Technology companies are ignoring the needs of older users when designing gadgets, says a product design expert at Middlesex University.

Mike Bradley said: "The importance of being connected digitally has been recognised by the UK Government, however, these efforts are hampered by the way the majority of technology companies are still designing their interfaces for young users and not considering older customers' needs."

Bradley's comments come on the 10th annual Silver Surfers' Day .The event, which first took place in 2002, is designed to help older people start using computers and the internet.

"Research has shown that touchscreen technologies can offer a low learning barrier for older customers, as they don't have to learn how to use a mouse and master a complicated keyboard," said Bradley

"The latest tablet devices such as the Apple iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab provide the potential for ease of learning and use for older people. However, in their current form the interfaces require the users to be able to infer meaning from confusing symbols and to have previous experience with digital technology to be able to use them and understand them."