Smartphone technology has evolved to include helpful features specifically designed for seniors. In this article, Caledon Home Care Assistance reviews three of the best smartphones currently on the market.
What is a Smartphone?
To promote a better understanding of these phones, let’s begin with an overall description of a smartphone. A smartphone is a mobile phone that’s connected to an Internet provider. It enables the user to browse the web, send and receive e-mail, and install applications. Applications, better known as “Apps”, are software programs designed for mobile phones and portable computers. Apps enable access to informational sites such as weather, news, sports and more. They also provide recreation in the form of games, books, films, and music. A smartphone also features a compact camera which can take photos and video.
Now, let’s discuss three popular smartphones that are tailored to the needs and abilities of seniors and the aging population.
Samsung Galaxy S4 – Labeled “The Life Companion,” this touchscreen smartphone is lightweight, with a slim design. It’s speedy and fun to use.
- Senior-Friendly Features – The Galaxy S4 has a loud, adjustable speaker phone and a crystal clear display which boasts vibrant colors. “Easy Mode” provides 3 simple screens: programs, contacts, and tools. As the name implies, menus are easy to navigate. The “S” mode will track the user’s weight, blood glucose, blood pressure, steps, calories, and sleep quality.
- Unique Features – The “S Translator” is activated by voice or text and provides assistance in 10 languages and “Extra Sensitivity Mode” enables you to use the phone while wearing gloves, a nice feature during cold Canadian winters. You can even accept calls with a wave of your hand.
- Pricing – Virgin Mobile in Canada services the phone for $49.99 a month with a 2-year contract. The phone is also available through Bell, EastLink, Fido, Koodo Mobile, Latitude Wireless, MTS Mobility, NorthernTel, PC Mobile, Rogers, SaskTel, Tbaytel, TELUS, Videotron, and WIND Mobile.
DORO PhoneEasy 620 – The Doro PhoneEasy 620 has a clam-shell-type design. Its main features include a speakerphone, calculator, flashlight, FM radio, and weather function.
- Senior-Friendly Features – The phone fits comfortably in the hand and has large, raised buttons for easy operation. The menu also has large fonts and clear labeling and the camera doubles as a magnifying glass for seniors who may have a little trouble seeing.
- Unique Features – An emergency call button can dial and text 3 programmed numbers. You can also store medical information, such as allergies, conditions, and medications which can be helpful for both family and professional Caledon caregivers who may need access to such information in the case of an emergency.
- Pricing – The Doro PhoneEasy 620 sells for $60. The cost of voice plans vary according to service provider. Canadian retailers are Primus Wireless, Rogers, and Sears Connect.
Motorola Moto G – Computer World has named this phone “The best budget phone money can buy.”
- Senior-Friendly Features – Voice dialing and text-to-speech (TTS) assist those with vision impairment. The phone has a slim profile and curved back, fitting comfortably in the hand. The display is bright, with sharp text and vivid colors and sound quality is excellent.
- Unique Features – The phone has an outstanding battery life of 24 hours, which is unusual for a smartphone and is helpful for seniors who are not used to charging a cell phone regularly. The phone also has a GPS, and is compatible with Bluetooth technology.
- Pricing – The Moto G phone sells for $179 (8GB) and $199 (16GB). Retailers are Koodo Mobile, Mobilicity, PC Mobile, Public Mobile, Tbaytel, Videotron, Virgin Mobile, and WIND Mobile.
Smartphones can be pretty fancy, with lots of bells and whistles that the average senior may not need. However, the Samsung Galaxy S4, Doro PhoneEasy 620, and Motorola Moto G are senior-friendly and value-priced and make using a smartphone a pleasure!
*The above listings are for informational purposes only and do not represent an endorsement by (or for) Home Care Assistance.