Large fonts and large icons make it easier for the elderly to accept "less choices" and "unusable" problems still exist

  How to optimize the "elderly model" to make it easier to use

  □ Our reporter Han Dandong

  □ Intern Wang Yitian

  Uncle Li, who was nearly seventy years old, had a hard time buying a new smart phone recently: the new phone can be set to "elderly mode", the font size on the screen has become larger, it seems that the eyes are a lot easier, but the screen A lot of apps made him at a loss, which ones he would use, and what pitfalls might be hidden in those apps that he wanted to use?

  In the face of smart phones, there are still many elderly people who are as confused as Uncle Li.

According to the 48th "Statistical Report on Internet Development in China", the number of middle-aged and elderly Internet users has grown the fastest. As of June this year, Internet users aged 50 and above accounted for 28%.

  In order to effectively solve the problem of Internet "suitability for aging", the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has issued relevant notices many times, requiring that the difficulties of the elderly in using smart technologies be effectively resolved, and the elderly can use smart products and services to help middle-aged and elderly netizens integrate into Internet life and share Internet dividends create convenient conditions.

  Under the guidance of the policy, many mobile phone manufacturers and apps have launched the "elderly model" one after another.

How effective is the actual use of this model, and can it meet the needs of the elderly?

With these questions in mind, a reporter from the Rule of Law Daily conducted an investigation and interview.

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  Loved by the elderly

  Uncle Sun, who lives in Shanghai, has been using the elderly machine for five or six years. He just had a grandson last year. The old man was very happy and always clamored about going to visit his grandson in other places, but he was inconvenient to travel due to the epidemic.

How to do?

His daughter thought of a way for him to make video calls twice a week.

  In order to see his grandson, Uncle Sun abandoned the old man's phone without video function and went to a mobile phone store to buy a smart phone.

"Look, sir, I set up the care mode for you, and now the font size on the screen is a lot bigger, can you see it clearly?" The salesperson intimately helped him set the phone to the "care mode" and told him which software In which folder.

  The so-called "care mode" refers to the "elderly mode" introduced by mobile phone manufacturers, also known as "simple mode". After the mobile phone turns on this mode, it will automatically optimize and adapt to the needs of the elderly.

For example, the interface on the mobile phone screen will be more concise; App search will be more direct.

  In June of this year, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology issued three standards: "Technical Requirements for Aging Suitable for Mobile Terminals", "Testing Methods for Suitable Aging for Mobile Terminals" and "Technical Requirements for Designing Suitable Aging for Smart TVs", focusing on the use of mobile phones and tablets by the elderly. Various difficulties encountered in the process of smart terminal products.

For example, large fonts, large icons, and high-contrast text that make it easier for the elderly with impaired vision to view, and audio control systems that make it easy for the elderly with hearing loss to use.

  Uncle Sun found out after using his smart phone for a period of time in the "ageing mode", "This phone is very smart. I have read several drama articles, and I often push relevant content to me."

  The reporter recently interviewed a number of elderly people randomly in Tianjin, Shanghai, and Jiangsu. They all reported that most of the old people’s phones in the past could only be used to answer calls, but now they have the needs of video calls and short video browsing, and smart phones can be set to "elderly "Human mode" can not only meet their needs for using intelligent products, but also make them "not too tired to accept it."

  "In the'elderly mode', the font size and icons have become larger, and the interface is simple and easy for the elderly to find, and it is more convenient to uninstall and add applications. The content pushed is generally what the elderly love to watch." Uncle Sun praised.

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  Cannot recognize dialect

  However, although the "elderly model" has brought a lot of convenience to the elderly group, some elderly people still encounter many difficulties in the process of using it.

  Uncle Li clearly remembered that when he was buying a mobile phone, the salesperson told him that "you can speak to wake up the smart voice. Just find any software to talk to the phone directly."

But this function has now become a blocking point in Uncle Li's mind: He likes to try new things and often tries to use the voice function, but he has almost never succeeded.

  "Later the salesperson told me that because I was not speaking standard Mandarin, the smart phone couldn't recognize it and the voice function could not be turned on." Uncle Li felt angry and funny, "Is the smart phone so unsmart?"

  In addition, Uncle Li found that there are too many unnecessary apps bundled on mobile phones. These apps publish various reminders in the notification bar every day. "The notification bar is full, and it is often difficult to tell which ones are really useful. Information".

  Also worrying about the bunch of apps on the phone screen is Aunt Li, who lives in Suzhou, Jiangsu.

Not long ago, my daughter bought her a smart phone and set it to "elderly mode". Before she was happy for a few days, she ran into a problem—I don’t know how to use this app, and what that app does. , It is very inconvenient to use.

  "The children said they wanted to make a video call with me, and then they bought a new mobile phone. As a result, the little red dots on the screen (App unread messages) were all over, and I didn't know what it was doing." Aunt Li said.

  The reporter turned on the "elderly mode" in different mobile phones to experience and found that some mobile phones just sort the apps according to the first letter of the pinyin, and the interface is messy; in the item of making a call, some mobile phone manufacturers do not have a fast dial option, nor can they Enter numbers through the dialing interface for quick retrieval; during the smart voice process, some mobile phones cannot open the health code, some mobile phones cannot call the phone number; and some spam or advertising information cannot be blocked in time.

  Uncle Li mentioned the problem of intelligent speech recognition. During the interview, some experts also pointed out that from the current design of the smartphone itself, intelligent speech does not perform well in the recognition of dialects, and many elderly people cannot use Mandarin well. , The input deviation of the above language is a problem that various mobile phone manufacturers have not been able to solve.

  In addition to smartphones, how does the App’s "elderly model" perform?

  The reporter downloaded an app that is currently used by the elderly and turned on its "older mode" and found that although some apps have larger fonts and a simpler interface, they have not withstood the "money temptation". The apps are still full of tasks. It’s easy for the elderly to click to enter or download ads accidentally.

  Combining the needs of the elderly

  Optimize "adaptation to aging"

  In fact, in order to solve the difficulties encountered by the elderly and other special groups in using intelligent technologies such as the Internet, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology will carry out a one-year "Special Action for Internet Application Ageing and Accessibility Improvement" from January 2021. .

  In order to actively respond to national policies, some apps have explored.

For example, some short video platforms are mainly optimized for “aging” in terms of product design, content construction, and user services, and give priority to solving the problem that elderly users can’t see clearly and don’t use them. At the same time, they upgrade time reminder and management functions to help elderly users. Carry out time management; in terms of content security, strengthen the review standards for old-related content, raise the level of potential risk private message warning response levels, severely crack down on illegal advertisements, and strive to create a safe content environment for elderly users; some platforms start with convenience, in addition to In addition to the larger font size, the contrast between the color of the text and the icon and the background brightness has been increased, and the click response area of ​​the connection between the button and the text has been increased...

  Previously, the relevant person in charge of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology introduced that to help the elderly to better use smart technologies and applications, the key is to solve the problem of "not easy to use", "less choices" and "unusable" in Internet applications.

  The experts interviewed by the reporter also agreed that the application of App's "aging-appropriate" optimization can not only improve the visual effects of the elderly, but also prescribe the right medicine based on the actual needs of the elderly.

  Zheng Ning, director of the Law Department of the School of Cultural Industry Management of Communication University of China, suggested: First, the government, Internet companies, and communities should educate and train the elderly on how to use smart devices safely and quickly; secondly, under the guidance of the government , The major platforms jointly establish an interconnected ecological network of the "elderly model" to facilitate the lives of the elderly; thirdly, enterprises should earnestly fulfill their platform responsibilities and continuously improve the "elderly model" to adapt to the physical and mental characteristics of the elderly.

  "The'elderly model' should not only focus on the model itself, but should also pay attention to its content, operation mode, programming code, etc. The'elderly model' does not mean to eliminate all advertisements, but to have services that are beneficial to the elderly. , And make some improvements and enhancements in its functions." said Wang Sixin, a professor at Communication University of China.