Simple phones for elderly?

Any phones with “big buttons” for the simple, non-techie among us?

There are a number of launchers that can be added to a phone to make it easier to use for seniors:


Basic answer, no. Republic supports smart phones only. See the post above mine for ways to make smartphones more non-techie friendly.

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Thanks guys! I’ll see if this satisfies my wife’s wish for a simple phone! Hope so!

I suggest the Evie launcher. It’s lightweight and you can make the icons very big. In the android settings under accessibility you can increase the global font size as well. I did this when I passed my MotoX2 to my dad.


Hi @kimw.jl7dem
Smartphones are a new learning curve if you have flip phones that are becoming dinosaurs. The largest hurdle is just opening the phone screen to use it. My wife swore to not ever use those things as she called them. Now I can’t pry it out of her hands long enough to update apps.

Yes it is true Drugs are terrible but aren’t the real addiction in life (not that it isn’t a huge plague in the USA & the World). The real addictions are Smart Cell phones & Air Conditioning!
Hence my wife doing Facebook and her games she plays,
Good luck with your wife the next month may seem longer than a month but after the learning curve is beat it becomes way to easy to use that phone!

Every ‘family’ has it’s own Tech Support go to person … tell your wife, at Republic Wireless, she has a whole bunch of us … across all age groups and time zones :heart_eyes:


Elderly folks find smart phones difficult to use.

It’s a myth and the “senior” apps are usually a wast of time.

Once a user knows to touch the phone icon the default app’s key pad is usually larger that on a flip phone.

If somebody wants to use just as a phone it’s simple enough to remove the other app icons to avoid confusion or opening them by accident. It’s very easy to ignore the smart if desired.


My myth’s name is Rose. She’s 87.


This simplified launcher has (at a minimum) 100,000 installs. That’s a lot of myths. :slightly_smiling_face: And, it appears the developer doesn’t believe they’re wasting their time.

Samsung (far and away the largest Android OEM) offers a “simple mode” built into its user interface. Apple succeeds in part because its products have a reputation as being easy to use.

While it’s not necessarily accurate to paint a particular demographic with a broad brush, I think it’s quite fair to say there are lots of folks for whom smartphones are more complex than they would like. I also think on balance one will find a higher percentage of those folks to be older rather than younger.


LOL I am one of those myth at 81 still use all the smart phones even my wife who is 79 an use the heck out of he moto5X. Kindle an a lap top too

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Which one are you referring to? I would like to take a look.

Largely a myth may be a better issue description. Adding apps when not needed is not a recommended practice. I’d advise a wait & see approach only adding a “dumb it down” app if needed after giving the elderly a chance to demonstrate how bright they are.

The biggest hurdle to transitioning I’ve seen is folks learning how to properly touch the CTD to get the desired results. That can often be solved with a 5 minute hands on training session. Some people regardless of age have touch issues do to physical limitations.

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Who’s to say what is and is not needed? Opinions on this will vary. For example, @seanr wrote a blog in which he detailed getting his parents up and running on Republic. That blog recommended use of a different alternative launcher: (which has minimum of 500,000 installs, so apparently some more myths).

That’s your advice and it’s more than fine for you to offer it. Others are free to offer different equally valid advice. And, it’s not necessarily all about age. My 84 year old mother is quite tech savvy using her Mac, iPad and iPhone daily. She’s responsible for bringing the first computer (an Apple IIc) into the family in 1984. She worked in education, so the Apple connection is hardly surprising. On the other hand I have younger (middle aged) family members who have no interest in a smartphone whatsoever. Were they ever to change their mind on that, I can see a simplified interface as being advantageous if not a necessity for them.


Thanks for the app name.

Oh, my wife is intelligent…she just wishes phones were still of the rotary type. She is not a fan of “overengineering.”


Here you go. …



I too wish Republic supported a simple phone. I just want to make phone calls and maybe a little texting.

Recently I replaced my 10-year young Motorola Razr (an excellent phone, BTW) with a new flip phone to access the 4g network of my prior carrier, because that carrier was downgrading the available bandwidth and signal strength on their 2g network. The new flip phone is excellent. I abandoned my old carrier and the new flip phone for Republic because I was unhappy with my prior carrier’s service and service reps.

A flip phone is a simple device for a simple task and it’s well-shaped and relatively rugged. A smart phone is a fragile, poorly shaped, complicated device that requires occasional upgrading of the operating system and Republic app. Using a smart phone for calling is like using a D9 Caterpillar to dig a little patch of ground in my backyard to plant flowers.

Another issue is that one must add an account (like Google) to access the Google store for the upgrades. Google grabs every bit of information from the smart phone. When I unsynch and delete the Google account after the upgrades, Google also deletes all of my contacts. (Ugh!! Another problem for another thread.)

Other than the above rants about smart phones and Google, I love Republic and I’m very happy. Have a nice day!

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