Tech tips to keep the whole family happy
How many of your family's arguments started with technology? We shudder to think. But there are ways to keep waters calm.
In a modern family, everyone is exposed to technology. From the curious toddler though to aging grandparents, technology is part of our daily lives. But it doesn't always run smoothly.
Just think. How much household bickering has been borne from technology? Kids complaining there's nothing to watch. Working parents bemoaning slow Internet speeds. Grandparents frustrated when nobody will explain new gadgets to them, again.
If that sounds like your family, don't worry. We've partnered with iPrimus to bring you some simple tech hacks that could keep everyone happy. Or at least not at each other's throats.
Start a family group chat
If you're in a hectic family group chat you might disagree with this one but, get this, they're actually proven to be a sign of happier families.
A University of Hong Kong study found family members who chat online together scored higher when asked about their happiness, satisfaction and communication quality.
And it wasn't a fluke. A study published in the International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction reported similar findings. Basically, the more time people spent on group chats, the closer they felt to their friends or family.
Choose streaming services together
Set a budget and get everyone involved in choosing which streaming services or platforms you sign up to. If they've been part of the decision, they'll be slower to blame someone for choosing poorly. It's also a learning opportunity for budgeting if you've got kids.
If your kids are a little young, keep your eyes peeled for offers that can make services more affordable. Some Internet providers will run promotions which give discounted access to entertainment platforms. For example, iPrimus gives customers the option to add Fetch to their bundle for an extra $10 a month.
Educate your kids on cyber safety
Sadly, 1 in 5 young Australians have been the subject of social exclusion, threats or abuse online. Worryingly, the same percentage admitted to behaving negatively towards others online.
If you've got kids, talk to them about how to recognise negative behaviour and the potential impact it can have on others. If you're not sure where to start, the eSafety Commissioner website has heaps of resources for parents and young people.
It's also important to talk to your kids about the threat of online predators and activate age-appropriate safety settings across all platforms and devices. Here are the relevant privacy settings for Facebook, Messenger Kids, Instagram and TikTok.
Get home Internet that works for everyone
When Internet speeds are running slow, it doesn't take long for accusations to be thrown about who's stealing the bandwidth and whether they're hogging more than their fair share.
When choosing a plan, always chat to your provider about which one is most suitable for your family. Look for one that caters to multiple devices, so working parents aren't constantly lagging on Zoom calls, tense movie moments aren't ruined by buffering, and the family's gamers can play unhindered.
🔥 Hot tip: iPrimus's home super fast plan is just $90 a month for the first 6 months, then $115 after that. It allows for 8K video streaming, faster "off peak" gaming downloads and multiple video conferences. You just have to sign up before the end of August to score the 6-month discount.
Learn about hackers and malware
It's important to teach your kids how to spot dodgy websites and suspicious emails – but adults fall victim to scams too. Plus, cyber criminals use increasingly sophisticated tactics all the time, so it's worth doing family recaps on a semi-regular basis.
Check out esafety.gov.au for some tips and consider installing a security app on devices that are used by less tech-savvy family members. This will provide an extra defence barrier if your kid, partner or elderly parent clicks on something they shouldn't have.
Look for flexibility
If the last 18 months has taught us anything, it's that nothing is certain. As such, it's worth looking for an Internet plan that will respond to your changing needs.
For example, iPrimus lets customers upgrade or downgrade their plans at any time. Get plunged into lockdown? Upgrade and get higher speeds to keep everyone happy. Headed back to work? Drop down a notch and save some cash. Easy.
Interestingly, Primus has also ditched lock-in contracts. Instead, there's a one-time set-up fee of just $70, which includes the modem, then a rolling monthly bill after that. That means no sneaky cancellation costs to be wary of.
This could come in particularly handy if you think your living arrangements might change, if you love browsing for better deals or even if you just have cash flow problems from time to time. (Don't we all?)
Seek out support
More and more seniors are embracing technology but they don't always have the support they need to truly get the most out of it.
In fact, in 2019, researchers from RMIT University found "high" levels of digital device ownership, but only "moderate" levels of confidence in using them.
Teaching an older relative to use technology can be frustrating, but it can be just as frustrating for those trying to learn from someone who is impatient or intolerant.
If tensions are rising when you're trying to teach an older relative about technology, take a step back and look into local classes that specialise in tech support for seniors.
Compare iPrimus plans
*The iPrimus Home Superfast NBN250 plan is a new plan based on the Home Superfast wholesale speed tier with a theoretical maximum speed of 250Mbps and is only available to FTTP and HFC customers in select areas. There is not currently enough data to provide a Typical Evening Speed.