Being able to use a computer and the internet can open up lots of opportunities for you. You can:
- handle day-to-day correspondence through email, video calling or using speech-to-text software, which can be useful if you have problems writing by hand
- keep in touch with your friends and family, and share experiences with other people affected by Parkinson’s through online communities and social media.
A smartphone is a mobile phone that can do many of the same things a computer does, such as access the internet and emails.
Tablets are very slim, lightweight computers. Many people with Parkinson’s tell us that tablets, such as the Apple iPad, are easier to use than desktop or laptop computers because they have touchscreens, rather than a keyboard and mouse.
'Wearable tech', such as smartwatches, can access the internet and track things like your health data or sleep patterns.
Smartphones, tablets and other devices come with apps, which are pieces of software that can be used to perform a variety of tasks you may find useful.
Most smartphones and tablets either have built-in features to enable voice control, or you can install an app to do the same job. You can use voice activation to help you:
- call someone in your phonebook just by saying their name
- search the internet
- dictate text messages and emails
- open apps
- record notes as reminders or to send as messages
Global Positioning System (GPS) trackers
GPS trackers allow a nominated person, such as a partner, family member or carer, to see on a map where you are (as long as you are carrying your smartphone or tablet and are not in a signal black spot).
Video calling means you can see and hear the person you are talking to during a call.
Medication managers remind you when your medication is due. They may also let you store medical information, for example care plans or details of local healthcare professionals.
If you're a developer of an app or device and need support with the development, testing, demonstrating or sale of devices and apps you can get in touch with our devices and apps groups by emailing [email protected].
Contacting local groups
It's the responsibility of the developer to make sure that they comply with the required ethical and governance standards. No direct marketing of products should go through local groups without consulting our devices and apps group.
Our local groups shouldn't be contacted directly by companies or product developers at the development stage.
If you're a part of a local group and have received a query from a developer of an app or device, please get in touch with us. If Parkinson's UK is unable to support the developer, individual members of your local groups can decide whether to be involved, for example in usability testing.
For any other queries, please get in touch with the devices and apps group.
Other speech and communication support
Last updated October 2020. We review all our information within 3 years. If you'd like to find out more about how we put our information together, including references and the sources of evidence we use, please contact us at [email protected]