According to the Pew Research Institute 27% of adults over the retirement age of 65 now own a smart phone. Over 80% feel it is a “freeing” experience. Seniors still tend to only use their smart phones for a limited range of purposes. Those who choose to broaden their horizons find a world of practicality, fascination and entertainment. Here are six smart phone apps to introduce this multifaceted world.

  1. Weather App – Many weather apps are available. The most popular are Weather Channel, 1Weather and Weather Underground. Seniors loving to travel will appreciate this type of app. They show current weather as well as forecasts for several days and weeks. The visuals easily show what to expect in coming hours and days. 1Weather supplies graphics indicating the range of temperature for the current date. The amount of precipitation due within the next seven days is also available. Most weather apps give you the same detailed information but display it in different ways.The weather app is useful for home and the perfect app to have when traveling. Know ahead of time what to bring to be comfortable no matter the temperature. Having a “heads up” on the weather makes a noticeable difference when making your plans.


  1. Brain Games – The use-it-or-lose-it saying applies primarily to physical fitness. Keeping your mind active should also be a part of your health plan to help offset memory issues. Playing card games and completing jigsaw puzzles are excellent activities. When on the road or looking for something new download one of the brain game apps. The exercises seem more like fun than challenges. Your memory, reasoning and perception are enhanced in less than 20 minutes a day with regular use.Luminosity is a popular app for brain training. NeuroNation is another app to make exercising your brain fun. These apps allow you to play on your own, with friends and to compare your progress with others if you enjoy competition. Motivation is built into the exercises.


  1. Magnifying Glasses and Light – Most of us wonder why the print on medication is so tiny. Even people with excellent eyesight have a difficult time reading the small print. With a magnifying application on the camera of your smart phone the smaller display is magnified. Many of these apps come with an attached light to illuminate the text. The ability to zoom in and out helps easily find the right magnification to make reading a breeze. No more squinting or hunting for the magnifying glass. It’s right there as long as you have your phone.


  1. Medication Reminders – Are you taking a variety of pills? Does it become more difficult to remember which ones you took or when? Several medication reminder apps are available. Pillboxie is a very popular choice with iPhone users. It keeps track of medications, what they look like, when to take them and has a place to record any reactions after taking a medication. Documentation is valuable information when starting or switching to a new drug. Medisafe Medication Reminder is a highly recommended app. Medication reminders and alerts for prescription refills are given by Medisafe Medication Reminder. The app is available for both iPhone and Androids.


  1. Car Locator Apps – Parking in a mall parking lot and forgetting where the car is parked is both frustrating and frightening. It is especially so when renting a car or using a loaner vehicle. A car locater app such as Car Locator (Android) or Park’n’Forget (iPhone) prevents panic and high blood pressure when you forget where the car is parked. Special features make parking anywhere simple. Park’n’Forget has a timer for the parking meter and sends an alert before meter time expires. Trip Buddy is another app using GPS to pinpoint and lead you directly to your automobile.


  1. Personalized Radio – Your favorite tunes may come from the 60’s or 70’s or perhaps you prefer classical or smooth jazz. No matter your preferences, a radio app helps create stations playing favorite genres. Pandora and Spotify happen to be two of the most prevalent apps.  Enjoy music you want to hear when you want to hear it.


Open a whole new world of fun and possibilities when you visit the app store associated with your phone – Apple Apps (iPhone) or Google Play (Android). Browse the vast selection of available apps. You are sure to find many fitting your needs. A number of the popular apps are free. If pop up ads bother you, ad- free apps are available for purchase. Enjoy the innovative Digital Age with your new phone!