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We plan to test the iPhone 15 and Google Pixel 8 when they’re released and will update this guide with our findings soon.
Verizon Simple Cell Phones For Seniors
For seniors, choosing a mobile phone is not a one-time offer. We spoke to people in their 70s and 80s who couldn’t wait to try out the latest smartphones with high-megapixel cameras. We’ve also spoken to people aged 60 and over who support the simplicity of simpler phones.
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After testing 15 models, we recommend two full-featured smartphones, a simplified smartphone, a phone for people with dementia or memory problems, and a simple non-smartphone. All of these offer unique safety, health and accessibility features that many seniors and caregivers will appreciate.
I have reported on health care issues for nearly three decades, and specifically on aging and health for the past 10 years. I write stories about health, mental health and age technology as they relate to seniors for Time, Fortune and other major online and print publications. I spoke with consumer technology experts, manufacturers, and aging and disability experts. And I consult with seniors and caregivers across the US about what makes a phone “senior friendly.” I have also been a family caregiver and once researched and purchased a phone for an elderly person with cognitive decline and vision loss.
I’ve read clinical studies and talked to researchers about the benefits of cell phones for seniors and their families. These benefits include helping to reduce isolation and loneliness, allowing the person to maintain a sense of independence and giving carers greater peace of mind.
Many of the phones we tested would be perfect for disabled people of any age who need phones with accessibility features.
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We also consider the needs of family caregivers who purchase cell phones for older loved ones so they can stay in touch, get help in an emergency, and maintain their independence.
This phone has an easy-to-read, large screen and has the most robust health and safety features, including off-network SOS and other accessibility options, of any of our picks. But it is expensive.
Who’s it for: Any older person who’s comfortable with technology and willing to spend more for a top-of-the-line smartphone with a range of accessibility features and the most comprehensive health and safety features of all the phones we tested.
The iPhone 14 Plus has a large screen, but it’s still relatively light. People with small hands or reduced grip strength may find it difficult to grasp. Photo: Marki Williams
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Apple iPhone 14 Plus is the standard bearer of smartphones with a large screen, long battery life and many important features suitable for the needs of the elderly. It’s also one of the iPhones we recommend for most people.
It plays an important role in health and safety. Of all the phones we tested, the iPhone 14 Plus has the most health and safety features, from crash detection (which automatically contacts emergency services if you’re in a car accident) to off-grid emergency SOS using GPS (which lets you contact emergency services , even if you are not near a cell tower). The built-in health app on this phone has more monitoring options than the apps on all the phones we tested.
It has new and customizable accessibility features. iPhone 14 Plus has features and options that allow people with hearing, vision or dexterity problems to use the phone to their advantage.
It has a large screen and is quite light. Compared to the rest of the iPhone 14 line, the iPhone 14 Plus takes the top spot, offering a larger screen (6.7 inches) and a slightly lighter weight (7.16 ounces).
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It has a good camera. The iPhone 14 Plus has two cameras, one for taking regular photos and one for taking wide-angle photos. It takes some of the best photos we’ve seen, even in low light. Both the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max add a telephoto lens, but the size, weight and cost of this phone make losing that lens tolerable; this camera should be fine for most shooting situations.
It has strong privacy protection. Apple’s iOS privacy protection and information sharing capabilities are among the best available. Options include blocking ads and email tracking, limiting location sharing, customizing app permissions, and blocking Safari trackers.
The call quality is very good. The speech enhancement feature helps cancel out background noise, which is important for everyone, including those who use hearing aids or may have hearing loss. Calls our testers made and received through the speakerphone were clear and loud.
The latest Samsung phone offers a larger, crystal clear screen and a wide range of health, safety and accessibility features. But it’s the most expensive Android phone we’ve tested.
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Who’s it for: Seniors who are comfortable with the Android ecosystem and those looking for a high-end smartphone with a great camera and tons of health, safety, and accessibility features.
Because the Samsung Galaxy S23+ is relatively large, the screen is easy to read. But people with small hands or limited strength may find it uncomfortable to hold. Photo: Marki Williams
Samsung Galaxy S23+ is the most advanced smartphone. It has the best screen we’ve seen on an Android phone and one of the highest resolution cameras. And it comes with more pre-installed health and safety features than any other Android phone. But it’s also the most expensive Android option we’ve tested.
It has pre-installed security features. The Galaxy S23+ comes with a pre-installed security app that allows other people to track the user’s location. Scheduled security checks trigger an alert to the user, sending confirmation that everything is fine; otherwise, it contacts the emergency services and the designated contact within a specified time period. This app is included in other Android models and is a feature that differentiates Android phones from iPhones.
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It has many accessibility options. This phone doesn’t have as many accessibility options as the iPhone 14 Plus, but it does offer several important features: an “interaction and dexterity” setting (useful for anyone who needs to change -type on the keyboard using touch), voice. – control options and visual and auditory enhancements (including text-to-speech and sound amplification options). Like the iPhone 14 Plus, the Galaxy S23+’s display and text size are customizable. Bixby’s voice assistant can control apps, send texts, make calls, and call for emergency help (we found it to be more accurate than Apple’s Siri, but requires Samsung’s cloud service).
It has a very sharp large screen. Of all the Android phones we’ve tested, this phone’s 6.6-inch screen is the best, and it’s sharper than the iPhone 14 Plus. This is especially useful for people who have difficulty reading small letters.
It has excellent call quality and volume. In our tests, call quality on the Galaxy S23+ was excellent, and speaker volume was on par with the iPhone 14 Plus. However, if you have hearing loss, you may want to consider enabling some hearing enhancement features, such as speech enhancement or adaptive sound (which determines the appropriate sound level based on your age). Or you can create a personalized sound level tailored to your hearing ability.
This reasonably priced model is aimed at seniors who want a simplistic smartphone that offers easy navigation without the need to download additional apps. It also provides 24/7 emergency monitoring capability.
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Who it’s for: Seniors who want a simplified smartphone and the ability to add health and safety services, and those who don’t mind paying extra for access to live agents.
The popular Lively Jitterbug Smart3 uses text menus to make phone navigation easier for those who want a simplified smartphone. We think it’s also good for some people with memory or vision problems.
It is easy to use. Text navigation makes setup very easy. Features can be selected as easily as tapping on the feature list: “phone call”, “text message”, “camera”, “web browser” or “maps”. Menus are clearly labeled in large, easy-to-read letters; This eliminates the need to remember the meaning of different icons or the difficulty of reading the icon name.
It uses voice commands. Audio and voice features help you make and receive calls and messages. This is useful for people with low vision or any user who prefers to speak rather than type.
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It offers additional health and safety services. Additional health and safety service options are included in these phone calling plans. These services, which include 24-hour emergency response and help with everything from emergency medical care to calling a locksmith, start at around $25 a month as of this writing. For an additional fee, you can upgrade to receive additional services, including phone access to an on-call nurse and care coordinator, as well as a personal concierge service (which helps with tasks such as booking a rideshare service, looking up phone numbers, providing driving directions or making calls). This service is included in Lively’s premium health and safety package.
This phone is specially designed
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