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Best smart phone for seniors 2021 • 4 smart phones for seniors Reviews

Mobile technology is one of the hallmarks of our era, and it has led to a communication revolution. However, finding the right smartphone for seniors is not necessarily an easy task. In our guide, you’ll learn everything there is to know about smartphones tailored to seniors.

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Tested Products 4
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Evaluated Studies 146
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Considered Reviews 669

What is a smartphone for seniors and how does it work?

These mobile phones are designed for the needs of the elderly. This means that the majority of today’s standard mobile phone features are adapted so that seniors can use them more easily and comfortably. In that regard, there is a special emphasis on the main functions such as phone calls, messaging, audio, and easy accessibility to frequent contacts.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Smartphones for Seniors

This type of mobile phone has been designed to help the elderly become an integral part of the hyperconnected world in which we live. Grandchildren can now communicate with their grandparents, who will have a valuable tool in case of specific needs or emergency. Still, there are several advantages and disadvantages that come with smartphones for seniors in comparison to standard smartphones.

Advantages of smartphones for seniors include the following.

  • They are very resistant to falls and blows.
  • People can learn to use them relatively quickly.
  • They have significant battery autonomy.
  • Seniors have a safe, immediate, and accessible means of communication.
  • Some models include additional features such as cameras and flashlights.
Disadvantages of smartphones for seniors include the following.
  • Many models don’t include access to the internet.
  • The cameras tend to be very basic.
  • They can quickly become obsolete.

For urgent emergencies most senior smartphones integrate an SOS-button which will help users to call police, ambulance or even individualized emergency contacts by a single touch.

Shopping Criteria for Smartphones for Seniors

Nowadays, it is very difficult for a senior to communicate without a smartphone. Elderly people, like everyone, naturally want to interact with their friends and family, and they may also have emergencies that require immediate attention. If you’re unclear about the model for which you should opt, we’ve prepared a list of purchasing criteria to help you make your decision.

  • Software
  • Screen
  • Keyboard
  • Battery
  • Emergencies

Software

The main aspect that differentiates these models from regular smartphones is the software. First and foremost, it has to be clear and simple. Elderly people typically aren’t looking for complex features or very comprehensive ways to navigate their mobile phones. The basic use they want requires basic software, which is defined by its internal settings.

Screen

The screen is the very first aspect that a senior faces when buying a smartphone. While they don’t need a Full HD interface like those found in high-end models, they should still have a quality screen. Icons, navigation menus, and inscriptions should be large, with clear and easy-to-read letters.

Did you know that as of 2012, 69% of adults aged 65 or older owned a cell phone in the United States?

Keyboard

Smartphones for seniors often offer extra large keyboards with extra clear navigation options (for example: yes/no) for easy handling.

The keyboard tends to be the hardest thing for seniors to manage. They often find it hard to differentiate the keys or make typing errors if the keys are too close together. This is why you should check that the distribution of the buttons is optimal and easy to use. As we mentioned earlier, a model with a clamshell design will also help to prevent pocket dials.

Battery

It is essential that a senior’s smartphone always has battery power in case of a need or emergency. The good news is that most models have very large battery autonomy. That said, ensure that the batteries are at least 700 mAh and that the mobile phone doesn’t have unnecessary applications that consume excessive energy.

Emergencies

As we discussed previously, emergency calls are one of the main reasons elderly people look for smartphones. This is why the emergency button featured on many devices can be extremely useful. If the model you’re interested in doesn’t have this button, other settings can fulfill the same function and should be considered.

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FAQs

Why do seniors need smartphones?

As we mentioned earlier, elderly people aren’t digital natives and didn’t grow up using smartphones. Most of them didn’t need these devices in their work or family life. However, nowadays, most of society interacts and communicates using these mobile phones, but the incredible number of benefits and features they offer makes them difficult for a non-native user to integrate.

This is why many manufacturers have started marketing smartphones for seniors, with the aim of reducing the more complex functions and facilitating ease-of-use. Elderly people can therefore become an integral part of the hyperconnected world in which we live, which is particularly useful for meeting various needs.

How are smartphones for seniors different from regular smartphones?

The main goal of smartphones for seniors is that their basic features are easy to use while providing the highest possible quality. Regular smartphones—next-gen models in particular—integrate much more sophisticated features that the elderly often find complex or unnecessary.

Why do the batteries have so much autonomy?

This is due to the fact that the processors don’t need to work as hard since there are fewer applications running. As we said, few apps come preinstalled and seniors don’t typically download additional ones. In fact, elderly users rarely surf the internet or have social media accounts, allowing the battery to take care of basic functions only.

What do elderly users typically prioritize?

When it comes to smartphones, seniors' primary need is easy usability. This means that the screen interface must be straightforward, with large and clearly visible icons. The same goes for keyboards: The characters must be large enough to be easily identified and pressed.

Do these smartphones have an internet connection?

This depends. While models that do have internet connection are readily available and allow for access to applications and messaging services such as WhatsApp, many do not. Some people believe that those which fit in this latter category should not be called smartphones at all. The model you should buy will be influenced by the user's profile and ability.

Why do these smartphones sometimes have a clamshell design?

Since elderly people tend not to be very familiar with these smart devices, it is quite common for them to press numbers or keys by mistake or pocket dial. The clamshell design is a great fix for this problem, as it covers the whole keyboard and prevents unintentional calls that can become expensive.

You may also configure smartphones for seniors so that flipping it open or shut performs different functions. That way, elderly people can automatically answer and hang up their calls. This is particularly useful for seniors who prefer phone calls over text messages.

What is the SOS button?

Many mobile phones for seniors feature an SOS button for emergencies on their clamshell cover. This is how it works: When the button is pressed for an extended period of time, the phone automatically starts calling contacts that have already been preselected and registered in the system. If the first contact doesn’t answer, the phone moves on to the next one.

Is the voice function useful for seniors?

Many elderly people have visual and hearing impairments, which makes it difficult to use a keypad to call or send messages. The voice function allows them to perform these functions automatically at the touch of a button. That said, the audio system must be of high quality for it to pay off.

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