Getting the internet to work for you can help make life easier, helping you stay in touch, explore your passions and even simplify and speed up daily tasks. Age Scotland helped EE organise two EE Techy Tea Party events in Glasgow and Edinburgh this year where more than 30 older people came to find out more about technology.
The aim of an EE Techy Tea Party is for volunteers from the digital communications company EE to spend around two hours with local people from their community. Guests bring the kit they want to learn more about and EE’s digital champions bring their know how to help them gain the skills to make the most of the technology at their fingertips.
Last year the company held 70 EE Techy Tea Parties across the UK, with 565 digital champions helping to improve the digital skills of nearly 1000 people. An impressive 89 per cent of guests told them they were more likely to use technology in the future.
Age Scotland guests at the events in Glasgow and Edinburgh were brimming with questions about texting, e mail set up, shopping on line, downloading apps and social media.
Catriona Blythe who attended the Glasgow Techy Tea Party said: “I’m looking forward to being be able to use Facebook through my phone more to speak to my son who is abroad.”
Here, Madeleine Knowles from EE shares some tips:
- Stay in touch
Everyone leads such busy lives, so it can be difficult to keep in touch with those you care about.
Email (electronic mail)
Set up your own email account for free at Google mail www.gmail.com or try Hotmail at www.hotmail.co.uk. You can even set up email accounts on your smartphone, so you can retrieve e mails on the move.
Set up a Facebook account so you can see what your friends and family are up to. www.facebook.com or install the Twitter app on your smartphone to ‘check in’ when you are out and about.
Save money and time
There are lots of shopping sites on line, google the ones you like ad grab yourself a bargain. Visit www.amazon.co.uk they have everything from good books, to bedding, or make your first sale on www.ebay.co.uk .
Last minute holiday and entertainment deals can been seen at www.lastminute.com or try www.groupon.com . The Vouchercloud app sees where you are and searches out great local high street deals for you.
Compare prices on a whole range of things including insurance, travel, mobile phones and broadband at www.moneysupermarket.com.
Sort out your travel and check train times at www.nationalrail.co.uk or get discounts when you book online at www.thetrainline.com
Get out and about fuss free with the Google maps app on your smartphone or try the next bus app to find out bus times in your area.
Do you have a favourite song that brings back memories or a TV show that you hate to miss? Watch great BBC shows on www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer
Go to www.google.com and type in what you are interested in eg football or try www.bbc.co.uk/sport for the latest news on your team. Find chat rooms full of likeminded people why not try www.sagazone.co.uk/forums
The internet allows you to access information and news as it breaks. Check out today’s news on www.bbc.co.uk/news .
Read books on line www.isubscribe.co.uk to see magazines that you can download. Or download an audiobook www.audible.co.uk or www.waterstones.com to feast your eyes on the latest novel or old classics.
Technology has revolutionised our lives and there are things you can do to stay safe:
- Trust your common sense: if you are not sure, don’t risk it
- Use anti-virus software and keep it up to date (usually annually)to stop rogue messaging and links affecting your computer
- Shopping online? Check for the padlock sign. (This means the site is secure.)
- Never respond to emails from people you don’t know. You won’t have won money from a competition you didn’t enter and a foreign prince won’t really be desperate to share his millions with you
- Don’t write passwords down and don’t share them with others
- Use different passwords for different online accounts
- Your bank will never ask you for password information: an email that seems to be from your bank, yet asks to confirm your personal details will be fake
- Always log out if you are using a public computer or others will see your information
- If there might be children using your computer you can set up parental controls if children to stop them accessing content such as pornography, gambling and dating, that’s meant for adults
- If you’re unsure – ask a friend about reputable websites
Sharing information about yourself
We all have a digital shadow, so remember everything you do can leave a trace, use trusted websites, act responsibly and treat others with respect
For more information take a look at www.explore.ee.co.uk/digital-living or visit www.getsafeonline.org.uk
EE will be hosting ‘EE National Techy Tea Party Day’ on Tuesday 9 September in all of its stores to further tackle digital exclusion across the UK. Visit www.ee.co.uk/ttpday to find out more.
Find out more about getting online on our website.
Age Scotland’s sister charity, Age UK, produces an Internet Security guide which can be accessed online from the Age UK website at www.ageuk.org.uk or call Silver Line Scotland on 0800 4 70 80 90 to request a copy.