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Low cost smartphone options?
Old 07-04-2018, 05:00 PM   #1
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Low cost smartphone options?

I help out a neighbor. She's mid-80's, lives alone (her DH is in a memory care unit) and isn't technically proficient. She recently got a flip type cell phone, but struggles with the functionality, because the user interface is not intuitive.

It's possible a smart phone might be a better idea for her, because the interface is simpler and more straightforward. My knowledge of smartphones is limited to Apple, which is more than she needs or wants to pay.

Is there a lower cost (less than $200) phone that folks here recommend? Her network is Consumer Cellular.
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Old 07-04-2018, 05:13 PM   #2
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Michael, the DW and I have had good luck with the Motorola Moto G series. Currently we have the G5 Plus, about $225 on Amazon. You can probably find it for less or the 4 series, $160 . The Moto G is routinely rated as one of the best budget android phones. But, I would have thought she might do better with a flip phone with buttons.

Edit to add: It looks like Consumer Cellular offers the G5 Plus for $200
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Old 07-04-2018, 05:16 PM   #3
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Their should be several lower cost phones to choose from is she goes with android.

I'm on Consumer Cellular too and start from the cheaper smart phones first. Outgrew the cheapest so now on the next.

https://www.consumercellular.com/Products?android
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Old 07-04-2018, 05:27 PM   #4
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But, I would have thought she might do better with a flip phone with buttons.
Her problem with the buttons is the same key may have more than one function, depending on what function screen is active. Even getting into the function screens is a challenge for her. So, basic things, like speakerphone and voicemail, are a challenge.

The smartphone interface is much simpler from that perspective.
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Old 07-04-2018, 05:28 PM   #5
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There are also phones for the elderly with huge buttons.

My mother is in her 80s and she's using iPhone, strictly for phone.

We put in apps. but she never uses them.

She likes to swipe to delete calls and voice mails though.

Main benefit is we can use GPS to track where the phone is.
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Old 07-04-2018, 05:43 PM   #6
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The iPhone is a great option, just too expensive.
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Old 07-04-2018, 05:43 PM   #7
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I can’t find it on AARP anymore but there was a ad for a very simple phone that’s functions mirrored a house landline phone. Really stripped down to the most basic features
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Old 07-04-2018, 05:45 PM   #8
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I canít find it on AARP anymore but there was a ad for a very simple phone thatís functions mirrored a house landline phone. Really stripped down to the most basic features
That would be the Jitterbug.

Designed specifically for tech-averse older folks.
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Old 07-04-2018, 06:17 PM   #9
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Good tips, thanks. The Jitterbug also has a smartphone. Something to look into. The Moto E4 looks like a good option. $125 from Consumer Cell - this is her price range.
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Old 07-04-2018, 06:17 PM   #10
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The iPhone is a great option, just too expensive.
Maybe an older model, say iPhone 6S?

Otherwise, Jitterbug may be better but are you limited in which service you can use them on?

Also would be useful to have GPS to track them.
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Old 07-04-2018, 06:17 PM   #11
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My MIL, who turned 90 a few months ago, has this one:

https://www.amazon.com/Jitterbug-Sma.../dp/B01DRV2AV0

To be honest, she can barely use it. She can answer a call, and in an emergency, she can make a call to a contact that's preloaded into the phone. She cannot retrieve and play a voice message and she will never use any of the other features, although she's not tech phobic and uses a computer for some things. She just has no interest in using a phone for anything other making or receiving a phone call.
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Old 07-04-2018, 06:25 PM   #12
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Had same problem with my elder Mother. Simple flip phone. She could not hit the keys.

And had trouble turning the phone on/off. I think it is just an age thing. If you never

had a cellular phone when younger. Or used a laptop. It is much more difficult to learn

later in life. Sorry no solution. In our case, Mother just uses the land line telephone.
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Old 07-04-2018, 06:29 PM   #13
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My MIL, who turned 90 a few months ago, has this one:

https://www.amazon.com/Jitterbug-Sma.../dp/B01DRV2AV0

To be honest, she can barely use it. She can answer a call, and in an emergency, she can make a call to a contact that's preloaded into the phone. She cannot retrieve and play a voice message and she will never use any of the other features, although she's not tech phobic and uses a computer for some things. She just has no interest in using a phone for anything other making or receiving a phone call.
Best to read the Amazon negative reviews on this phone. There are tons of them.
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Old 07-04-2018, 07:02 PM   #14
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Hmm, Brain games.

I've loaded some puzzles but she prefers Sudoku or some other simple games.
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Old 07-04-2018, 08:23 PM   #15
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My wife has an old iPhone 4 that she loves and won't part with. Does phone, email and text just fine and is small and easy to use and you can pick a used one now pretty cheap.
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Old 07-04-2018, 08:57 PM   #16
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Craigslist is your friend. Plenty of early adopters out there selling very capable phones for half price or less. We have Nexus 5x phones which I think are now going in the $100-150 range. One was an LNIB factory refurb still sealed.
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Old 07-04-2018, 09:02 PM   #17
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Quote:
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Good tips, thanks. The Jitterbug also has a smartphone. Something to look into. The Moto E4 looks like a good option. $125 from Consumer Cell - this is her price range.
DW and I each have Moto G4s and like them.
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Old 07-04-2018, 09:06 PM   #18
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I also have a Moto G4 and have been really happy with it.
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Old 07-04-2018, 09:13 PM   #19
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I realize you are asking about cell phones, however if the need ever arises we got this phone for my mom, who struggles with dementia, and the ability to add pictures of the family on this phone helped her for a little while anyway. All she had to do was touch the picture of who she wanted and the buttons are set up with speed dials. Although it can get to be a nuisance as well if they use it every time they have a question.

https://www.mindcarestore.com/memory...iABEgJHK_D_BwE
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Old 07-05-2018, 06:11 AM   #20
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I don't know if you have the option in US, but there are some good inexpensive Chinese brands. I have to warn that it can get risky some times.

The one I am trying right now is Xiaomi. I know quite a few people that are using it as well and seem satisfied by what they have gotten at a low price. There are different options ones with the MIUI (which is a customized Android), but also some with Android One. The important thing in this case is to check that both the phone is global version and the plug is US version.

As a side note, I think that most Android phones have an accessibility option that can be turned on to simplify the menus.
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