents get the relief they need quickly and community staff teams are not burdened by installing or managing the technology,” Moody said.
Moody says the company’s goal during the pandemic is to use its technology to help fight isolation and loneliness for its customers – mostly older adults securely in the high-risk population being affected by the virus.
Earlier this year, the company expedited the release of its newest programming to encourage personal engagement with other users such as communicating and singing up for activities with each other.
Moody has previously stated the company is in conversations about how to incorporate telemedicine applications into the platform.