J Korean Geriatr Psychiatry.  2018 Oct;22(2):47-54. 10.0000/jkgp.2018.22.2.47.

Usage Status and Characteristics of Mobile Devices for the Geriatric Population

  • 1Department of Psychiatry and Institute of Behavioral Science in Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. empathy@yuhs.ac
  • 2Department of Psychiatry, Gangnam Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Yonsei University Health System, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Department of Psychiatry, National Health Insurance Service Ilsan Hospital, Goyang, Korea.
  • 4Department of Psychiatry, Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


This study aims to investigate the current usage status and identify the needs of mobile devices in the geriatric population, thus grasping the accessibility and possibility of mobile devices which can be positively used to allow them to obtain health information and manage their mental health.
All self-reported questionnaires, such as demographics, mobile phone usage, and several mental health-related scales, were completed by two elderly groups (14 males ; aged over 60, mean=73) who visited Seodaemun-gu center for dementia: 1) 54 feature phone and 2) 57 smartphone users.
The results revealed that they have had the need to receive health information and healthcare particularly on psychiatric disorders such as dementia, geriatric depression, and anxiety. The relation between wireless calling plan and the two groups was significant. The two groups showed a significant difference only in the Short form of Geriatric Depression Scale (SGDS) score; The feature phone group had significantly higher SGDS score than the smartphone group did.
As the elderly mobile phone users showed a high level of need for health information and healthcare via their own mobile phones, the data of this study are expected to serve as a foundation for the development of elderly-friendly mobile applications and programs.


Feature phone; Smartphone; Mobile phone usage; Mental healthcare; The elderly; Korean version of Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale-Revised; Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index; Short form of Geriatric Depression Scale
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