Social media and smartphone apps are making it easier to connect with friends and family, stay healthy—and even find a second career.


From how we shop to how we find romance, technology has revolutionized the way we live. The Wall Street Journal recently looked at how retirees in particular can benefit from the latest innovations (“How Technology Will Transform Retirement,” November 2015). For example, tomorrow’s retirees will be able to invest in kitchen appliances that keep track of their diet and share that vital information with their doctors. Constant monitoring may sound a little intrusive—a violation of privacy, even—but the gains brought about by these new technologies often outweigh the losses. Consider these other innovations:


  • Telecommuting may allow you to keep working while maintaining a retiree lifestyle. On-demand services are another way to add to your retirement income, perhaps renting out your spare room on Airbnb, using your car as an Uber taxi or becoming a personal shopper via Instacart. Prefer a more regular part-time job? The internet is a great place to brush up on work and interview skills.
  • Socializing with faraway friends via Skype or FaceTime is already the norm. Picture a future where an entire wall of your home projects images of those friends, now virtually alongside you, sharing coffee and gossip. As older people flock online in greater numbers, specialized sites are springing up, such as Connected Living, which helps people in senior housing connect with each other.
  • Tracking health is made easy by smartphones that monitor heart rate and exercise regimes. Next we’ll be wearing “smart clothes:” These hi-tech garments of tomorrow will have sensors woven into their very fabrics, keeping an eye on your activity levels and alerting your doctor when necessary.


Technology has also improved the way we plan for retirement. As well as meeting with a professional advisor, you can go online to take advantage of web-based tools, such as retirement calculators, or benefit from online educational seminars. Want to know if you’re saving enough for the kind of retirement you want? TIAA offers a free online Retirement Advisor , which asks a few simple questions before generating a customized Retirement Action Plan. If you’re ten years or less from retirement, you can benefit from our Retirement Income Planner. By creating hypothetical scenarios, this easy-to-use tool explores your income options and how to help maximize your income payouts in retirement. Our website has many other popular tools and calculators to help you navigate the path to and through retirement. Whether you’re deciding which IRA is right for you, how to maximize your tax-deferred retirement savings or how to create a budget, our online advice and guidance uses the latest technology to give you the personalized information you need.