New technology makes it easier for retirees to stay healthy, reach out to loved ones and manage their finances.

58% of people aged 65 and older now use the Internet, according to the recent Time article “5 Must-Have Tech Tools and Apps for Retirees” (June 2016). Not surprisingly, their number one reason for going online is to connect with friends and family.

The worldwide web is not only transforming the social lives of retirees, it is improving their lives in other important ways, including:

  • Health. Americans between the ages of 65 and 79 get through 27 prescriptions per year, on average. Why keep track of so many meds (and risk missing doses) when there’s a smartphone/tablet application to manage it all for you? Medisafe reminds you when it’s time to take a pill and can even alert a family member if you miss a dose.
  • Security. Seniors can be particularly vulnerable to online scams and telemarketers. To help safeguard an elderly relative, you may consider signing him or her up to True Link Financial’s customizable debit card for seniors, which allows you to confine spending to certain stores, among other features. Services like Nomorobo, meanwhile, blocks calls from telemarketers who may target retirees.
  • Independence. Amazon Echo is a voice-activated device designed for seniors who struggle to get around but would like to remain independent at home. Among its many functions are answering questions and reading audiobooks.

USA Today also recommended a few useful apps for retirees in their article, “Golden apps that can help you in retirement.” Some of the highlights:

  • Grocery iQ.. Like many of the best apps, it’s free to install.
  • Luminosity.
  • MyFitnessPal.

Nowadays, a smartphone and Internet connection are really all you need to stay close to loved ones in retirement. They can also help to improve your health, finances and sense of independence.