BACKGROUND: The United Kingdom is challenged in terms of how it provides services for the growing number of older people and the associated rise of those living with long term health conditions into old age. Demographic and technological changes present a real opportunity for the assisted living technology industry to develop new innovations to connect and enable dispersed families to provide support to their loved ones within a consumer marketplace. OBJECTIVE: Under the dallas i-Focus programme, the Advanced Digital Institute, with partner Coventry University, developed the Warm Neighbourhoods® AroundMe™ service to help people live at home and enable friends and family to support them using existing connected home sensor technologies to detect usual daily routines. METHOD: A new, consumer-focussed assistive technology service was designed through co-creation. The service was piloted over 3 months within 12 personal ``neighbourhoods'' using a Living Lab methodology. RESULTS: Results were overwhelmingly positive. Participants easily saw the AroundMe™ service as a consumer offering. Participants found the service reassuring and unobtrusive whilst promoting independence of the main user and providing support for carers. CONCLUSIONS: It became apparent that a unique selling point of the new service was that it was distinguishable from other existing message and emergency response type services to focus on wellbeing and ``I'm okay'' information as opposed to ``I need help''. Within a consumer market it seems that people are willing to pay for peace of mind and reassurance. Success of the pilot service was due to the application of established service design principles to make the service effective and desirable and testing within a Living Lab to develop a simple service that fits technology into the daily lives of families.
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ward, G., Holliday, N., Awang, D., & Harson, D. (2015). Creative approaches to service design: Using co-creation to develop a consumer focused assistive technology service. Technology and Disability, 27(1-2), 5-15. https://doi.org/10.3233/TAD-150424