New AARP survey suggests that Older Adults Keep Pace on Tech Usage but concern over privacy noted as barrier to broader adoption

A new AARP national survey finds that older Americans are increasingly drawn to new technology, but they often do not take full advantage of their devices, and they are concerned about privacy issues online.


Key insights from the survey


Tech ownership among older adults is growing with no signs of slowing down.

• For many devices, adoption among adults ages 50 and older is comparable to younger generations. Adults ages 50 and older are adopting smartphones, wearables, home assistants/smart speakers, and smart home technology at nearly the same rate as adults ages 18–49.

• Once adopted, usage of smartphones, wearables, tablets, home assistants/smart speakers, and smart home technology is high with most owners using their technology daily.


Secure home technology is an emerging market, but concerns of privacy need to be addressed.

• Adults 50 and older are interested in smart home safety technology and devices that provide convenience, safety, and peace of mind.

• They also have a significant interest in home security technology, specifically door cameras (59%), sensors that monitor doors and windows (48%), and appliances (42%).

• However, just 14% are extremely/very confident that what they do online is private. Among home assistant device owners, just 11% are confident their information is private on the device.


Demand for health and wellness technology to enhance provider care is increasing among older adults.

• With 76% of adults age 50 and older indicating a desire to age in place,1 voice-activated tool such as home assistants and home health care technology (emergency or virtual care) are relevant potential purchases for them.

• If offered a choice, over half (53%) would prefer to have their health care needs managed by a mix of medical professionals and health care technology.


For more information about the survey methodology and findings, read the full report HERE