11 September 2014

A Simpler Tablet?

AARP is touting a simple-to-use tablet:

AARP ANNOUNCES REALPAD
aarp-realtab-tablet-pc-android-seniors-senior-citizen… the nation’s largest advocate for 76 million baby boomers, today announced RealPad, a first of its kind tablet device built to address the specific needs of 70 million Americans 50+ who are yet to fully embrace tablet technology to help them stay connected.

I’m not sure there are 70 million people over fifty who are tech-shy – but there are a lot.

A moldy post:

23 October 2012
The Future Of Consumer Doodad Technology
… You should stop thinking about the next big thingamabob and whose will be best.  In five or ten years there will be all sorts of thingamabobs for just about everything.  You’ll have two or three or ten thingamabobs.  Tablets/Smartphones will be big, small, thin, simple, complex, active, passive, out the door in your purse or pocket, lost in your couch cushions.

So there may be a bit of room for AARP’s offering. 

The problem for me is the idea of a simplified tablet.  Tablets are already simple compared to smartphones, laptops, desktops.  

I use Windows, have a Windows phone. I’ve fiddled with Android and iPhones.  It took me awhile to grasp the software, hierarchies. 

But I’ve also fiddled with iPads and Android-based tablets. They’re a cinch to use.  Just pick one up and start poking and swiping.  No real learning curve.

We have an Android tablet. I can’t imagine anything simpler. I have a tougher time figuring out the garage door opener.

Check out the accessories page. All simple procedures for implementing extras/apps are pretty much the same as on standard tablets. Nothing special here. And if you know what memory, microUSB 2.0 ports, microSD drives and Bluetooth are – then you can’t be a complete tech idiot.  If you were a complete tech idiot, then this page would be gobbledygook, and probably scare the hell out of you.

No doubt RealPad is a good product. The specs look fine. The price is fine. I worry about what it doesn’t have that apparently makes it a simpler tablet.  I honestly can’t figure it out. If there are things missing, they’d better tell me.

Tablets are getting cheaper.  One major manufacturer will soon be offering a full-fledged Windows tablet for $120.00 – with almost the same specs as RealPad. 

Which would you buy?  Which would you recommend to someone who is tech-shy?

Perhaps RealPad should reposition as a very good inexpensive tablet with an easy-on-the-eyes interface (implied: for older eyes).  Not as a dumbed-down product for grizzled tech neophytes.


Dick Stroud’s musings on the subject (not much different than mine, in fact he may have a solid case for plagiarism):

Tablets for oldies - Breezie and now RealPad - all doomed to failure?



huffington_post_logo1Just for fun:
An Idle Mind Is the Devil's Playground
Here's a novel concept: Doing nothing is as productive, maybe more productive, as doing something.

18 August 2014

Those Advertising Surveys

In my ethereal quest for the best info on advertising and baby boomers (outside of this blog, of course), I often stumble upon surveys.

Everybody loves surveys.  People answer questions (they’re usually  honored by a request for their judgments) – then experts analyze, dissect, collate, comment. Lots of fun.

There are two brand-new ones about the effectiveness of advertising.  One is all about people a bit older than baby boomers, the other a generalized Q&A.

imageGolly gee. According to these surveys, advertising is in its death throes.

For almost ten years, I’ve been speaking/presenting about advertising and baby boomers. Two slides used since the beginning:

image

Then, with the magic of PP custom animation, I reveal a bit of possibly relevant info – the dates of these answers to surveys:

[image[42].png]

Most of the above statistics are from The Mirror Makers by Stephen Fox:

image

It’s official. The last sixty-seven years of advertising has been ‘ineffectual’.

11 August 2014

How America is Watching TV

Koeppel Direct has put up a juicy infographic about our TV watching habits.  It’s too big for this tiny blog, so here’s a link:

How America is Watching TV

I’ll grab a chunk of it:

image

Sounds like what I’ve been saying for years.  So have others:

01 November 2006
The steady glow of the Boom tube

15 February 2009
Television Still Shines

15 June 2010
Spending goes where the eyeballs are.

18 April 2011
The Flat-Screen Rectangle of Common Sense

23 July 2014

Leaked: P&G Reconsiders Incontinence

imageProcter & Gamble Co. plotting expansion of its Always brand that would include adult diapers
By Dan Monk
“Procter & Gamble is very serious about this category and they’re going to spend whatever it takes to be successful..”

It wasn’t long before major media outfits soaked it up:

imageP&G Poised to Re-Enter the Unsexiest of Boom Markets -- Adult Incontinence
More Than a Decade After Leaving Category, P&G Lured Back by Aging Boomers
By Jack Neff

P&G Turns to Adult Diapers
By Serena Ng
… While most infants and toddlers wear diapers for two to three years, incontinence suffers typically have to buy products for much longer, as the problem seldom goes away.

So Kimberly-Clark will have some soggy competition.

… The new P&G products may be rolled out under its Always feminine-care brand, suggesting the company will target mainly women, who make up the majority of incontinence sufferers.

Men. I wouldn’t ignore this market.

Through the years I’ve sprinkled posts about incontinence campaigns:

16 September 2009
Boomer Backlash II

08 August 2012
The Ones That Got Away: Underwear

Along with a short presentation:

Or click here for the bigger but fuzzier screen version.

I wonder if P&G will do better.

09 July 2014

Miscellany: Sex, Travel, Tech

It’s too hot to concentrate.  I’ll be going every which way with this post, trying to stay cool by moving around.

I wrote a piece about sex for HuffPo.  Doesn’t everybody who blogs for HuffPo do that?  Your hits go way up – not like if you write about chickens.

huffington_post_logo1Going Nutty Over Older Women's Bodies
I thank my lucky stars I've lived long enough to go nutty over older women's bodies. It's not anything I ever thought I'd go nutty over…

ewald_pattiTampa Bay Times Staff Writer Patti Ewald recently wrote a funny, trenchant column about sex – and referenced my piece:

Still turned on to idea of sex
"There's this popular public perception that as women age, sex becomes unimportant and that women just stop having sex as they get older," said Holly Thomas, a University of Pittsburgh researcher. "From our study, it looks like most women continue to have sex."

At the moment, the article above says I’m seventy-four.  I asked them to change it to my correct age (sixty-three).  However, you’re only as old as you feel – so maybe they got it right…

imageAARP talks travel:

  • AARP Online Travel Study
    Eight out of 10 persons age 50 or older use websites to plan as well as book their non-business travel.
  • Currently those 50 and older use, on average, 4 websites to plan and 3 websites to book their non-business related travel.  Almost a quarter would prefer to use fewer websites to plan or book non-business travel.

Golly gee, did we need to do a fancy-shmancy research study for this info?  I could’ve told you the same things.  In fact, I did.  Over a decade ago:

image

From my book Advertising to Baby Boomers ©2005, 2007:

Pouncing Mouses

      Many sociologists and futurists are predicting a few more radical social and political upheavals triggered by Baby Boomers  before we’re packed off in coffins and urns, sprinkled over mystical mountains and mundane golf courses, or blasted into outer space so we can eternally commune with the cosmos.

advbbcoverOn the other end of the spectrum, we’ll also be revolutionizing the tourist industry for the next thirty years, taking hundreds of millions more vacations before the ultimate holiday. Travel companies are having big problems trying to figure out what to offer—and how to reach us. We’re not lining up on docks for meaningless cruises on silly ships, nor are we allowing ourselves to be bundled into cookie- cutter cavalcades so we can gawk at decaying castles from the lumpy seats of double-decker buses. Nobody is going to tell us what a vacation is. We’ll tell you.

There’s a cottage industry out there preying on the blubbery and frightened tourist industry, making wild guesses as to what Baby Boomers will want to do with all our free time. I won’t list them all here. They range from ecologically correct junkets to health-nut boot camps to intellectually and culturally themed excursions to the beating down of well-publicized, well-traveled “unbeaten paths.”

This book deals with advertising to Baby Boomers, but I’ll over- step my bounds and propose a business model: Boomers are internet- savvy. Boomers are not passive. We do not want to simply slap one key and have our vacation pop up on a screen. We want to rattle lots of keys, have our mouses pounce and bite off appetizing chunks of graphic and description from all sorts of sources––and build unique, variegated vacations.

Some smart dot-com entrepreneur will partner with thousands of travel companies, resorts, hotels, museums, airlines, car rental companies, and build a modular travel and reservation website. Myriad tempting experiences will be offered. The website will calculate the price of each activity, cataloguing and coordinating everything. It will be a package you fill with goodies.

Planning it will be half the fun, and immediately entice and involve the site visitor. For a few days you’ll be lying on a beach. The next day you’ll travel to a large city and take in whatever sights you wish, perhaps joining a guided tour. In the morning you’ll be driving to a tennis resort for a day or two. After that will come a scenic road trip to a local winery for a prearranged private tour. Keep driving, and you’ll check into a secluded lodge, and hike in the mountains for a few days. Then you’re off visiting another city in another country, mostly to just goof around. Finally, check in your car, hop on a train, and before long you’re naked and slumping into a vat of hot mud at a famous health spa, followed by a shower and reservations at a five- star restaurant.

You could even spend an afternoon in lumpy seats on a double- decker bus if you want.

4 November 2005
My Favorite Cyber-Myth
Hitwise found that visitors to the top travel search engines were by far likely to be over 55 years of age. Hitwise attributed this to baby boomers …

Enough about travel.  I got carried away. 

Last up is tech.  Just for fun, here’s a link to my latest HuffPo piece:

I Am a Digital Dinosaur
2014-07-02-dino.gifFor years, I've been hearing about how old I am based on what I remember. Phonographs, rotary phones, white-out, carbon paper, air-raid drills, fizzies -- the items are endless.

Now there's a new way to categorize absolute oldness: Being a Digital Dinosaur…