• Wearable devices can improve the lives of older people by monitoring their health

The Open University has launched a year-long study into whether wearable devices can improve the lives of older people by monitoring their health.

The research will focus on how accessible wearable technology for people aged 55 and over, and whether they find wearables appealing.

Shailey Minocha, professor of learning technologies and social computing, said: "We want to try and understand what benefits these mobile devices may bring in terms of helping older people to monitor their health, maintain their mobility, even improve their social interactions."

The study comes in the wake of NHS research into digital health innovation, including a report last year which recommended increasing the number of digital devices used within the service. Professor Minocha added: "The technology is developing so fast, more and more people will be monitoring their health themselves and will be sending data to professionals based elsewhere."

The Open University study will build on previous research it has conducted into the problems that come along with aging. It aims to find digital solutions for the health issues older people face, not only commenting on currently available wearables, but advising the industry on which areas should be developed next.