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Thread: Smartphone for an elderly, tech-challenged person?

  1. #1
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    Smartphone for an elderly, tech-challenged person?

    Hello,

    I am planning to get a smartphone for an elderly relative, who isn't too used to technology. However, she does have experience with smartphones and touchscreen phones; she is currently using an LG Optimus T, which was released in 2010. My relative does not use data, and she mainly uses her phone for calling, light texting, and picture-taking. There is a deal on a Amazon Fire Phone, so I am thinking about grabbing that.

    Is there an app of some sort that will simplify smartphones for the elderly? I have seen smartphones designed just for the elderly who are not too used to smartphones, but am not sure if I can add an app or OS with a similar function to a regular smartphone.

    I can probably just remove all the bloatware and unnecessary apps on a smartphone, then increase the text size somehow, at worst. Any thoughts?

    Thank you.

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    Search custom launchers in the Play store (assuming that installs okay on Fire phones). One I remember is called Simple Launcher - fills the homescreen with big easy-to-read buttons for phone, text, etc.

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    Get her a Windows Phone like the Lumia 635 for dirt cheap right (Under $40) now. A small investment if she doesn't take to it. Simplest and most intuitive interface available, and just keeps working properly without lots of tweaking. Pop in a SIM card from PureTalk and get her on something like the 500-minute plan for $12.95 a month with autopay (no fiddling with PIN numbers etc. every month). Being a senior she gets an extra 10% free minutes a month up to 750. No requirement to purchase data, but she can get 400mb for 9.95 extra if she wants. Great customer phone service if she needs it. AT&T network with LTE, though she doesn't really need that if she doesn't use data.

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    I just bought the Amazon Fire phone during the sale $159 (includes a years subscription to Amazon Prime) for my Mother-in-law. I am in the process of setting it up for her and plan on surprising her this week. She has never had a cell phone ever so the differences in the operating system of forked android vs. stock android or IOS will not matter to her. I am trying to make it as simple as possible for her and will add more apps later as she wants.

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    You can try the Consumer Cellular Doro 824 smarteasy, it has a simplified interface and comes with 5 inch touchscreen and has an emergency alert button. It's offered by Consumer Cellular for $200and you can get it starting from $50 with the easy pay service.

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    iPhones are pretty simple. That would be my choice for a non-tech savvy user.

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    Is Jitterbug or Consumer Cellular in any way better for older folks than other carriers/mvnos?

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    Smartphone for an elderly, tech-challenged person?

    Quote Originally Posted by rambo47 View Post
    iPhones are pretty simple. That would be my choice for a non-tech savvy user.
    The assistive features are also pretty good. Possibly important for an older person with less than perfect vision and/or hearing.

    My agenda here would also be to get something I am prepared to support, possibly even remotely. Something that is not a known quantity may be a bad idea. This comes from having spent a fair bit of time trying to support my technically challenged father in law with his computing/phone needs.
    "I didn't get fat by accident. This was a personal choice. " - Kevin Gillespie

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    Are older iPhones as good for this purpose as newer models?

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