Sooner or later using a smartphone becomes a challenge as eyesight, hearing, and dexterity are effected by age. You might find yourself squinting at buttons that now appear tiny or struggling with options when making a call, taking a photo, sending email or text, or any of the tasks you were use too. Unfortunately things change with time. But this doesn’t mean you have to switch to one of those bricks with large buttons.
There are many high-scoring phones in Consumer Reports’ ratings that have easy-to-use settings to accommodate your needs. These are the best smartphones for either seniors or others whose eyesight, hearing, or dexterity just isn’t what it once was.
Two of these high-scoring devices are the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and the Apple iPhone 6 Plus. Both of them have large, high-definition displays (5.7 & 5.5 inches, respectively) that make it easy to read, even in bright light. The cameras and long-lasting batteries are also great. But each has its own specific features that stand-out:
Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Easy Mode – Using the Easy Mode is a quick way to automatically boost the size of icons, numbers on the phone or keypad, and fonts in messaging and contacts. The Easy Mode only has essential features within critical apps active – camera, messaging, and phone. For example, with the camera it eliminates manual controls for adjusting white balance and ISO settings while keeping the flash mode and HDR options. Swiping the home screen to the right produces a listing of your 12 most important contacts.
Apple iPhone 6 Plus accessibility – Make the phone less intimidating by going to the Accessibility menu in General Settings. There you’ll find controls for making text larger and bolder, you’ll also find a switch called Button Shapes that makes navigation controls more prominent. There are also settings for users with hearing and visual impairments.
Even though the icons are easy to distinguish, you can still make them a little bigger by activating the Display Zoom feature in the main settings menu. You can further reduce distractions by moving icons for your favorite apps to the home page and stash the rest in a folder in the corner.
Read Article (Mike Gikas | consumerreports.org | 08/06/2015)
I’m sure many people will find these features handy, especially those that squint to see stuff on their phone. But the intimidation factor is very wide-spread and many will need assistance with these adjustments.
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