What Does It Mean To Be a Tech-Savvy Baby Boomer (2014)? Update: 2021

I was wondering what we were blogging about back when BoomerTECh Adventures was established.  I scrolled to our earliest blogs and found this 2014 piece written by BTA guide Ed Brazee. I thought it would be fun to update it to 2021. The original blog is in black text and the updates are in blue.  Feel free to add more ideas about what it means to be a tech-savvy Baby Boomer in 2021 in the comment section.

A couple looking at an iPad.

Do you use Google Drive? Instagram? Facebook?  TikTok? Whatsapp? Instagram?

Do you know how to record voice messages on your smartphone? Can you add special effects to your text messages?

Do you keep track of your exercise routine on your Apple Watch or its equivalent?

Can you make a short movie to send to your children or family?

Do you know how to spot scams and trolls on social media so you identify misinformation?

Do any of these matter to you? What do you use your technology for? Do you have a smartphone, computer, tablet, e-reader, FitBit, Apple Watch, or some other device? Many adults are put off by the constant changes, the new devices, and the sheer amount of new knowledge needed to stay current.

It’s important to recognize that the way businesses think about their use of the digital world has changed. A recent Forbes article reports, “As the digital maturity in companies evolves, there is a gradual shift in the way people think. They move from thinking “how can we use digital to sell more product”, to thinking “how can we use technology to reimagine the way we help deliver customer value?” It seems to be all about the digital experience, not just the new devices.  There are a lot of changes to take in, but don’t let that put you off.

There is no way any of us can “catch up,” “stay current,” or even “keep pace” with technology. The best we can do is find our own comfort zone where we have enough knowledge to use technology to accomplish the tasks we need to do.

However, it is probably prudent to remember that no matter how much we might wish for the digital world to slow down, it won’t. Keeping our skills at a static level actually means we’re moving backward. How many of us used telemedicine this past year to consult with a doctor?  We had to learn a new skill, Zooming, to accomplish that task. We also used Zoom to join book club meetings and celebrate holidays with family during the pandemic.  Our comfort level has needed to change over the past couple of years.

If you like to stay in touch with friends online, there are hundreds of ways to stay connected, Facebook included. Maybe email still works for you to communicate with others. Still, others prefer to use a video conferencing format like Skype, FaceTime, Zoom, or Google Meet. Plus Microsoft acquired Skype so procedures and passwords might have changed–another thing to keep up with.  

Here’s the key: You don’t need to know every last option nor be overwhelmed by the variety of choices. Find some apps that work for you and use them! Remember, however, devices and apps update all of the time.  One reason is to outsmart the hackers, and another is that the digital world is highly competitive so businesses are always trying to stay ahead of their rivals. A tech-savvy Baby Boomer makes sure to install these updates. (iPhone/iPad users currently have a major update: iOS 15) If we don’t, we may miss out on some security fixes, new features, and eventually, our devices just will not work as well.

Man using his phone.

Another thing the 2021 Baby Boomer needs to be savvy about is the way our internet behavior is tracked and sold. Read about this process in these articles:

Alternatively, you should also be open to new ideas and try to stay somewhat current with new applications or software that gives you more opportunities to do what you need to do. No doubt, communication, productivity, and creativity (The image at the left was created using the Perc0lator app on an iPad.) are three major reasons you use technology and those areas are changing every day.

Who knows how the digital world will change over the next several years, but change it will. The tech-savvy Baby Boomer will find ways to stay current. We here at BoomerTECH Adventures invite you to check in on our webpage regularly, subscribe to our YouTube channel, join BTA Club, and like us on Facebook. These strategies will help you stay current and safe in the digital world as well as find additional ways to make your life richer through technology. 

Jill Spencer

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