Smart Homes must enable ageless living

A recent article from Accenture reminds us that the ‘smart home’ is expected to add $14 trillion in economic value to the global economy by 2030.

It will provide a myriad Internet of Things services and consumer and enterprise applications. This is potentially a huge opportunity. The Accenture report claims that for  Communications Service Providers alone, it could bring a whopping $100 billion in profits to the industry by 2025.

So my question is whether developers of these so-called ‘Smart Homes’ are considering the needs of ALL potential users in their designs? Specifically, the older home dwellers whose bodies, minds and senses are beginning to deteriorate.

Nowadays, most people prefer to ‘age in place’. They want to grow older amongst their friends and family and in familiar neighborhoods.

Homes that have been designed to accomodate the needs of older folks (I’m talking 60+ not just the very old) are commanding premiums on the US housing market, and no doubt so elsewhere.

What factors must be considered when building and selecting an age-friendly living environment and how are they measured? What are the touchpoints that home designers and builders must address when they are creating homes for older customers?

Designers need to consider each and all of the 25 Effects of Aging to ensure that Smart Homes enable ageless living and do not create barriers for older people.