Monday, November 28, 2011

Features that Make Cell Phones Accessible for Seniors

What makes a mobile phone suitable for user who is already 65 years or older? How can you tell if a cell phone will be a good fit for the needs of an elderly person? These are tow of the most common questions asked by people who are looking to purchase a phone for senior citizens.

But what are the answer to these questions? Well, let me give a few features that one should look at when shopping for a cell phone for a senior.

Large Buttons on a Spacious Keypad: a phone should have buttons that are easy to press and highly visible to users who might have weak eyes. There should by good separation between the buttons so that users can dial or compose messages by feel. One should also examine the backlighting of the buttons and see if the labels on the buttons are large enough to be read by elderly users.

Material used for Design: Senior citizens do not have the strongest of grips so a slippery phone will not be ideal. Look carefully at a phone that you are planning to buy and hold it in your hand. It should be comfortable to hold and come with a non-slip grip so that a senior-user will not drop it easily.

Adjustable Screen brightness and Fonts: Since most seniors have less than perfect eyesight, a buyer should pay attention to the display. It should be bright enough to illuminate the information on the screen. It should also have adjustable fonts so users can alter its size to fit their vision. A phone with a small display can still be good for seniors as long as its fonts are big enough to serve users with weak eyesight.

Presence of a Lanyard Pin: Some accessories that aid senior users may require a lanyard pin. For instance, straps and lanyard can allow users to use the phone without holding them. These accessories are useful for users who use canes or walking sticks.

Simple Overall Design: Arguing about the best design for senior users would be a waste of space. Instead, I'll just describe the attributes that one should look for when finding a phone for senior citizens. A phone should have a simple design that does not require complex movements when answering a call. A device with functions that require inching, twisting or rotation of the wrist may not be suited to seniors who have fragile joints.

That's it for the features that make a mobile phone accessible for elderly users. We hope that this information will help you as you search for a good handset for seniors.

Stay tuned for more articles, updates, news and other posts that are related to cell phones for the elderly.

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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Just5 Cell Phone for The Elderly Tutorial Videos

I have written a lot of blog post for the last few years in an effort to contribute to seniors mobile phone users. In this endeavour, I most often rely on words to convey and share information on mobile phone for seniors. However, I realize that videos can also be a good tool for this blog.

Videos are not being used in the internet as a form of expression or advertisements. But videos can also be used for education and this post will illustrate this point. For this post, I will feature a couple of videos that provide information on the Just5 mobile phone for seniors.

This handset is just on e of the many options available for the elderly on today's mobile phone market. It's a device that integrates "ease of operation, big buttons, amplified sound, a long-lasting battery for reliability, and an emergency SOS button" into its design. Here are a couple of videos that feature this phone for the elderly.

Just5 easy phone introduction video:

This clip highlights the best features of this phone including the emergency response system or SOS button, the large buttons, large display fonts, speaking keypad, simple menu, built-in flashlight, and FM radio.

How to use the Just5 Easy cell phone:

This video provides a quick tour of the simple functions of the phone including unlocking the handset, enabling the flash light, adjusting the volume, using the SOS button, making a call, saving contacts, and digital dial readout.

Here are a few pictures of the Just5 handset in case you want a closer look as its senior-friendly design:

That's it for these tutorial videos of a mobile phone for seniors. If you want more videos, then don't worry. We will be posting how to videos and tutorial clips of other cell phones for those who ware 65 years or older.

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Monday, November 21, 2011

The Emporia RL1 Big-Buttoned Phone for Seniors

It's been awhile since we featured a senior phone from Emporia. This manufacturer is best known for creating the Life phone, which is one of the top cell phones for the elderly. This time we will look at the RL1, a phone that follows in the wake of other senior-friendly phones form Emporia.

The Emporia RL1 is a good mobile phone for seniors because it's a device that has been designed with simplicity and usability in mind. It was built to be a phone for users who mostly want to talk and text with their phones. But that's a general description. Let's go over the facts and figures that makes this handset a good device for the elderly.

Let's begin with the display. The RL1 sports a 1.8 OLED display with 160 x 128 pixels. It's not a Retina display but it gets the job done for folks with weak eyesight. The screen has high contrast so users will easily read the information depicted on the display.

Now let's look at the body of this phone. This mobile phone for seniors comes with a light plastic body with big, chunky buttons. The buttons may look ugly but they are designed to be large so that seniors and other users can dial or compose a text message with ease. The numbers and letters printed on each button are larger than your average phone. This was intended to aid users who may have difficulty seeing small text.

The simplicity of the handset extends to its menu interface. Users will find that it has a minimalistic user interface that allows them to easily navigate the features. They can easily access the phone book, and dialer should they wish to contact a friend or family member.

The Emporia RL1 also comes with a few extra features such as the torch button which activates the bright LED flashlight on the top. It also offers a calculator, a birthday reminder, and a battery that only needs to be charged after several days.

Here are a few videos that feature the Emporia RL1:

That's it for this post. Follow use regularly for more post on mobile phones for senior citizens.

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

TTY-compatible Cell Phones for Seniors

Hello everyone! I hope that those of you who have been following this blog are having a great week. For the last feature for this week, we will look at a cell phone feature that can serve the needs of seniors and those who have speech and hearing disabilities. It's a feature called TTY or Text Telephone / Teletype Terminal / TeleTYpewriter.

So what is it? TTY is a technology that is designed to cater to the needs of people who are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech-impaired. It allows users to use a cell phone to communicate by enabling them to type text messages.

Now, here's an interesting question. Why is it different from text messaging? Well, TTY is more like text version of a phone call. It's a form of synchronous communication through text.

So how does it work? How can a senior use a TTY-compatible cell phone?

First one needs to connect the handset with a TTY-machine. This is usually done via a headset jack. The TTY machine will then connects to a relay service, which converts incoming speech to text for the person using the TTY. The relay service will then convert the outgoing text from the TTY machine to a spoken voice for the person on the other end of the conversation.

Here are a video that illustrates how it works:

Here here are links to TTY-Compatible cell phones that can help seniors who are hard of hearing:

We hope that this post can help the elderly and folks who are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech-impaired. Stay tuned as we feature more cell phones for seniors and related topics.

Image Credit: United TTY

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Monday, November 14, 2011

The Simple and Affordable LG1500 from Net10

Let's look at our second phone from Net10, a company that offers prepaid cell phones and services. We featured the LG100C last August so it's about time that we blog about another phone from the same prepaid company. For this post, we will look at the LG1500.

One look at the LG1500 will tell you that it's not a recently released phone. It sports a blocky flip design and it even comes with an external antenna! This simple handsets hails from 2004 when mobile phones were designed primarily to make calls. Most of today's users will probably not give this device a second look but it can still be of value to some folks.

The elderly will be a good fit for the LG1500 because it fulfills two of their most important needs. This Net10 phone is affordable with a prepaid price of $30.00 and it's an easy-to-use phone. Let's delve deeper and look at the factors that make this device a suitable phone for senior citizens.

This handset sports an internal display that measures 1.6 inches diagonally. Yeah, it's pretty small but it comes from a time when large displays were uncommon. Luckily it has 65,000-color support and bright so it's decent. But the font size is not adjustable, which would have great for seniors with weak eyesight.

The display may not be very impressive but the keypad is quite senior-friendly. The keypad's design is clean, simple, and straightforward so even inexperienced senior cell phone users will find it easy to dial.

the simple design of the LG1500 also ensured of great performance when making calls. The external antenna resulted in solid call quality. The sound is clear and the volume is loud. The recipients of our calls have very little complaints when we tested the device.

Here's a list of the features for this cell phone for seniors from Net10:
  • MP3 ringtone support
  • speakerphone
  • external caller ID
  • WAP 2.0 with one-touch access button
  • 830 mAh Li-Ion battery

An here's a video for the folks who want to see this phone in action:

That's it for this senior mobile phone. Check this blog every week if yopu want to see more post one all things mobile phone for the elderly.

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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Cheap Doro PhoneEasy 410 from Consumer Cellular

Consumer Cellular is one of the carriers that offers a special program for senior citizens. This company has allotted phones and deals that specifically target the needs of the elderly. This Consumer Cellular phone for seniors was introduced two years ago and still remains as one of the best options for folks who are 65 years or older. Let's look at the simple and easy-to-use Doro PhoneEasy 410.

Sine the PhoneEasy 410 is a phone that is being offered to seniors it comes with a price that is friendly with most budgets. Consumers can get this phone for $25.00 after instant rebate plus a $35.00 activation fee. This offer does not come with a contract so it provides flexibility and allows consumers to avoid irritating fees and credit checks.

Now, let's look at the features that makes the Doro PhoneEasy 410 a good mobile phone for senior citizens. Let's start with the design.

The handset sports a flip design with an easy-to-read color display with large text so its suitable for users with weak eyesight. It measures 2-inches with 176x220-pixel support. You can't alter the size of the font but there's really no need to since it's large enough even for users who are partially sighted.

The keypad for this phone is also designed for seniors. The spacious keypad comes with soft-touch buttons with rubbery feel. One will find it easy to dial by feel because the number keypad some large digits, and the keys are raised above the surface.

There are other senior friendly qualities that combine well with the phone's practical design. For instance, there is plenty of volume and very little static or background noise when making calls so it scores high marks for performance. It's also it’s Hearing Aid Compatible (T3/M3) so it's a good choice for seniors who are hard of hearing.

The phone also comes with an emergency feature that allows the users to quickly alert friends or family members in case of any unfortunate eventualities. I feel that this feature should be on every cell phone for senior citizens.

That's it for this post. Stay with us every week for more mobile phones for the elderly and other related topics.

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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Should the Latest Hearing Aid Standards be Put in Cell Phones?

A great number of seniors are using hearing aids so I felt this issue is worthy of being posted in this blog on cell phones for the elderly. Recently, the Federal Communications Commission proposed that the latest hearing aid standards should be included in mobile phones as soon as possible.

Do you agree with this proposal? Before you answer that, let's take a closer look at this proposal.

The FCC wants cell phones to have the latest standards developed by ANSI (American National Standards Institute) for hearing-aid compatibility (HAC).

The handset's with hearing-aid compatibility that are currently in the market use a standard that was developed in 2007. This standard is compatible with devices in the 800MHz to 950MHz, and 1.6GHz to 2.5GHz spectrum bands. However, this year's proposal wants to include the 700MHz band. Other frequencies that are used in modern phones to support 4G and other wireless technologies are also included in the proposal.

Apparently, the new hearing-aid compatibility (HAC) standards is designed to ensure that consumers will not experience undue radio frequency interference with devices such as hearing aids.

The commission also plans to only grant HAC certification to cell phones that meet the 2011 standard. The FCC also estimates that handset will meet the new standards within one year from the rules being published in the Federal Register.

So what do you think? Well, many senior citizens need phones with hearing-aid compatibility (HAC) so I agree with this proposal. updating the standard to the latest version will only improve cell phones for seniors who are hard of hearing.

That's it for this post. Stay tuned as we look at issues that are related to cell phones for senior citizens. Expect more posts every week from this friendly mobile phones for the elderly blog.

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