Phones for Seniors: 4 Top Picks (and 4 Solid Alternatives)
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As we age, factors such as ease of use and screen size become increasingly important when choosing the best cell phone. However, being of advanced age doesn’t have to mean being behind the times. That’s why our roundup of the best phones for seniors includes top picks for different kinds of users.
Below you’ll find six standout models among today’s most popular flagship phones for tech-savvy seniors who want all the bells and whistles combined with a large screen and large buttons. We’ve also included two simple smartphones for seniors who prioritize ease of use over the latest tech but still want the option to connect to the Internet, take photos on their phones, and hold good old-fashioned conversations.
Here’s the criteria we used to help curate our list of best phones for seniors:
- User-Friendly Design: Simple interfaces and large screens for easy navigation.
- Visibility and Accessibility: Clear displays and large buttons for better readability and dialing. A good speakerphone and magnifier are essential.
- Battery Life: Long-lasting battery to reduce the need for frequent charging.
- Hearing Aid Compatibility: Clear sound for those with hearing aids.
- Safety Features: Emergency buttons and health-related functions like fall detection.
1. Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra
First up on the list is the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, which has plenty of high-tech features for tech-savvy seniors. Its 6.8-inch AMOLED display provides a large, bright screen that’s perfect for video calls with family or browsing social media while being gentle on the eyes. It also has excellent rear camera resolution, enabling it to take sharp pictures of friends and family members. It also comes with Google Assistant and biometric features, so seniors can use their fingerprints to unlock their phones.
Why We Chose This Phone
Seniors looking for a modern, advanced phone will find the Galaxy S24 Ultra right up their alley thanks to its ease of use and accessibility features, making it one of the best smartphones for seniors. Its intuitive Android interface is user-friendly, even for those new to smartphones.
The large touchscreen and hearing aid compatibility ensure a seamless experience for phone calls and text messages. The phone’s 5000mAh battery offers a long-lasting charge of up to 30 hours, providing peace of mind for seniors and their caregivers.
As a senior cell phone, the Galaxy S24’s safety features, like emergency services notifications and fall detection, are a major plus. It works well with major carriers like Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, allowing you to pick a cell phone plan that suits your needs. It's also equipped with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, making connecting to medical alert systems and other essential devices a breeze.
- Large, bright screen with easy-to-navigate touchscreen interface
- Biometric fingerprint ID functionality
- Compatible with hearing aids for clear audio during calls
- It comes with a 12-month warranty
- Advanced safety features, including emergency service access
- Google Assistant functionality
- Good camera quality
- Long-lasting battery ideal for seniors who need reliability
- AI features, like generative edit for photos, live translation for calls, and note assist capabilities
- Highly expensive compared to other basic phones for seniors
- May be complex for seniors used to simple flip phone designs
Backup Option: Samsung Galaxy S23
The Samsung Galaxy S23 is a great alternative for seniors looking to experience favor modern smartphones on a tighter budget. Naturally, there are a few key differences that separate the two phones — the S24 Ultra includes AI features to take better photos, organize notes, and translate live calls, while the S23 Ultra is missing this capability. However, while these features can be useful, they’re not entirely necessary, and might not be missed.
2. iPhone 15 Plus
The iPhone 15 Plus, with its expansive 6.7-inch OLED screen, stands out as a top contender among the best smartphones for seniors. The bright and clear display, coupled with iOS’s intuitive interface, makes it easier for older adults to navigate through apps, send text messages, and have video calls with loved ones. Its Super Retina XDR technology ensures the screen is clear and comfortable for your eyes.
Why We Chose This Phone
Apple’s iPhone 15 Plus is perfectly designed for seniors, offering ease of use without dumbing the phone down for seniors looking for a more advanced phone. The large screen and high resolution make it ideal for reading and viewing content, while the simple iOS interface allows straightforward navigation.
Battery life is another standout feature, offering long-lasting power to ensure daily connectivity. This is important for seniors who rely on their phones for emergency services or medical alerts. The iPhone 15 Plus also supports wireless and MagSafe chargers, simplifying the charging process and making it faster.
The dual-camera system still delivers clear photos and has easy-to-use camera functions, suitable for capturing moments with loved ones. With its Apple 16 Bionic chip, the phone offers smooth performance, ensuring that apps and functionalities run without a hitch.
It’s simple to do the phone activation, too, using Apple’s iCloud to easily transfer from your old phone. Additionally, its emergency services and medical alert notifications provide peace of mind.
This high-quality smartphone combines functionality with senior-friendly features like hearing aid compatibility, powerful speakers, and an easy-to-use touchscreen. Furthermore, the durable design of this phone features cutting-edge Ceramic Shield technology which provides peace of mind for anyone concerned about accidental drops.
- Large, bright screen with easy-to-read display
- Long-lasting battery ideal for extended use and multiple charging options
- User-friendly iOS interface with accessibility features
- High-quality camera for photos and video calls
- Compatibility with hearing aids and emergency services
- Robust build quality with Ceramic Shield
- Higher price point compared to basic phones
- Might be complex if you’re accustomed to simple flip phones or basic models
Backup Option: iPhone 14
The iPhone 14, with its sleek design and advanced features, is an excellent choice for seniors who desire something modern without overwhelming complexity. With a 6.1-inch screen, the iPhone 14 is smaller than the 15 Plus, but it does feature a sharp 2532 x 1170 resolution and Super Retina XDR that makes it incredibly accessible for older adults and still ensures ease of use. Overall, the differences between the two are minimal, making the iPhone 14 an excellent substitute for the 15 Plus.
3. Pixel 8 Pro
The Pixel 8 Pro is a great fit for seniors comfortable with touchscreen technology. With its large 6.7-inch screen, you get a bright, clear display, thanks to its 2992 x 1344 resolution and OLED technology.
This is perfect for seniors who need an easy-to-read screen. Its high refresh rate enhances outdoor visibility, and the durable Corning Gorilla Glass Victus means it can withstand the occasional knock or drop.
Why We Chose This Phone
The Pixel 8 Pro’s user-friendly Android interface and the integration of Google’s advanced technology, like an upgraded camera system and AI assistance for photos, make it a contender for the best smartphone for seniors who enjoy staying connected through their Android phones.
The phone’s large screen and high-quality display ensure ease of use when browsing social media, taking part in video calls with loved ones, or reading text messages. Overall, it’s a great fit for seniors looking for a simple yet smart phone.
- The 5000mAh long-lasting battery is perfect for seniors who don’t want the hassle of frequent charging
- Fast charging and Qi wireless charging options add convenience
- Dual camera setup with a 50-megapixel main camera offers high-quality photos and video recording, a feature that family members might appreciate during shared moments
- In-screen fingerprint biometrics provide enhanced security and ease of access
- The phone’s glass back and aluminum frame give it a premium feel while maintaining durability
- Lack of an urgent response button or dedicated emergency services features
- Some of the advanced functionality might be overwhelming for seniors accustomed to more basic phones or simple flip phones
Backup Option: Pixel 7
The Pixel 7 is an excellent choice for anyone looking to have access to most of the Pixel 8 Pro’s features without the price tag. The differences between the two are fairly negligible — the Pixel 7 has a slightly smaller 6.3-inch screen and a slightly lower resolution of 2400 x 1080 pixels. The only other major differences are a 25% slower refresh rate, 40% lower peak brightness, and no HDR support. But for phone calls, texts, and reading headlines, the Pixel 7 does just fine.
4. Jitterbug Smart3
The Jitterbug Smart3 was specifically designed with seniors in mind. Just like the other options on this list, it allows users to surf the internet, access emails, make video calls, and even play games. The difference is that it includes features to help anyone with dexterity, vision, or hearing challenges. For example, the Jitterbug Smart3 has a 6.2-inch screen, list menus that are easy to read, voice typing capabilities, and compatibility with hearing aids. It’s the perfect “simple” smartphone for seniors who don’t need the latest, most technologically advanced gadget.
- Easy to set up, use, and navigate
- Features specifically designed with seniors in mind
- An affordable price compared to the newest phones
- Optional healthy and safety packages from Lively
- Runs on 4G technology instead of the current and superior 5G
- Overage fees on Jitterbug plans
- Weaker battery (3500mAh) and less storage (32 GB) than other options
Backup Option: Jitterbug Flip2
If you’re looking for something that’s even more basic than the Jitterbug Smart3, then the Jitterbug Flip2 is perfect for you. It’s a flip phone that was designed with seniors in mind or anyone looking for a simple cell phone. The built-in Alexa voice commands allow you to make calls, write texts, and look up information hands-free, but the physical keypad allows for more old-school typing. The biggest downsides are that this phone doesn’t allow for internet browsing, has a screen size of 3.2-inches (it is a flip phone, after all), and only 16 GB of storage. However, if you’re looking for something simple that’s closer to a home phone that you can take out in public, then this is your best bet.
The Bottom Line
Choosing a phone for a senior doesn’t have to be difficult. With our suggestions and Phone Deal Finder, you can ensure that you, or any senior in your life, don’t struggle to keep in contact with family and friends. With any device, it’s best to check for compatibility with various carriers like Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T so you can choose a cell phone plan with great coverage for unlimited talk, text, and data in your area.
You can explore our Mobile Industry Resource hub to learn more about choosing the best phones, data plans, and more.