It is perhaps poignant – but Alexa appears to make pensioners feel less lonely.
In a study, 57 residents in the UK who were aged 65 and over, were given the Amazon Echo device to use for a month.
Four in five of them said the voice assistant made them feel less lonely and isolated.
Before the trial, 49 per cent of participants said they felt cheerful. But after the first fortnight of using it, this rose to 68 per cent and, by the end, 75 per cent felt happier.
The study, which was commissioned by the tech giant, also found that the device increased feelings of calm and relaxation.
One participant said: ‘It makes me feel more confident using technology and is in some ways a sort of companion to me.’
Alexa can make pensioners feel less lonely and isolated a new study has found (file image)
Broadcaster and Strictly star Angela Rippon (pictured), 79, who has teamed up with Amazon to raise awareness of how Alexa can help older people, said she used it for making her shopping list
The most common task they used Alexa for was to check the weather forecast followed by listening to music and podcasts, keeping up with the news and answering questions.
One in three used the device to remind them to take their medication at the right time.
Broadcaster and Strictly star Angela Rippon, 79, who has teamed up with Amazon to raise awareness of how Alexa can help older people, said she used it for making her shopping list.
She said: ‘AI voice services like Alexa can bring family and friends into your home and because it’s voice-activated, there is no complicated technology involved.
‘It’s so easy to use and can answer your questions about the weather – or even how to perfect the cha-cha.’