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Cell Phones for Seniors - 2022 Senior Phone Buying Guide for the US

Senior phones are popular small pocket-sized phones with 4G compatibility and multiple features at a much lower price.

The "older" cellphone models we know today were highly popular among all age groups back in the day. The plethora of different designs gave people countless options, and there was an abundance of models for every style. However, it wasn't long after when the demand for these phones plummeted as smartphones quickly took over the market. 

The good news, however, is that they’re making a comeback. Anyone who misses the good old days can get their hands on these old models again. There modern versions of these “older” phones are loaded with new specs and can support 4G, although they still serve as basic phones and are mainly used for calling and texting. They’re a great choice for people who want a minimalist phone experience with the feel of the earlier phone models. They’re also a great relief for people who want to take a break from their smartphones.

How to Make a Smartphone Senior Friendly

Smartphones can be made senior-friendly by making some fundamental changes. The following are some primary changes that can be made:

User Interface

Many seniors find it difficult to use modern smartphones. The sheer number of apps can confuse older people. They can get “lost” with all the app icons, while some of them won’t be able to differentiate between similar-looking icons. A more straightforward, clean and less cluttered interface is needed to make it friendly for seniors.

Handy Design

Smartphones are getting bigger and better. Their screen sizes have almost doubled in recent years. Seniors need more handy phones that can easily fit in their hands. Many smartphones today aren’t as handy and don’t easily fit into their hands. 

Dedicated Screen Icons/Buttons

If you limit the icons on the home screen and give it a familiar design, it will make it easier for seniors to navigate to the apps they need. Most of the apps they use are for communicating (Making calls and sending texts), but they also use GPS and emergency features once in a while. 

Buying Senior phones in 2022 in the U.S. for AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile

Choosing the right senior phone in 2022 can be tough because of the limited features and technical support, so you have to see which features you’ll need most. The first thing you have to do is to check the network’s compatibility and make sure it’s a 4G capable device. While most senior phones still run on 3G, almost all US carriers announced that they’ll be ending 3G support by the end of this year.

All carriers are currently expanding their 5G networks, increasing the number of nodes and adding more locations to their network. However, the primary and most commonly used technology is still 4G. It's much faster than 3G and provides enough support to meet all the demands required.

AT&T has already started shifting their network to 5G. By February of this year, they’ll end their support for 3G devices. Verizon will also end its support for 3G devices by December. T-Mobile also plans to shut down its 3G services by the end of this year.

This means senior phones running on 3G won't be able to operate or make any emergency SOS calls, such as calls to 911, life support and location services. If you’re getting a device for a senior, make sure you choose one that’s 4G capable. 

What are Senior Phones?

To start, let's establish what senior phones are. They’re basically “old-school” phones that were popular back in the day. They have a minimal and simplistic design, but have all the features of a regular phone. They provide basic communication through phone calls and text messaging, they’re small and easy to carry around, and their compact design and simplicity make them appealing to older people.

Unlike smartphones, they have physical touch buttons and much smaller screens. They have much higher talk and standby times, and their batteries are able to last much longer because they run less apps and have smaller screens. 

That’s nothing to worry about though because modern senior phones are well equipped to keep up with the current tech! They support 4G and Wi-Fi, have a dedicated SOS button, a GPS location identifier, hearing aid support, a radio, a camera and a 3.5mm headphone jack. They are the best device for older people, children and people who simply miss the older phone models. 

In summary, their notable features include:

  • Compact size
  • Longer battery life
  • Easy to use physical buttons
  • Dedicated SOS key 
  • 4G Support
  • Reasonable, cheaper price

Who might Prefer Senior phones Over Smartphones?

It pretty much boils down to  the usage and functionality. Modern senior phones are technically sound devices that are smaller and handy. 

1. Older people

These phones are preferred by older people who find them easier to use compared to modern smartphones. Their straightforward interface, less cluttered home screen and physical buttons make them more appealing to them.

2. Parents with children

Parents who want a decent and inexpensive phone for their school-age children. It gives them easy communication and constant updates with their location. It will also be a great first phone for children due to the aesthetic design, easy to use interface and overall simplicity.   

3. Younger Generation

People who are tired of using smartphones or people who want to cut down their screen time. These phones are a great alternative and make good secondary phones

Why do they prefer Senior phones over smartphones?

There are several reasons why people would choose a senior phone over a modern smartphone. For many, it’s simply nostalgia and wanting to stay with the old interface and style. Some find them easier to use, while some just want them around as their secondary phone.

 The most common reasons are:

  • Simple and user-friendly interface
  • Smaller and easier to carry around
  • Less complex than modern smartphones
  • Provide basic connectivity through text and call (Some people don’t need anything else)
  • Significantly cheaper than modern smartphones
  • Physical touch buttons
  • Longer battery life
  • Help people take a break from their smartphones (For those who are addicted to them)

Key differences between senior phones and smartphones: 

The features are what ultimately influence people’s decisions to purchase. Now, with the “average” smartphone constantly improving and getting cheaper at the same time, the competition in the market is at an all-time high. The tipping point for many people usually lies in the feature comparison. 

These are some key features of senior phones that really differentiate them from smartphones:

Speed Dial

The most obvious difference between senior phones and smartphones is the design and form. The minimalist and straightforward features of senior phones make them easy to use. The speed dial feature provides a quick and easy way to dial certain numbers.

Hearing Aid Compatibility

Many older people have age-related hearing loss. To work around this, they’ll need louder volume to hear incoming calls and texts. Phones with M4/T4 hearing capabilities are a great choice for seniors.

Loud Speaker

Loud speakers are quite helpful because they can alert older people with hearing problems of incoming calls and texts. They’re also good for seniors who want to use their phones to listen to the radio. 

Dedicated SOS button

In case of an emergency, a dedicated SOS button can be life-saving to older people. It is one of the most necessary features for a senior phone. Modern smartphones provide an SOS service as well, but a direct physical button is more convenient.

Physical Buttons

Physical buttons are more user friendly and easier to use. Seniors prefer them over touch screens.

Pros and Cons of Using Senior Phones

While there are certainly many upsides to senior phones, like all things, they also come with a few downsides. Here’s a quick summary of the pros and cons:


  • They serve the primary purpose of connectivity and are less complex than smartphones.
  • They have physical buttons that are easier for children and older people to use.
  • They are compatible with 4G networks.
  • Modern models have Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and a 3.5 mm audio jack.
  • They’re cheaper than smartphones.
  • They have longer battery life.
  • They’re much easier to repair and maintain.
  • They have dedicated buttons in case of an emergency.


  • They’re not as visually appealing due to smaller screens with less resolution.
  • It takes more time to type on physical buttons than to type on touch screens.
  • They have limited availability and fewer models.
  • They have slower processing, fewer storage options and more limited specs.

Important Considering Factors before Buying Senior phones

If you’re planning to get a senior phone, there are several things you need to consider first. These models are in limited supply, so make sure you get one that offers all the necessities to keep up with the current technology. Avoid choosing any phone with obsolete technology, as it wouldn’t be useful. 

The following are important features you need to check: 

U.S. Warranty

Make sure you pick one that provides a US warranty. There is an international warranty associated with different models most of the time, but choosing models with a US warranty ensures the long-term reliability of the phone.

Carrier Support

Manufacturers normally make their models for all markets. However, they’re not always supported by certain carriers in specific regions due to their limited availability. You have to make sure that the phone you’re getting is supported by your local carrier and network. 

4G Network

US carriers are ending their support for older 3G networks. They will shift completely to 4G or higher networks by the end of this year. You’ll therefore need to get a senior phone that supports 4G out of the box, otherwise your mobile phone will be useless. 

4G also has a better ability to support clear crystal voice and other internet calling options.

GPS Support

GPS support is definitely a must-have feature for your children or older family members. It will keep you updated with their locations and will come in very handy in emergency situations. 

Charging Method

It’s way more convenient for seniors to charge their phones by putting it on a dock charger instead of having to plug it in with a standard charger. If you want a phone that’s easy to charge, choose one that comes with a dock charger. 


The apps are the most critical factor when choosing a senior phone, especially communication apps. Having more than one communication app provides more options and makes communication easier. If your carrier’s coverage is not so good, you can call or text through Wi-Fi.

The Best Senior Phone to Buy

It all boils down to one question: Which is the best model for me? Well, we did the research and summarized everything you need to know into a few key points. After this, we hope you’ll have a pretty good idea of which model suits you best. 

The following are our top picks for senior phones:

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The VoicePing P-one is a well-rounded candy bar style phone. It has all the necessary features to keep up with the current technologies, and no list in this category would be complete without it. With features like Android OS, carrier compatibility, expandable storage, a camera, and a dedicated SOS button, this model is certainly one of the stronger contenders in this category. Moreover, its small compact design makes it pretty handy and easy to hold. 

Some of its notable features include:

  • Android OS: For excellent connectivity and popular communication apps like Skype, WhatsApp, and Zoom. You can also install any other apps.
  • AT&T and T-Mobile Compatibility: It supports AT&T and T-Mobile networks and provides out-of-the-box connectivity.
  • Processor: It comes with a 1.5 GHz quad-core processor with 1 GB of RAM.
  • Storage: It has built-in storage space of 8 GB and can support up to 128 GB via SD card.
  • Camera: Its 8 MP camera is perfect for video calls and taking pictures.
  • GPS Enabled: It comes with GPS as a standard feature, making it a strong contender for children's phones.
  • Wi-Fi and 4G LTE: It’s one of the few equipped with Wi-Fi and 4G LTE technology.
  • Physical Buttons: It has a T9 button keyboard that is simple and provides all necessary functionality.
  • SOS Button: It has a separate SOS button for emergencies.
  • Warranty: It comes with a one year warranty.

P-one’s senior-centric features:

  • Hearing aid capability
  • Highly durable with IP54 ratings.
  • Bluetooth enabled to provide more calling options.
  • 3.5mm audio jack for plugging headphones.

This is a great choice if you are not fond of flip phones and prefer the candy bar design. It has all the features you would need, and is an excellent model for both seniors and children.

Some Other Latest and Best Senior Phones That You Would Like To Buy in 2022:

These are some other models currently available in the market that would make great senior phones. 

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The Jitterbug flip 2 is a flip phone with a sleek design. Its display and physical button keypad are both slightly larger than average. Its main features are its LED and Android OS support. It runs on Android, which allows you to install apps from the play store. 

Some of its notable features include:

  • Technology: Supports 4G
  • Screen Size: 3.2 inch screen, 480x320 pixel ratios
  • Rear Camera: 8 MP rear camera, 5 MP front camera
  • Battery Life: 12 hours of talk time
  • Storage: 16 GB
  • Dimensions: 4.3 x 2.19 x 0.75 inches
  • Weight: 134 grams
  • Price: Approximately 100 dollars
  • Works on: AT&T
  • OS: Android 

Some of its other features include: the M4/T4 hearing aid compatibility, Bluetooth, a 3.5 mm headphone jack and a dock charger. It also has Alexa pre-installed for more accessible voice controls and a dedicated button for emergency medical assistance.

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It has a large touch screen panel and a user-friendly interface. It can make voice or video calls and has a dedicated emergency medical assistance button.

Some of its notable features include:

  • Technology: Supports 4G
  • Screen Size: 6.22 inch screen and has 19:9 aspect ratios.
  • Rear Camera: 13 MP rear camera, 5 MP front camera.
  • Battery Life: 22 hours of talk time
  • Storage: 32 GB, but expandable up to 256
  • Dimensions: 5.98 x 3.03 x 0.33 inches
  • Weight: 159 grams
  • Price: Approximately 150 dollars.
  • Works on: AT&T
  • OS: Android 

It has the M4/T4 hearing aid compatibility, Bluetooth, GPS, a 3.5 mm headphone jack and the USB-C charging port connected to a wall charger. It's primarily a smartphone, but has a unique interface design for seniors.

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The Alcatel GO FLIP 4044 4G LTE is a 4G flip phone with dual screens, one outside smaller notification screen and a 2.8 inch inner screen for performing other functions. It falls under the basic flip phones with options like web browsing, call connectivity and emails on 4G LTE.

Some of its notable features include:

  • Technology: Supports 4G
  • Screen Size: 2.8 inch screen, 240x320 pixel ratios.
  • Rear Camera: 2 MP
  • Battery Life: 12 hours of talk time.
  • Storage: 4GB, but expandable with SD card
  • Dimensions: 4.13 x 2.09 x 0.79 inches
  • Weight: 118 grams.
  • Price: Approximately 90 dollars
  • Works on: AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint
  • OS: Kai OS

Its other features include: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, Radio and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. It comes with a Micro USB connector and is ideal for people who would enjoy a flip phone with minimalist features.

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The AT&T Cingular Flip 4 is suitable for seniors and younger people who like the aesthetics of the old phone models, but with modern features. It has YouTube on the go and Google Maps for navigation. 

Some of its notable features include:

  • Technology: Supports 4G
  • Screen Size: 2.8 inch screen, 240x320 pixel ratios
  • Rear Camera: 2 MP
  • Battery Life: 5.5 hours of talk time, 18.8 hours of standby time.
  • Storage: 4 GB, but expandable up to 32 GB with an SD card 
  • Dimensions: 4.61 x 2.99 x 2.17 inches
  • Weight: 118 grams
  • Price: Approximately 63 dollars
  • Works on: AT&T
  • OS: Kai OS

This model is a compact and slim flip phone with dual screens. It has a large keypad for easy navigation, long lasting battery and a mobile hotspot capability for up to ten devices. It also has an FM radio, a 3.5mm headphone jack, M4/T4 hearing aid ratings and a micro USB connector.

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Easy one Prime-A7 4G is a candy bar style phone with a square design. Its simple keypad and small screen reflect the typical dumbphone look. Iits 4G compatibility and dock charging make it an ideal model for seniors.

Some of its notable features include:

  • Technology: Supports 4G
  • Screen Size: 2 inch HD IPS screen
  • Rear Camera: 0.3 MP 
  • Battery Life: 7 hours of talk time, 96 hours of standby time
  • Storage: It can store up to 500 contacts, but is expandable with an SD up to 32 GB
  • Dimensions: 4.56 x 2.22 x 0.55 inches
  • Weight: 91 grams
  • Price: Approximately 60 dollars.
  • Works on: T-Mobile
  • OS: Nucleus OS 

Its other features include: Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth, FM radio, a 3.5 mm headphone jack and a USB connector with a dock charger. Its keypad has a dedicated SOS button and it supports M4/T4 hearing aid capability.


The design, size and features of senior phones make them the best choice for older people. They offer great value for money with their minimalistic user interface and modern technology. The key features that make them ideal for older people are: the 4G compatibility, SOS ability, loud speaker, durability, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, Radio, 3.5 mm headphone jack, battery life and dock charging.