If you are shopping cell phones for seniors, you may be interested to know that there are several models designed just for the unique needs of seniors. The best cell phones for seniors are those that have large, easy to read buttons and displays with simple, uncomplicated menus.
While many seniors have resisted getting a cell phone, in part, because they may seem like an unnecessary luxury, more and more seniors are beginning to view cell phones as potential lifesavers. Some of the phones profiled are specially designed for those that may have issues with hearing or vision.
Other phones that may be good for senior citizens include phones that are easy to operate. In this article, we’ll examine some of those models and see why the particular models listed are generally a good fit for most senior citizens.
The Jitterbug phones were designed with senior citizens in mind. There are no bells and whistles on these phones; instead, they offer a simple, uncomplicated user experience, which is just what senior citizens need. The Jitterbug phones feature simple to use yes and no menus, operator assistance, and large buttons and displays. The operator will even help add contacts to the address book, and there is a voice dial.
Jitterbug phones are the best cell phones for seniors who only want to use a cell phone once in a while or in an emergency. Plans start at only $14.99; however, for seniors who want or need to use the phone more often, there are several different plans to choose from. You can change your plan anytime without a penalty, and best of all, there are no contracts with Jitterbug. All plans also include long distance calling with no roaming charges.
The Snapfon ezTWO is regarded as one of the best cell phones for seniors because it was actually designed to meet the unique needs of many senior citizens. It’s a durable cell phone with a simple candy bar. It has big, easy-to-read buttons plus a large red emergency button on the back to contact emergency services at any time. The device works with any GSM carrier as well as the SnapMobile service with plans that start for as little as $9.95 per month.
The phone is available through Amazon for $67.99 or Snapfon for $19.95, with a monthly $9.95/month service plan for 60 minutes or $29.95 for unlimited.
Buy From Amazon Prime: Snapfon ezTWO Senior For $67.99
10 Tips to purchase a cell phone for a senior
Following are 10 tips that seniors or anyone purchasing a cell phone for a senior may find helpful when navigating the cell phone industry. Remember, too, that with some carriers and with some plans, you may be able to find free cell phones for seniors.
Keep It Simple
Most senior citizens don’t care to play music on their phone, and they may not even care for a camera. For the most part, they want to be able to make a phone call when they are away from home or during an emergency. Large numbers and displays, easy to navigate menus, and call quality are some of the most important features seniors look for and need in a cell phone. Aside from these features, the best cell phones for seniors are the ones that address their individual needs, so it is important to know how the phone will be used, and if the senior in your life has any particular issues that must be addressed.
Look For Budget Friendly Plans
Most senior citizens don’t get on the phone and chat with their friends the way teenagers do. They simply want a reliable phone to work when they need to make a phone call. There’s no reason to pay for a plan with a zillion minutes per month if the senior in your life only use the phone for emergencies. Keep in mind, too, that free cell phones for seniors may not be worth it if the free phone comes with an expensive plan or too long a commitment.
Not everyone wants or needs to have a cell phone contract or a bill to pay every month, especially if they are just using the phone once in a while or for emergencies. There are several prepaid options that may fit into a senior’s lifestyle without the added burden of a commitment or a monthly bill. AT&T has both pays as you go and prepaid plans for their prepaid cell phone service. With the pay as you go, you can choose the kind of plan you like without any credit check or commitments. While you won’t be able to find free cell phones for seniors by going prepaid, you also won’t have to worry about a commitment or a surprise on your monthly bill.
Choose A Cell Phone With Amplified Sound
For seniors that may not be able to hear as well as they once did, there are cell phones for seniors that come with amplified sound. The ClarityLife C900 is twice as loud as regular cell phones, so it may be ideal for someone with hearing loss. In addition, this phone features large buttons, a red emergency button, and a flashing visual ringer.
Choose A Cell Phone That Is Hearing Aid Compatible
Many people don’t realize that there are cell phones that are hearing aid compatible. What’s more, there are ratings that will let you know which phones work best. These ratings are classified as “M” ratings and “T” ratings. AT&T maintains an updated list of phones that are Hearing Aid Compatible (HAC) on their website
Choose A Cell Phone Designed For Seniors
The Jitterbug has been specifically designed with senior citizens in mind. Seniors who have dexterity problems or hearing or vision loss will appreciate the special features of the Jitterbug models. The display is easy to read and the buttons are large. Designed by cell phone pioneers, the Jitterbug may be just the perfect phone for the senior in your life.
Choose A Cell Phone With Large Buttons
No matter how many great features a cell phone has, if the person can’t see the buttons, or if they are so small that one finger pushes two buttons, the recipient is likely to give up in frustration and not use the phone at all. When you are looking for cell phones for seniors, look for a cell phone with large buttons.
Choose A Cell Phone With A Dedicated 911 Key
A dedicated 911 button can come in handy during emergencies and with only one button to push, it makes it easier to summon help even when you’re nervous and flustered. The Samsung Knack has such a key and CNET has a detailed review of this particular phone on their website
Choose A Cell Phone With A Large, Bright Display
Read cell phone reviews and try to test out a few models before you decide on one particular model when you are shopping for the best cell phones for seniors. Cell phones without a bright, easy to read display will likely result in frustration. Also, look for a display that stays lighted for more than a second or two, as this can be frustrating when you are in the middle of reading something and the display goes dark.
Choose A Cell Phone Plan Designed For Seniors
Remember to not only keep the cell phone itself simple, but the plan you choose for wireless service for the senior in your life is important also. Most seniors don’t need unlimited nights and weekends or unlimited text messaging. Remember, too to add on safety features, such as roadside assistance. This way, your loved one can easily call for assistance if they become stranded on the road.
Overall, the best cell phones for seniors are those that are simple to use with large displays and large buttons. Depending on how much the senior in your life wishes to use the phone, you may want to consider prepaid options or options that offer service with no contractual obligations, such as Jitterbug. For seniors that have hearing issues, look for cell phones that have hearing aid capabilities, flashing visuals upon ringing, or amplified sound. In addition, if your senior uses a TDD/TYY, look for cell phones that are compatible with this device.
While you can find free cell phones for seniors, the drawback here is that they often come with a contractual commitment, which is often for two years. Before you accept a deal that includes a free cell phone, look closely at the fine print and make sure you are aware of all the details. Many seniors just want a cell phone in case of emergency or when they are away from home; other senior citizens use cell phones much more often. At any rate, look for specific cell phone plans for seniors, especially for those senior citizens who won’t be using their phone very often, as you can find some really great deals, especially through those companies that sell wireless phones that are designed especially for senior citizens.