What is The Best Cell Phone for Seniors

In this post, you will discover the what is the best cell phone for seniors. We will examine 5 smart phones suitable for seniors and 4 flip phones for seniors who want a simpler phone. Be examining their physical dimensions, features, and prices, we will help you decide on the best phone for the seniors in your life.

Introduction

Your dad is getting on in years and his eyes aren’t as good as they used to be. And his ears, well, he’s too proud to wear the hearing that he needs. He wants a phone that’s easy to read and plenty loud. He’s not into social media or apps, whatever they are, but he’d like a flagship phone that he could boast about to his buddies. Unfortunately, he’s accidentally destroyed his last three cell phones. What kind of phone should you get him?

Mom is slowing down and needs a little more help preparing those wonderful holiday meals. She loves to watch cat videos on her phone and look at family photos. Her favorite activity is sitting in the kitchen looking at the birds and squirrels out the window, while she calls her old friends. Some of them have moved away to live with their kids and she doesn’t see them as often as she’d like. What phone should you get her?

Great Aunt Clara is getting pretty frail. She wants to maintain her independence, but everyone expects she’ll be the next one to go. Your family tries to keep an eye on her, but you are all pretty busy. You have heard about some newer phones for seniors that not only have big buttons but also can summon help in an emergency. Do you think Aunt Clara needs one of these?

In Search of the Best Phone for Seniors

When looking for a senior phone, the first choice is: do you want a basic phone which is mainly for phone calls, or a smartphone which does everything under the sun. Also, consider which phone carrier your senior citizens have to use. Finally, does your senior have any disabilities that need to be taken into account? With these questions in mind, these phones are some the best on the market for seniors.

Flip Phone Comparisons

Phone Size (in.) & Weight (oz.) Screen Resolution (pixels) & Size Battery Capacity (Talk Time)
Samsung Galaxy S8 Active 5.99 x 2.95 x 0.39, 7.34 1440 x 2960, 5.8 in 4000 mAh (32 hrs)
ZTE Blade Z Max 6.54 x 3.33 x 0.33, 6.17 1080 x 1920, 6.0 in 4080 mAh (31 hrs)
Jitterbug Smart (GreatCall) 6.0 x 3.1 x 0.4, 6.1 720 x 1280, 5.5 in 2500mAh (9 hrs?)
Samsung Galaxy J3 (AT&T) 5.62 x 2.76 x 0.35, 5.36 720 x 1280, 5.0 in 2600 mAh (18.7 hrs)
BlackBerry KeyOne 5.87 x 2.85 x 0.37, 6.35 1080 x 1620, 4.5 in 3505 mAh (33.25)
Jitterbug Flip (GreatCall) 4.3 x 2.2 x 0.7, 4.7 320 x 480, 3.2 in 1780mAh (10 hrs)
Kyocera Cadence LTE 4.19 x 2.08 x 0.76, 4.7 240 x 320, 2.4 in 1430 mAh (7.2 hrs)
Kyocera DuraXTP (Sprint) 4.13 x 2.15 x 0.99, 5.75 240 x 320, 2.4 in 1500 mAh (6.80 hrs)
Snapfon ezTWO 3G 4.7 by 2.3 by 0.6, 2.3 240 x 320, 2.2 in 1000 nAh (4.5 hrs)

Samsung Galaxy S8 Active

Samsung Galaxy S8 Active

Price: Buy it new for less than $1050 on Amazon.

Features: Memory 4 GB, Processor, Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 MSM8998, Camera 12 megapixels, Flash, Autofocus, Camcorder 3840×2160 (4K) (30 fps), 2560×1440 (QHD), 1920×1080 (1080p HD) (60 fps), 1280×720 (720p HD) (240 fps), Voice dialing, Voice commands, Voice recording, TTY/TDD, Wifi, Bluetooth 5.1, LTE, MIL-STD-810 certified: IP 68 Water, Dust, Shock, Vibration resistant, FM radio, wireless charging

Good: Rugged, full-featured smartphone, wireless charging, big battery

Bad: A little expensive and heavy

Why Buy?: You want a nearly unbreakable smartphone that can do everything.

ZTE Blade Z Max (MetroPCS)

ZTE Blade Z Max

Price: Buy for less than $200 on Amazon.

Features: Memory 2GB, Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 8940, Camera 16 megapixels, Flash, Autofocus, Camcorder 1920×1080 (1080p HD) (30 fps), Voice dialing, Voice commands, Voice recording, TTY/TDD, Wifi, Bluetooth 4.2, LTE, Connector: USB Type-C (reversible), storage expandable to 128 GB

Good: Nice looking phone, big battery

Bad: Low pixel density, too little RAM for a smartphone

Why Buy?: You want a nice looking, low-cost MetroPCS smartphone

Jitterbug Smart (GreatCall)

Jitterbug Smart

Price: Buy for less than $120 on Amazon.

Features: Memory 1 GB, Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 MSM8909, Camera 5 megapixels, Flash, Autofocus, TTY/TDD, “speech to text technology”, Wifi, Bluetooth 4.0, LTE, a microSD card slot (for cards up to 32 GB), FM Radio

Good: Simple menus, a large suite of services for seniors: 5Star 24/7 emergency hotline, Med Coach (help you stay on top of your medications and daily health) and Urgent Care (app lets you talk to live doctors anytime)

Bad: set up may be complicated, Low pixel density, too little RAM for a smartphone

Why Buy?: You want a smartphone that is fully dedicated to senior needs.

Samsung Galaxy J3 (AT&T)

Samsung Galaxy J3

Price: Buy for less than $120 on Amazon.

Features: Memory 2 GB, Processor Samsung Exynos 7 Quad 7570, Camera 8 megapixels, Flash, Autofocus, Camcorder 1920×1080 (1080p HD) (30 fps), Voice dialing, Voice commands, Voice recording, TTY/TDD, Wifi, Bluetooth: 4.2, LTE, a microSD card slot (for cards up to 256 GB)

Good: looks more expensive than it is

Bad: Low pixel density, too little RAM for a smartphone

Why Buy?: You want a nice looking, low-cost AT&T smartphone

BlackBerry KeyOne (AT&T, Sprint)

BlackBerry KeyOne

Price: Buy for less than $520 on Amazon.

Features: Memory: 3 GB, Processor, Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 8953, Camera 12 megapixels, 12 megapixels, Flash, Dual LED, Camcorder 3840×2160 (4K) (30 fps), 1920×1080 (1080p HD) (30 fps), FM Radio, Voice dialing, Voice commands, Voice recording, Wifi, Bluetooth 4.2, LTE, storage up to 2000 GB, connector USB Type-C (reversible)

Good: real QWERTY keyboard

Bad: Blackberry is not cool with young people

Why Buy?: You want a very capable smartphone with a real keyboard.

Jitterbug Flip (GreatCall)

Jitterbug Flip

Price: Buy for less than $100 on Amazon.

Features: Memory 1 GB, Processor ?, Camera 2 megapixel, Flash, Flashlight, Bluetooth 3.0, LTE, 5Star button for emergency help, Yes/No keys for simplified navigation, Urgent Care (app lets you talk to live doctors anytime), Voice dial,

Good: good match of hardware and software for seniors

Bad: No Wifi, weak camera, No FM radio

Why Buy?: You want a flip phone that is fully dedicated to senior needs.

Kyocera Cadence LTE

Kyocera Cadence LTE (make sure you get a new one, supplies are limited)

Price: Buy for less than $275 on Amazon.

Features: Memory 2GB, Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 8909, Camera: 2 megapixels, Voice commands, TTY/TDD (for the deaf), Wifi, support for HD voice, Bluetooth 4.1, a microSD card slot (for cards up to 32 GB), can function as a hotspot

Good: Can receive emoji. Has an external display.

Bad: Camera is weak. Does not take or play video. Texting and menu options can be confusing. No global roaming. No flashlight. No FM radio.

Why Buy? You like the LG Exalt LTE but you also need an external display. The phone is also a little more compact than the LG Exalt and so can fit better in smaller hands.

Kyocera DuraXTP (Sprint)

Kyocera DuraXTP

Price: Buy for less than $250 Amazon.

Features: Memory 0.25 GB, Processor: Qualcomm QSC6185, Camera: 5 megapixels, Flash, Autofocus, Camcorder: 1280×720 (720p HD), Voice dialing, Voice recording, TTY/TDD, Push-to-Talk, Bluetooth: 3.0, a microSD card slot (for cards up to 32 GB), MIL-STD-810 certified: IP68 Water, Dust, Shock, Vibration, Temperature resistant

Good: Rugged, loud ringer and speaker

Bad: thick body, no Wifi, no radio, no automatic screen brightness, low pixel density

Why Buy?: You want a very rugged flip phone.

Snapfon ezTWO 3G

Snapfon ezTWO 3G

Price: Buy for less than $100 on Amazon.

Features: Memory? Processor? Camera 1.3 megapixel, Flash, Flashlight, SOS emergency button (connects to emergency contact via speakerphone, sends a text message to 4 programmable numbers, option to sound siren alarm)

Good: A Strong emergency system that doesn’t depend on GreatCall service.

Bad: Hard to find the full specs, so they must not be very impressive.

Why Buy?: You want a flip phone with a big red emergency button on the back.

So, what the best Senior Cell Phone?

Best phone for seniors: Jitterbug Smart

The best phone for seniors is the Jitterbug Smart from GreatCall. While it’s not the best phone for all people, it has been designed from the ground up in terms of hardware, software and services to serve seniors. The Jitterbug Smart has a much larger screen than any flip phone, so it is much easier for Seniors to read from and also to press the onscreen buttons. This phone is big enough not become lost easily and heavy enough to feel solid in your senior’s hands. The price seems right for the features you get.

The best flip phone for seniors is the Jitterbug Flip from GreatCall, for largely the same reasons as the Jitterbug Smart. Plus, it has a dedicated emergency button and can be used as a portable flashlight. This flip has a big dedicated number pad for dialing and larger, separated, Yes and No keys for easy menu activation. If your senior wants a basic phone, this is a great choice.

Looks like a Samsung

The best flagship phone for seniors or anyone who needs a rugged phone is the Samsung S8 Active. It far surpasses the other phones in terms of high-end specifications. You don’t need to be a senior to love this phone, but it wouldn’t hurt.

The other phones all have their pluses and depending on your carrier, could be the best phone your needs.

That’s what I think, please share your thoughts in the comments below.

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2 Responses

  1. Reyhana says:

    This is a great selection of phones for seniors. My grandparents are not too tech savvy and so they prefer something that is not a touch phone. They don’t want to accidentally get into apps they don’t know how to use or get out of.

    I will look into the flip phones you suggest to see if they might appeal to my grandparents. Thanks a ton!

    • Peter Barban says:

      Glad to hear it. Seniors can get so lonely and sometimes insecure without an easy way to contact their loved ones. Smart phones are crazy complicated if you didn’t grow up with them. I’m sure your grandparents will really appreciate the phone you get them.

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