Bridging the tech gap to connect with aging loved ones 



Generation Gap + Technology Gap = Communication Gap

Contemporary technologies often exclude the generations that did not grow up in a world of screens, while younger generations are increasingly reliant on the same technologies that are isolating older generations. Meanwhile, we live in a culture where grandparents often live faraway from their grandchildren.  



Grammaphone bridges the technology gap by applying contemporary UX principles to an older demographic as a means of increase the desired communication between family members. Grammaphone is a tablet case and app/website pairing that reduce the clutter and confusion of tablet functions down to the most essential and desired components for grandparents, while enhancing the tactile experience for the less dextrous and hearing impaired.



UX Design, Product Design



Arjun Kalyanpur and David Al-Ibrahim



Tomorrow Lab



7 weeks (2016)




hand-me-up technology

While younger generations are digital natives, understanding the complex user flows of modern technologies can be a challenge for older individuals, especially when the designs require finger dexterity or have smaller text sizing that is not as friendly to older users. Grammaphone is a two part system consisting of an iPad case and digital platform that reduces the complexity and potential clutter of iPad functions into a simple device for keeping in contact with their younger loved ones.


Research and interviews


if you feel left out now...

According to the Pew Research Center, 79% of older adult internet users think people without internet access are missing out, yet 82% of of seniors 65+ say they would feel uncomfortable learning to use a new technology device - such as a smartphone or tablet - on their own. Research also suggests single people over the age of 70 suffer from loneliness, as they are physically and digitally isolated from their younger loved ones.

In addition to our research findings, residents of the Fairfax Assisted Living & Retirement Residence shared some of their experiences with us:




"Grandkids are busy being young and getting in trouble. I don't want to be a bother." 

Based on interviews with grandparents and younger generations, we developed personas of a grandmother and her granddaughter to to illustrate the pain points in their relationship.


product details


bringing back buttons

The Grammaphone is a tablet case and website/downloadable app that can be used with repurposed tablets to seamlessly connect generations. The Grammaphone has an interface designed specifically for the elderly in mind. The Grammaphone simplifies the interactions of the touch interface, while incorporating physical keypad for tactility and ease of use. Children and grandchildren can signal when they are available to chat, send video messages, as well as photos.