Got Neck Pain? Blame Your Smartphone

Pity our poor necks, constantly bending forward for long periods as we read, text and play games on our smartphones, e-readers, iPads and other tech toys. The result of all this continual downward gazing is a growing number of people complaining about neck and back pain – or “text neck,” as the condition was dubbed by a Florida chiropractor. Slouching in a chair or on the couch reading your iPad – call it “iSlouch” – is causing similar aches and …

Shopping With Credit-Card Readers Attached to Smartphones

If my friend Beth’s recent holiday buying is any indication, shoppers are in for a more-connected experience. Last week, my 82-year-old buddy wanted to buy a platter at her church bazaar. She was met with a “newfangled credit-card” gadget. “The salesgirl told me to slide my credit card through a little square thing attached to her phone,” Beth told me.  “She said it was safe, I did it, I hope it was ok.” That small device called Square is a …

Upgrading to Apple’s iOS 7? You May Want to Wait

If you are using an iPhone 4, 4S or 5, and are thinking about upgrading to Apple’s new operating system iOS 7-be prepared for a learning curve. I hear a lot of talk these days about iOS 7, but a lot of it isn’t very positive-especially when it comes from 60-something users on older phones. For starters, the iPhone 4 and 4S may not have enough memory to handle the upgrade without  removing some apps and photos to open up …

40,000 Health Apps: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Christine Porter is hooked on the My Fitness Pal app. In October, after deciding to lose 50 pounds, Porter started typing in everything she eats, drinks and any exercise she gets. “This is like my main page here,” says Porter, who lost 42 pounds in nine months. “It’s telling me I have about 1,200 calories remaining for the day. When I want to record something I just click the ‘add to diary’ button. I’m on it all day either through my …

Could a Smartphone Save Your Life?

By Elizabeth Stawicki, Minnesota Public Radio, Kaiser Health News It’s one of those unhappy holiday surprises — a visiting family member gets sick. That happened to Dr. Farzad Mostashari last Thanksgiving. “My dad comes downstairs and he has acute pain in his eye where he had cataract surgery. And I said, ‘What’s the matter, what’s the story?’” recalled Mostashari, who lives in Bethesda, Md. “And he said, ‘Well, I think they put the wrong lens in my eye, I’d gone …

Are Ageist Smartphone Commercials a Dumb Move?

If you watch TV, by now you’ve probably seen the pool-party commercial for the new Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone. The spot shows hip college-age revelers befuddling their iPhone-using elders with all of the phone’s flashy technology – such as the AirView feature that allows users to answer the phone by sweeping their fingers over the screen without actually touching it, a camera mode that allows them to take rapid-fire pictures of moving objects and an app that transforms the phone …