Understanding the Interest Toward Smart Home Technology: The Role of Utilitaristic Perspective
Every day, innovative devices support healthcare for the escalating needs of the population ageing but the poor adoption hinder their spread older adults. The present study aims to investigate the factors that may influence perceptions and expectations of 306 Italian older adults (M = 74, SD = 7.43) towards smart home and wellbeing technology. A questionnaire was verbally administered in face-to-face sessions by trained interviewers in order to collect data. Overall, the results return a positive picture of participants’ perception of the technology though attitude towards technology is definitely driven by utilitaristic means: usefulness, easiness, safety and privacy are considered important while aesthetics, size and weight are not. Around half of our respondents have a positive interest in technology and almost all of them believe that technology may eventually improve their life. According to these findings, the paper discusses some challenges for the whole research sector that appears still fragmentary and lacking of a strong body of evidence. Moreover, the promotion of trust and empowerment actions through instructional programs is highlighted.
KeywordsSmart home technology Active ageing Utilitaristic perspective
This work was supported by the Italian Ministry for University and Research through the project “Active Ageing@home”, within the National Technological Cluster (CTN01_00128_297061, TAV—Tecnologie per gli Ambienti di Vita) venture in the PON-2013-FESR framework.
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