Stay­ing Con­nected

Simply Her (Singapore) - - Parents 101 -

The Pok fam­ily are an IT-savvy lot. They’re ex­perts when it comes to us­ing Face­book, What­sapp, chat­ting via Facetime, surf­ing the In­ter­net and trad­ing online. In fact, they ad­mit that tech­nol­ogy is so much a part of their lives now that they can’t live with­out it.

Wil­liam Pok, 61, re­tiree He surfs the Web and logs on to Face­book al­most ev­ery day. He con­stantly sends What­sapp mes­sages to his fam­ily and friends, and chats with them on Facetime, es­pe­cially with his younger brother, Vin­cent, as they share the same in­ter­ests. “I got hooked on us­ing the In­ter­net when I started trad­ing in the stock mar­ket online. I even­tu­ally be­gan us­ing smart­phone apps as they’re re­ally con­ve­nient.”

Wil­liam also loves search­ing for web­sites that give live golf up­dates, as some tour­na­ments are not aired live in Sin­ga­pore. He also oc­ca­sion­ally posts pic­tures of him­self and writes com­ments on Face­book to stay in touch with his friends. “When I first started us­ing the In­ter­net, I was wary of what I clicked on. I didn’t dare to ex­plore too much as I was wor­ried that the com­puter would ex­plode if I made a wrong move,” he said. “But now, I’m ex­cited about learn­ing new things.”

Vin­cent Pok, 58, semi-re­tired He pays his bills online and reg­u­larly uses his iPhone’s Facetime func­tion to chat with his brother Wil­liam, as well as his sis­ter who lives in Latvia. “This is very im­por­tant to me. Now that I can chat with her and see her any time I want, I don’t miss her as much any­more.” The func­tion came in handy too when his daugh­ter was study­ing in Aus­tralia.

Vin­cent also uses Face­book to stay con­nected with his rel­a­tives, who are mostly over­seas, and de­pends on his smart­phone for news up­dates.

His ad­vice to se­niors? Don’t throw in the towel so eas­ily. “You need to learn by trial and er­ror. When I first started, I ac­ci­den­tally deleted files all the time. But I kept on try­ing and learnt from there. Don’t be em­bar­rassed to ask. I love learn­ing about tech­nol­ogy – it keeps my mind ac­tive.”

Mary Ho, 55, stu­dent re­la­tions ofcer She jumped on the smart­phone band­wagon when her hus­band, Vin­cent, in­tro­duced her to it. She now uses her phone to watch dra­mas and movies. Mary also surfs the Net for prod­uct re­views.

“I go to Ebay and base my pur­chas­ing de­ci­sions on the re­views. But I do lit­tle online shop­ping – I ask my daugh­ter to buy things for me.”

She’s a reg­u­lar tex­ter on What­sapp with her friends and col­leagues, and loves post­ing pic­tures of food on her Face­book page. “If the food is nice, I’ll snap a photo and share it with my friends.”

She too be­lieves that se­niors shouldn’t be afraid of tech­nol­ogy. “Sign up for a course and learn from scratch. De­velop your ba­sic com­puter skills – learn its func­tions and how to op­er­ate it. Once you’ve gained con­fi­dence, you won’t fear tech­nol­ogy any­more.”

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