As we get older we all want to have a sense of autonomy. Part of that autonomy as we're getting older is the need to have a cell phone as none of us want to feel like we have to give up our freedoms. I know that I'll want my parents to be able to do so as long as possible and that's why I made sure I bought and taught my senior parents how to use a cell phone.
The problem with living on their own is the fact that if an accident happens the senior must have an outlet. When it comes down to it you should make sure that the senior in your life purchase a cell phone or you purchase one for them. The fact of the matter is purchasing a cell phone for a senior is a lot different than if you were purchasing one for a teenager. The reason for this is that both the needs and the requirements are different. The following will talk about how to purchase not just a cell phone, but the right cell phone for the senior in your life.
Thinking about Beneficial Features
You're the one that's going to know the senior better than anyone else so you'll know the features that they may or may not want. For the most part the senior is going to want 100% no frills. Other seniors are going to want to be able to get picture messages of the grandkids. This is going to be for the more non technophobic senior and you'll know if the senior you're purchasing the cell phone for is going to fit that mold or not. Predominately you're likely to find that the seniors are more technophobic and will want a cell phone with extremely easy options complete as a no frills package.
Regardless of if you're looking for any additional features or not you'll want to make sure that the cell phone you're purchasing has large buttons. A simple fact of getting older is the eyesight is always one of the things to go and that's where the large buttons are going to come into play making sure that the phone buttons can be read clearly.
Hearing and the Dial Tone
If there are hearing aids that the senior you're purchasing for utilizes then you'll need to make sure that the phone you're purchasing is a compatible model. Due to the fact that this is a more specialized necessity there isn't going to be as wide of a selection of phones. Even with that fact there are still plenty of carriers that will have the phones that will accommodate what you'll need through their current phone selection.
There is another consideration and that is making the cell phone as real as possible through the use of a dial tone. This will make it as close to a landline experience as possible. Traditionally though you don't have the dial tone on cell phones though and in order to make sure that some seniors know that the phone is working then you'll need to find a phone which will offer the dial tone feature.
Prepaid and Other Plan Options
You should make a consideration to both a prepaid cell phone and also potentially getting a small plan or adding a line to your current plan. The key though is to make sure that they have a phone which is going to make sure that they have the ability to be able to make a call and should there be an emergency there is going to be the phone outlet. The emergency outlet only is going to be a good instance where the prepaid phone is going to come in handy and probably be the best route. If the senior that you're purchasing for is going to want to use the phone a little more often and want to use some additional features like text or picture messaging than you're going to want to look into a basic plan. Another possibility other than that would be to add a line to your current plan. You can usually do that for around $10 a month with most carriers and they'll just use your minutes and you should have the option of free mobile to mobile on everything. This is going to save a lot of money and give them the outlet not just for an emergency, but to communicate with you and also receive some picture texts of the grandkids if they are a little more tech savvy. With most of the prepaid plans you're not going to have this option so this is where the regular plan is going to influence your decision. You're the one that knows the senior you're purchasing for more than and also better than anyone else so you'll be able to take everything into account and be able to make the best decision on the route to take.
There is one final thing that should be discussed and it is just as if not more important than the rest. That is to ensure that the phone that you're getting is simple enough for understanding while still allowing for them to have everything that they want and everything that they need. Finally, when it comes to a senior there are three different S's for you to keep in your mind when making your decisions. Simple enough for the senior to understand, simple enough for the senior to use and simple enough to contact emergency personnel quickly if something comes up.
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