A senior cell phone for Christmas could be the perfect gift for one of your parents or a family friend this year.
If you are like me, figuring out what you’re going to get your mom, dad or senior friend for Christmas can be tough. They either have or don’t need most of the things I think of. Good, thoughtful gift ideas are sometimes hard to come by.
I’m not the only one thinking this way, either. According to a Pew Internet study this year, nearly 40% of cellphone owners 55 to 64 have smartphones and 18% in the 65+ age group. Both groups are growing fast.
Cell phones can be good gifts
Many people I’ve talked with about this idea aren’t sure whether their parents would even want a cellphone… much less a “senior cell phone“. They’re afraid of how they might react getting something that’s labeled that way. But, I think there are a few really good reasons why it is a good gift choice.
Obviously, the first thing people think about with senior cell phones are the panic buttons for emergencies. It’s true; panic buttons are a good idea. The older you get, the more likely you are to fall or have a medical emergency. So, having a single button to push in order to get help can bring some peace of mind … especially for the adult kids.
Something I’ve been hearing more about are grandparents that use their cell phones to keep in contact with their grandchildren. Sounds crazy, I know. But, I know several grandmas that text their grandkids every day. Even better, is being able to text photos. Grandparents love to get photos. Your kids will talk to their grandparents more, too. Even if it is with texting. It’s a win-win situation.
Then, there are the smart phones
Smart phones bring on a whole new experience. With apps that you can download to the phone, you can simplify the phone’s interface and make it easier to use. The over 65 group has really taken to surfing the web on their phones, as well as finding local businesses and information.
And, speaking of apps, there are tons of apps out there that can help seniors stay sharp mentally and help them do the things they want to do, such as organizing information, keeping in touch with friends, GPS for driving, managing their health, coupon clipping and much more.
Senior cell phone choices
If you’re thinking about giving a senior cell phone for Christmas, here’s a couple to choose from. For basic use, the Jitterbug Plus, Snapfon or Just5. All of them have basic emergency features, large screens that are easy-to-read and larger buttons. Also, the interface to use the phones are simplified.
If you’re thinking about a smart phone, the new Jitterbug Touch or Pantech Flex might be good. Of course, with so many apps available to make using the phone easier, you could get any one of the major smartphones out there with either the Apple or Android operating system. With the new Samsung Easy Mode functionality, the Galaxy S4 or Galaxy Note II might be just the right thing.
Cell phone plans
Of course, the cell phone plan monthly cost should always be considered. Most of the major carriers have plans for seniors, and there are many pay-as-you-go options available. Most major smart phones can be used with any carrier. The best advice is to shop around for rates and options before you make a purchase.