Who says technology is only for those under 65 years old? According to the Pew Research Center, 61 percent of U.S. seniors 65 and older own a smartphone. And according to World Economic Forum, 67 percent of U.S. seniors 65 and older use the internet.
Today’s older adults are embracing the tech age and becoming more and more tech-savvy, especially during the pandemic where there was less face-to-face interaction. Every day, seniors use technology and the internet in their daily routines for things like scheduling appointments and grocery shopping. Technology connects seniors with their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren through social media apps and video calling.
In addition to these practical and social benefits, seniors know their smartphones and the internet are a gateway to all kinds of entertainment! Not only does playing online games help pass the time, but you can also learn a thing or two.
Below is a list of our top five genres of online games and smartphone apps for older adults to enjoy.
Top five video games and apps for seniors
- Words with Friends (Free on Google Play and Apple): Much like its name, players take turns creating words in a crossword puzzle, similar to Scrabble.
- Wordscapes (Free on Google Play and Apple): You are given six letters and are tasked to create as many words as you can with those letters.
- New York Times Crossword (Free on Google Play and Apple): New crosswords are posted daily!
- Candy Crush Saga (Free on Google Play and Apple): A puzzle-style game with many levels of play.
- Tetris (Free on Google Play and Apple): Mix and match horizontal blocks before time runs out.
- Angry Birds (Free on Google Play and Apple): Aim and shoot at different targets to gather as many points as you can.
- Duolingo (Free on Google Play and Apple): Learn a new language with quick and easy lessons.
- Trivia Crack (Free on Google Play and Apple): Put your trivia knowledge to the test in a variety of categories.
- Elevate (Free on Google Play and Apple): Brain games designed to improve your reading, writing, math, memory and writing skills.
Virutal card games
Play these classic games whenever and wherever!
- Solitaire (Free on Google Play and Apple)
- Bridge (Free on Google Play and Apple)
- UNO (Free on Google Play and Apple)
- Wii: Recommended games for seniors include Wii Sports, Mario Kart and Just Dance.
- Virtual Reality: Explore the world around you like you are truly there.
- Twitch: Interact or watch with other users while playing games, trivia or presentations.
How one of our communities used Twitch
Twitch is an online streaming platform that gamers use to connect with others around the world. It can be used to stream games and live shows that anyone can join, view and participate in. To help keep residents engaged during the COVID-19 pandemic, activity director Jen Fackler of The Waterford at Levis Commons decided to use her gaming knowledge to stream bingo games for the residents.
“I was so excited that we made this work,” Fackler said. “I stream [on Twitch] while I paint and do crafts, so this was a service I was familiar with.”
When Fackler wanted to bring the experience to The Waterford, her husband helped set up a channel to stream on the residents’ TVs. “I got the phone guy to hook our community channel to the internet so I could broadcast anything from the internet.”
While in quarantine, it can be challenging to keep residents engaged in fun activities. With Twitch, Fackler was able to bring the fun directly to each residents’ room virtually! All the residents had to do was tune to the channel and have their cards and a pen or marker. “If they got a bingo, they just put their name on it and put it in their mailbox. We traded winning cards for candy bars. We also had nurse aides roaming the halls and helping if needed,” Fackler explained.
“The residents thought this was the coolest thing ever! I had people playing bingo in their apartments that would never come to play in person. Being in quarantine is horrible, but my residents told me that it was so good to see me and my shenanigans in their living rooms.”
Fackler wants to continue offering online activities for her residents, and eventually introduce more technology opportunities to The Waterford. She will be broadcasting trivia on October 4, 2021. To view the channel, click here.
Schedule a tour
If you’re a senior or caregiver looking for independent living, assisted living or memory care services for you or your loved one, contact us to schedule a tour or request more information about a community near you.
Musicians, Magicians and Pyro Technicians: Summer Fun at Our Communities
Our community leadership teams curate unique programming and experiences to keep seniors engaged and entertained.
Find a community
If you’re a senior or caregiver looking for independent living, assisted living or memory care services for you or your loved one, contact us to schedule a tour or request information about a community near you.