Best Phones for Seniors
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The 7 Best Cell Phones for Seniors

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Best Phones for Seniors
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Make the Right Call

For senior adults whose vision, hearing, or manual dexterity isn't perfect, cell phones — especially smartphones — can be a challenge to use. Calling a loved one or your doctor doesn't have to be an exercise in frustration, however. A handful of phone companies make handsets that are expressly designed for consumers who need large buttons, a simple display, hearing aid compatibility, or an urgent response button. We've identified the best of them, based on recommendations from professional reviewers and enthusiastic comments from owners. One thing worth noting: All these senior cell phones are compatible only with specific service providers (we've indicated which ones).

Prices and availability are subject to change.

Related: The Best Cell Phone Plans for Seniors: AT&T vs. Verizon vs. T-Mobile

Jitterbug Flip
Best Buy

Jitterbug Flip

Best Basic Flip Phone for GreatCall Customers
Price: $100 from Best Buy 
Buy It
There's a reason why flip phones like the Jitterbug endure in the smartphone era: They're simple to use. In reviews on Amazon, buyers rave about the Flip's large buttons, easy-to-read display, extra-loud speaker, lighted magnifier, and basic controls like one-touch 5Star urgent response calling and other optional health and wellness monitoring services. The editors at PCMag, no slouches when it comes to rigorous testing, name this senior cell phone an Editors' Choice. Many of the positive reviews we read came from people who bought the phone for an aging parent: "For my mother-in-law this phone is perfect. ... I should've ordered this product for her years ago." The Jitterbug Flip is available only with GreatCall, which specializes in cell phone service for seniors.

Jitterbug Smart 2
Best Buy

Jitterbug Smart 2

Best Smartphone for GreatCall Customers
Price: $150 from Best Buy
Buy It
If you do want a smartphone — but don't like how most of them are crammed full of confusing or useless apps — Jitterbug's Smart 2 has the essentials. You'll find a dedicated emergency button; a bright touchscreen; a decent camera; and large list-style icons for email, web browsing, voicemail, and more. In reviews, several users enthusiastically gush about this being their first smartphone purchase. "I've had my old Jitterbug flip phone for some 17 years, and wanted to try something more 'high tech!'" one Best Buy customer writes. "I have had this Smart2 phone less than a month, and am learning a lot." As with the other Jitterbug phone, you're beholden to GreatCall for service, something a few buyers say they were unaware of at the time of purchase.

Doro 7050
Best Buy

Doro 7050

Best Flip Phone for Consumer Cellular or Tracfone Subscribers
Price: $50 from Best Buy
Buy It
If you're looking for a cheap phone that's easy to use and doesn't have a ton of confusing features, the Doro 7050 fills the bill. Its simple interface includes high-contrast raised buttons for easy dialing and texting, a brightly lit display, M4/T4 hearing aid compatibility, and a dedicated "assistance" button that dials a pre-programmed emergency contact. PCMag made it an Editors' Choice for being able to switch between the older 3G service many of these basic phones use and the newer 4G network, noting that it "will have better coverage, for more years, than almost any other flip phone currently on the market." One Best Buy customer noted in a review that the 7050 was exactly what her husband wanted: "The big buttons and easy to see numbers are ideal for older people. Glad there is a phone on the market that is not complicated."

Link
Target

Link

Best No-Frills Flip Phone for Consumer Cellular Customers
Price: $30 from Target
Buy It
This basic flip phone is about as simple as it gets. You can talk and text; it's got Bluetooth, to connect to a headset or hearing aid, and a camera (although admittedly not a great one, at just 2 MP); and it can act as an FM radio. That's about it, apart from a choice of red or black. And that simplicity is its selling point. It's available only on the Consumer Cellular phone network.

Snapfon EZTwo
Amazon

Snapfon EZTwo 3G

Best Basic Cell Phone for Snapfon Customers
Price: $60 from Amazon
Buy It
These brick-like handsets used to be called "candybar" phones because of their chunky, rectangular shape. Their appeal lies in their simplicity — a keypad with large, raised buttons; an oversize emergency alert button; and extra-loud speaker volume — and a form that's easier to grasp than a slender flip phone or slippery smartphone. "This phone is perfect for what it's designed to do: make calls without complications," one satisfied buyer writes in a review on Amazon. The unlocked handset can be used on the AT&T network, but if you buy direct from Snapfon, you can get it for $40 (plus $8 shipping) and choose from a range of prepaid monthly talk-text plans from Snapfon.

Alcatel Go Flip 3
T-Mobile

Alcatel Go Flip 3

Best Flip Phone for T-Mobile Customers
Price: $100 from T-Mobile
Buy It
The Alcatel is a flip phone with just enough web functionality to make it a worthy choice for people who don't need a full-fledged smartphone but wouldn't mind accessing Facebook, chatting on WhatsApp, or using the voice controls of Google Assistant (which comes preloaded). As PCMag's phone expert Sascha Segan writes, "The Go Flip 3 [is] smart enough to make you part of modern society, but simple enough that you don't have to be part of modern society if you don't want to be." Or as one T-Mobile user put it in a lengthy review, "It is a strange hybrid between smartphone and dumb phone [but] ... it is my phone of choice." (The Alcatel Smartflip, available at Cricket Wireless and AT&T, is essentially the same handset by a different name.)

Sonim XP3 Flip Phone
AT&T

Sonim XP3 Flip Phone

Best Flip Phone for AT&T or Sprint Customers
Price: $190 from AT&T
Buy It
The Sonim XP3 has some advantages over the other flip phones we recommend. First, it's got a reinforced external shell, which could come in handy if you're prone to dropping things. Second, it's got a super-loud speaker — 100 dB according to the manufacturer. And there's a "push-to-talk" feature that functions like a walkie-talkie (using it requires an extra-cost service option, however). Little surprise many of the buyers say they use them on construction sites and in warehouses, where such features come in handy. PCMag editors don't mince words: "Sonim's XP3 is the best basic phone on the market ... for anyone who wants a phone that's simple, loud, and reliable." This phone is available with AT&T or Sprint service.

iPhone 11
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What About Apple, Google, and Samsung Smartphones?

Sophisticated cell phones like the iPhone, Galaxy Note, and Pixel offer the power of a personal computer in the palm of your hand, and any one of them makes an excellent smartphone — if that's what you need. Apple, Google, and Samsung smartphones all have usability features like large displays, text magnification, fingerprint ID (so you don't have to remember a password to unlock the phone), and even find-my-phone locators. But they're not designed to be phones first and foremost, nor are they cheap. Prices start at about $600 for a Google Pixel 4 and surpass $1,000 for some iPhone 11 and Galaxy Note 9 models. For these reasons, we did not include these smartphones in our roundup.

Related: 10 Highly Rated Medical Alert Systems for Health and Safety