Early research on older adult computer users focused on the possibility for technology to increase social interaction and alleviate loneliness. Subsequent research has been equivocal on the possible benefits of the Internet for well-being. Nonetheless, in spite of an initial "gray gap," older adults are increasingly joining younger cohorts in using the Internet. Barriers to older adults' use of the Internet remain, such as physical and cognitive limitations. Attitudinal barriers may exist, but it is unclear whether these result from lack of experience or differences in income or health status. Business researchers have found that older persons differ from other age groups in their Internet engagement patterns, including online buying. Future research directions include whether computers can improve cognitive functioning and quality of life, how to increase engagement levels, and if there will always be a lag in technology use among older adults.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Sciences(all)