The best phones for seniors of 2024: Reliable and intuitive designs

Phones designed with seniors in mind: check out these phones that are perfect for peace in mind...

best smartphones for seniors

by Ryan Houghton |
Updated on

Finding the best phones for seniors can be tricky in the world of shiny, cutting-edge smartphones packed with power. But there are hundreds of available phones designed to connect your elderly relatives to you in a simple, streamlined way.

Countless seniors struggle with eye-sight, among issues with motor skills that make daily movement and bodily coordination a difficult task. Our favourite smartphones for seniors, however, are designed to combat poor vision and difficulty typing, making them ideal for elderly family members who might otherwise have trouble contacting you.

The best phones for seniors at a glance:

Best overall: Doro 8100 Plus - View on Amazon
Best budget: Uleway Big Button Mobile Phone - View on Amazon
Best for battery life: Doro 2404 2G - View on Amazon
Best under £30: Artfone C1 - View on Amazon

Adjustable font sizes, voice controls and plenty more: the best smartphones make accessibility easier than ever before, and bundle it up in an affordable package - even the best phones under £300 have some excellent options that are perfect for your older relative.

Whatever your needs, there's a smartphone out there that's perfect for you. We've gathered a list of our favourites, taking into account factors such as affordability, battery life, and design - so we can find the perfect budget smartphone for you. We also factored in individual strengths and weaknesses to ensure we're recommending the best.

How do we test smartphones?

If you're wondering how we test smartphones, we use them for several weeks before writing our reviews. During this time, they usually take the place of our standard phones so that we're able to get a deep understanding of its performance and user experience. We make sure to use all of its features, from taking photos to running games, and even pushing the limits of the battery life.

When it comes time to review, we judge the smartphone on a handful of factors (performance, build, battery, camera and value), and rate each aspect out of five.

Best phones for seniors of 2024:

Please note: All prices are correct at the time of writing. Prices, stock and deals are subject to change without notice.

Best overall

Doro 8100 PlusAmazon/Doro

The Doro 8100 Plus is designed specifically for seniors, with features including clear menus that are easy to navigate, along with hearing aid compatibility. This well-made smartphone allows for quick and easy access to essential features, without the needless confusion of modern smartphone technology.

Built to last, especially since the Doro 8100 Plus comes with a tough wallet case, this phone is bound to endure the drops and falls of everyday life, without any concern of screen breakage. Suppose you're concerned about your senior relative falling or hurting themselves with no one to help. In that case, the Doro 8100 Plus comes equipped with an assistance button, which is perfect in life-threatening situations.

Additional features include a vertical charging stand and the TeamViewer Quick Support app pre-installed. This handy feature allows an invited and trusted contact to access the phone and offer assistance remotely.

The only notable shortcoming of the Doro 8100 Plus is limited memory storage. While 32GB is more than enough to store photos and videos, you'll find that similarly priced smartphones may have better storage, but it's only a small concern.

That being said, for senior smartphone users, the Doro 8100 Plus is perfect for accessibility, with an easy-to-use design and great features for protecting elderly users - it's the perfect phone for under £200.

Pros

  • Very durable
  • Menus are easy to understand and navigate
  • Accessible and well-designed for seniors

Cons

  • Not the largest memory capacity

Best budget

Uleway Big Button Mobile PhoneAmazon/Uleway

Ideal for both budget buyers and for those who don't get along with technology well, the uleway big button mobile phone is the perfect pick, with enough safety features for complete peace of mind, for both yourself and your elderly relatives.

A traditional flip phone with a little extra to offer, Uleway's excellent budget phone has large, tactile buttons which are easy to press when needed. The Uleway Big Button phone is equipped with SOS functionality, which you can link to an emergency phone number, so if anything happens, regardless of whether you can reach the phone, they can still get the help they need.

Of course, the Uleway Big Button phone isn't without its faults: it's a pretty basic phone and lacks any kind of sophistication, which might be disappointing for seniors looking to take some photos. But for those in need of a cheap phone that's accessible and reliable, the Uleway big-button mobile phone is a terrific choice.

Pros

  • Simple, durable and easy to use
  • SOS functionality for at-risk seniors
  • Dock charging is great for easy charging

Cons

  • Lacks the sophistication of a smartphone

Best battery life

Doro 2404 2GAmazon/Doro
Price: $60.82

For the best battery life, the Doro 2404 is easily one of the best mobile phones for its price. Simple to use, with a flip phone design for quick call-ending and a small, yet bright 2.6-inch screen, the Doro 2404 is superb for catching up throughout the day, all at the press of a button.

Doro's range of mobile phones are designed with seniors in mind, and with the 2404, you've got SOS emergency functionality too, which allows for five family members to be a push of a button away.

There isn't the array of features a typical smartphone may have, nor the speediness, but the Doro 2404 offers everything you'll need for basic phone features. Best of all, you can call all day without needing to charge for long.

Pros

  • Terrific simple mobile phone for seniors
  • Tough and well-designed
  • Includes SOS functionality for instant family member contact

Cons

  • Lacks the sophistication of an ordinary smartphone

Best under £30

Artfone C1Amazon/Artfone

A hardy mobile phone that's as affordable as it is easy to use, the Artfone C1 mobile phone is made for simplicity, and it certainly strives at it.

Drop-proof with a rubber coating for improved grip, the C1 is a phone that's built to last, despite costing under £30. Larger buttons help older users type numbers quickly and the tactile rubber click is better if your senior struggles with motor skills.

Perhaps the most impressive feature of the Artfone C1 is its 300-hour battery whilst on standby. This impressive battery life is great for having a mobile phone by your side whenever you need it, and is sure to provide reliable calling for the foreseeable future.

Lastly, the C1's SOS button, which is positioned on the back, is ideal for instantly calling family members, with up to five numbers available to program on a single button. It's a brilliantly innovative idea that might save the life of your senior family members, so there's no denying is worth it.

Pros

  • Excellent value mobile phone
  • Terrific 300-hour battery life
  • SOS functionality is easy to access

Cons

  • Lacking any sophisticated features

Best under £150

Motorola Moto G14Argos/Motorola

A powerful smartphone that's perfect for budget buyers, the Motorola Moto G14 is built for longevity, and its large 6.5-inch screen is perfect for large text and easy to access icons.

Great battery life and plenty of accessibility features, the G14 is ideal for those who are slightly ambititious with their technical proficiency: take pictures, make a Facebook account and text message friends and family with ease, the G14 is simple, and perfectly priced.

For some seniors, however, this smartphone might prove too difficult to use: it's a little more complicated than a standard flip phone, but less so than something high-end, so it's a good middle ground for those interested in trying out smartphone technology. A great cheap smartphone that's perfect for anyone, let alone seniors, it's a great choice for your elders.

Pros

  • Great build quality
  • Packed with incredible features
  • Ideal for easy browsing and comfortable use

Cons

  • Perhaps overcomplicated for some seniors

Best Google smartphone

Google Pixel 7Amazon/Google

Rrp: $820.34

Price: $719.00

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The Google Pixel 7 may not be specifically designed for seniors, but it is still a great pick. It has plenty of accessibility options, with an interface that feels natural to control, so you shouldn't have much issue navigating to your preferred apps.

It also sports an impressive charge that can last up to 72 hours, making it a great pick for anyone who doesn't want to be tethered to a charging port. The Pixel 7 also has a fantastic storage capacity, allowing you to store 256GB of photos, videos and more.

While the fingerprint reader is less than stellar, there are plenty of other features that make this brilliant phone absolutely worth the price.

We've tested the Google Pixel 7 Pro, and found it a hugely accomplished phone. If you feel that a little more power is required and like the sound of the standard Pixel 7, the Pro version would be worth considering.

Pros

  • Brilliant memory storage
  • Great battery life
  • Solid accessibility options

Cons

  • The fingerprint reader is a bit unreliable

Best Samsung phone

Samsung Galaxy A13Amazon/Samsung

An incredibly affordable option for a proper smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy A13 is a solid choice for those who want the performance of a smartphone with incredible accessibility options.

Built well with a sizeable 6.5-inch screen, the A13 makes the competition tough for other great senior phones on the market with its great design, quick performance and wide range of customisation for older users.

A unique feature of Samsung phones is their 'Easy Mode' functionality, which removes the A13's extra features for a standard mobile phone experience. This helps elderly users avoid any confusing additional features and simply use their A13 without issues.

Of course, at its price, the performance of the Galaxy A13 is not the greatest, with some lag in navigation and accessing the camera. That being said, for seniors - a solid design with great accessibility options is rare, and for around £140, it's a terrific option.

Pros

  • Fantastic screen size
  • Brilliant value
  • Excellent 'Easy Mode' functionality

Cons

  • Could do with a few more accessibility options

Best iPhone

Apple iPhone 14Amazon/Apple

Certainly, a premium smartphone with plenty of features for improved accessibility, alongside the benefits of a high-end phone, the Apple iPhone 14 is a phenomenally tough phone with a long-lasting battery, appealing aesthetic and tactile haptic vibrations for a responsive typing feel.

With Siri, an incredibly easy-to-use tool which should take only a second to learn, iPhone 14 users can access friends and family with a simple voice command, something that isn't as readily available on standard smartphones for seniors. You can also setup 'SOS' mode for instant, hands-free emergency calls, perfect for some peace of mind.

What's more, it has an incredible camera that's particularly forgiving for those who aren't as technologically inclined as others. Though the iPhone 14 lacks a dedicated easy mode for accessibility, there are undoubtedly adjustments you can make for your elderly relatives that'll make using the iPhone 14 easier to use - including a magnifying glass and an increased font size.

The iPhone 14 is one of the best iPhones of the year for performance and value alone, and it makes a perfect smartphone for seniors.

Pros

  • Camera is superb
  • Lightweight yet still durable
  • Excellent accessibility options

Cons

  • Some features are a bit technical

Best Nokia

Nokia 2660 FlipAmazon/Nokia
Price: $169.99

Certainly a blast from the past, the Nokia 2660 Flip is a super-simple phone that's beautifully designed and built for hours of use without charge.

With large buttons and a decently sized 2.8-inch display, senior users can expect the typical functions from this mobile phone, but when paired with Nokia's famously rugged design, you can expect this mobile phone to perform well for a long, long time.

As for additional features, the Nokia 2660 Flip sorely lacks any camera functionality, and of course, there are no voice controls of any kind, making this phone quite plain, but for elderly users - that might be precisely what you need.

In our Nokia 2660 Flip review, we acknowledged the solid build of the 2660 Flip, noting its phenomenal budget and impressive battery life, it's undoubtedly a perfect phone for seniors and is fantastically affordable compared to other options on the market.

Pros

  • Incredibly accessible and well-made
  • Ideal for less technologically-inclined users
  • Phenomenal battery life

Cons

  • Lacks the refinement of competing smartphones

Best high-end

Samsung Galaxy S23 UltraAmazon/Samsung

Last but certainly not least, the Samsung S23 Ultra is a truly high-end smartphone, perfect for amazing performance and some really nifty features that'll amaze your senior smartphone users.

Compatible with Samsung's brilliant easy mode, this mighty 6.8-inch smartphone is one of the biggest on the market, making it easy to type, and even easier to find in a pinch. Ultra-loud, and incredibly smart, senior users can control the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra using voice commands, accessing contacts without lifting a finger.

Of course, this powerful smartphone is a lot for a senior user, and has plenty of features that would otherwise be bewildering to those unfamiliar with technology, but that being said, it's a quality Android smartphone that should be considered for your seniors.

Pros

  • Ultra large screen is great for easy use
  • Equipped with easy mode for simple functionality
  • Excellent camera and great stylus features

Cons

  • Perhaps too advanced for some senior users

How to choose the best phones for seniors for you:

©Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels

What features should I look out for in the best phones for seniors?

When searching for the best phones for seniors, there are a few things you should consider before buying that are going to make use considerably easier for them:

Screen size:

A great screen size is perfect for improving readability: many standard mobile flip phones have tiny screens, which isn't ideal for someone who has eye problems. A big screen will be much easier to read, and will help seniors immeasurably.

Easy Mode:

If you have bought a smartphone for your senior family member, it's worth seeing if it has an 'Easy Mode' available. This will assist in reducing a vast number of features down to just a few, making it much easier

Durability:

If you're looking for a great phone for seniors, choosing a great tough phone is best - many mobile phones use tough clamshells and sturdy plastic that aren't going to be damaged from the occasional drop or fall. With smartphones, however, you have to be a little more careful. Many phone screens are delicate and can crack - so take caution by buying a reliable phone case.

How do I make a smartphone easier for seniors to use?

Turn up the volume of notifications and calls:

Turning up the volume of calls on a smartphone is a great way to assist elderly users, making calls and text notifications much more obvious, so nothing is ever missed.

Hearing aid compatibility:

Many smartphones have built-in hearing aid support, which is great for senior smartphone users, here's a rough guide for both Android and iPhone:

iPhone:

Go to Settings and ensure that Bluetooth is turned on. Then go to Accessibility and Hearing Devices. Turn the hearing aid off and on again, and you should have hearing aid support activated.

Samsung:

Open Settings and tap Accessibility, then Hearing enhancements. Next, tap Hearing aid compatibility and turn it on to use.

Are there any emergency features I should look out for?

SOS:

There are a huge amount of options available for mobile phones as well as smartphones that have built-in SOS buttons, which are perfect for quickly calling relatives or emergency services without typing.

Crash and fall detection:

Some modern smartphones have crash and fall detection, which detects if you've either taken a nasty fall or you've crashed your car. This brilliant technology can be toggled and may very well save your life or the lives of your senior relatives.

Emergency calls:

If you've sustained an awful injury and can't unlock your phone, you can skip the face detection and passwords by using an emergency call. This bypasses your phone lock, enabling a speedy call to the emergency services.

FAQs: your questions answered

The best smartphones for seniors
©Andrea Piacquadio

What is the best phone for a 70-year-old?

For senior users around 70 years old, limiting technical features will prove to be useful: they may have issues with eyesight and motor skills that may make using a phone difficult.

For us, the best phone for 70-year-olds has to be the Doro 8100 Plus: a perfect pick for easy-to-use functionality with a robust design, simple layout and familiar old-school button design.

Is iPhone or Android better for seniors?

iPhones and Android smartphones are both brilliant for seniors thanks to their incredible range of features that make daily use easier and emergency features for some peace of mind. But is there a brand that wins out?

For us, Android takes the victory thanks to a range of accessibility features, including 'Easy mode' which removes most of the features for a far easier layout. Generally speaking, Android phones are far more affordable and offer similar performance to iPhones, so they're perfect for seniors who aren't looking for the greatest smartphone features.

What is the best phone for seniors with memory problems?

Seniors suffering from dementia or other memory problems may struggle with smartphones and are likely to need a simple, easy-to-read layout. Choosing flip phones or large number phones is best for helping seniors to effectively make calls.

Ryan Houghton is a Tech Writer and Reviewer for What’s The Best, known best for his expertise in gaming, with a particular soft spot for PC gaming, audio tech, televisions and smartphones.

Diligently writing for What’s The Best for almost two years, there are very few tech products Ryan hasn’t had his hands on to review; televisions, headphones, folding phones and even LEGO, if it’s nerdy, he’ll be there.

His well-versed history as one of the resident techies at What’s The Best has kept him keen to uncover the very best deals, savings and offers for those in need of a cracking deal to upgrade their setup.

In his downtime, Ryan most likely has his nose buried in a fantasy book, or his eyes glued to a screen whilst playing a tough-as-nails Soulslike or leisurely RPG, indulging in most forms of escapism where possible.

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