The results from many research efforts on the use of assistive devices are reviewed and summarized. Further, conceptual and methodological issues related to the use and abandonment of assistive technologies are discussed. Overall, this review should be helpful to professionals making device recommendations, documenting the need for a device, and assessing short- and long-term device utilization. The available literature lends support to a model of matching person and technology that considers environments of device use, characteristics of the user's preferences and expectations, and device features and functions. To ensure that assistive technologies enhance users' quality of life, future emphases should focus on consumer involvement in the selection and evaluation of appropriate assistive technology, and ways to make technologies more widely available and affordable.