Its been a strange old last 12 months hasn’t it? As we tentatively start to emerge into whatever this “new normal” looks like, it’s made me think about how many things will have changed permanently and what, despite everything, we have so much to be grateful for. Pretty much right up there at the top of my list is technology – can you imagine this global scenario having taken place 30 or even just 10 years ago?
Whilst I’ve been super grateful for Netflix to stop me going insane and Facetime for catching up with friends, technology has been just as widely adopted by the older generations, once lovingly referred to as “silver surfers”. My Mum uses Facebook, What’s App, and has been having Zoom book clubs. Mobile phones aren’t just the preserve of the young, with more older people picking up devices every year to stay in touch with relatives or access the internet.
Whilst technology is a godsend especially in this past year for helping us to keep in touch, it does also present untold risks to the vulnerable with scammers eager to try and lure people out of their savings. Trusted organisations like Age UK and Saga provide resources to help older users make the most of their devices, but potential customers will often turn to relatives to help them decide which phone is right for them.
Here are five options to suit all budgets and confidence levels.
Emporia handsets are targeted specifically at older users who may not have much experience with smartphones or, if they do, they aren’t all that confident about using them.
The emporiaSMART.5 is their latest device, offering a straightforward, slimmed-down Android experience without compromising on features. It even comes complete with its own case, a Smartcover that allows users to access the most important features of the phone (calling features, camera access and torch) without opening the case, and there’s an emergency contact button on the back too.
There’s plenty to like about the emporiaSMART.5 and it would make a great entry device for older relatives who want the full functionality of a smartphone but might be intimidated by the usual Android experience.
However, it isn’t the cheapest phone in this list, and the £250 price tag may be too much for some older people who don’t think they’ll get much use out of a smartphone to begin with.
2. Nokia 2720 Flip
Nokia have rejuvenated several of their famous phones in recent years, but the Nokia 2720 Flip is a favourite thanks to its compact design. Whereas some phones feel over-large in the bag or coat pocket, flip phones cut that problem in half.
One of the main draws of the Nokia 2720 Flip is the reported 28-day battery life, something that’s ideal for older users who may not use their phone very often and don’t want the hassle of daily charging. Of course, the 28-day figure is one highlighted by Nokia themselves, so it may not match real-world experiences of customers. Even so, it’s battery life is far longer than other devices on this list.
The Nokia 2720 Flip shows the caller ID on the phone’s outer screen, plus it has large buttons and the option to configure an emergency contact button. It retails for between £80 and £90, depending on the offers available.
3. Doro 8050
Doro are another brand focused on older users, with their Doro 8050 offering a simple Android experience without losing the features customers need to stay connected.
The Doro 8050 looks and feels like a typical smartphone, but it provides an intuitive, uncluttered display that many users will soon grow comfortable with. Doro have also worked on the sound quality of their devices, so most customers will find it’s easy to hear the person they’re speaking to or the video they’re trying to watch.
Just like the previous two devices, the Doro 8050 comes with an emergency contact button, plus it’s been designed for durability so it can withstand a few drops and falls.
Some networks will offer the Doro 8050 on contract or customers should expect to pay around £130 for the device outright.
4. TTfone Lunar TT750
TTfone offer a range of inexpensive handsets aimed at older people and those with limited vision. It retails for around £40, meaning it’s the cheapest phone on this list.
The TTfone Lunar TT750 is a simple phone hidden behind a complicated device name, and it’s another clamshell device that will fit easily into a user’s life. It also comes with a desktop cradle for straightforward charging, plus it incorporates other accessibility features such as loud speaker volume, large font sizes and a programmable SOS button.
One important thing to note about the TTfone Lunar TT750 is that it isn’t a smartphone, so it’s only suitable for customers who just need to stay in touch via phone and text. In addition, the device can’t be used on the Three mobile network or networks like iD Mobile who use Three’s infrastructure.
5. moto e7i power
The moto e7i power isn’t marketed specifically at older customers, so it isn’t necessary suitable for users who lack confidence with smartphones.
However, the moto e7i power is a straightforward smartphone with some handy features such as its dedicated Google Assistant button on the side of the device and its water repellent design. It also comes with over 40 hours battery life, longer than many smartphones offer.
At around £80, the moto e7i power is an entry-level smartphone that’s perfect for older users who are a little more tech-savvy but still want something simple.
I hope this has been helpful for any of you who may be assisting older relatives and friends in navigating the mobile world, here’s to hopefully a safe and secure environment for our loved ones.
Post in collaboration.