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While many assume that seniors have little interest in smartphones, studies show that about half of older adults own one. And when it comes to smartphones, there’s hardly a better option than iPhones.
Combining sleek design with surprisingly intuitive interfaces, iPhones are the perfect smartphone for seniors. With that said, at any given moment, there are about a dozen different phone options from Apple to choose from. After months of testing, we’ve come up with three of our favorites.
Apple releases new iPhone models every year, and it’s often difficult to discern the differences between each one. When choosing the best iPhones for seniors, we looked for the following:
|Phone||Price||Screen Size||Camera Quality||Battery Life||Ideal For|
|iPhone SE||$399.99||4.7 inches||12 MP||
||Those who have never owned a smartphone and want a compact yet intuitive device.|
|iPhone 12 Mini||$699.99||5.4 inches||Dual 12 MP||
||Those who want a high-powered smartphone that can fit easily in a pocket.|
|iPhone XR||$499.99||6.1 inches||12MP||
||Those who want a high-powered smartphone that can last all day.|
Price: $399.99 when purchased through T-Mobile
As with any iPhone, the iPhone SE offers a stellar combination of intuitive design and high-end features. With this phone, you’ll have access to useful iPhone apps for seniors, in addition to the music, video, and gaming capabilities Apple is known for.
What separates this iPhone from the bunch is its price tag and size. At $399.99 for a new iPhone SE, this phone costs less than half the price of the newest releases from Apple. Additionally, while newer models have grown too large for most people to hold with a single hand, this phone is an exception.
While its camera is not as high-powered as newer iPhones, most older adults will find it perfectly suitable for sharing images with friends and social media. With its combination of usability, affordability, and quick performance, the iPhone SE is the ideal iPhone for this demographic.
Pro Tip: If you’re looking to save on your cellular plan, check out our guide to senior cell phone discounts.
Price: $629 when purchased through Mint Mobile
Apple’s newest flagship phone, the iPhone 12 offers 5G capabilities, IP86 water resistance, and camera quality that can give a DSLR a run for its money. Because of this, we think that the iPhone 12 Mini — small enough to fit in one hand — is a great option for seniors who don’t want to sacrifice anything when it comes to technological performance.
Like the other iPhone 12 models, the iPhone 12 Mini features a dual-camera design, which enabled us to take photos with a stunning degree of accuracy and definition. Additionally, its water-resistant build allowed this phone to perform, even after we dropped it in a glass of water. What’s more, with its 5G capabilities, we were able to stream videos, make calls, and browse the web with unparalleled speeds.
The one downside of the iPhone 12 Mini would have to be its battery life. Unlike the iPhone SE, this phone’s battery life drained a bit quicker than we would like; however, with its rapid charging abilities, we were able to fully charge it in a matter of minutes.
If you’re looking for a high-powered phone that doesn’t take up too much space in your pocket, look no further than the iPhone 12 Mini. To learn more about compatible plans for this phone, check out our guide to Mint Mobile for seniors.
FYI: While not the same as an iPhone, the Lively Smart is a great smartphone option made specifically for seniors. To learn more, read our Lively Smart review.
Price: $499.99 when purchased through Verizon
Although it’s a couple of years old — in terms of Apple’s yearly release cycles — the iPhone XR presents a great combination of high-end features at an affordable price point. With its large 6.1 inch screen, you’ll be able to stream videos and browse the web with crystal-clear quality.
What impressed us most about the iPhone XR, however, was its battery life. Between videos, music, and apps, smartphones are prone to quickly drain batteries. The iPhone XR, however, lasted us all day long with heavy use before needing a recharge. Additionally, it proved highly durable in our tests, capable of withstanding light water exposure and drops.
Another feature we appreciated in this phone was its facial identification. Rather than having to remember dozens of passwords for our various accounts, this phone allowed us to use our face as a password.
Of course, this phone is a bit large, making it less than ideal for those with small hands; however, for the person looking for a high-powered phone that won’t break the bank, the iPhone XR is a solid choice.
To learn more about the plans for this phone, check out our rundown of Verizon phones for seniors.
When it comes to choosing a network for your iPhone, we recommend choosing a provider that offers unlimited talk, text, and data plans. Otherwise, you’ll risk paying hefty overage charges for your internet use. Currently, T-Mobile offers the best deals on these types of plans for older adults.
T-Mobile plans for seniors cost $40 per month for unlimited talk, text, and data. What’s more, these plans allow access to 5G signal strength, and the price drops to $27.50 per line when you add a second line of service.
Any cell phone provides a convenient way to stay in touch with loved ones; however, iPhones essentially function as pocket-sized computers. Easy to pick up and use, iPhones are a great way to check emails, keep track of banking, and take photos; plus, they are becoming more affordable each year.
To learn more about our favorite phones for seniors, check out our helpful guides:
The Lively Flip is one of the easiest phones for seniors to use; however, iPhones are also a great option for those unafraid of additional features.
The iPhone SE is the easiest to use because of its small size and intuitive design.
While this varies from person to person, the Lively Flip is the easiest cell phone for seniors to use as a result of its large buttons, simple design, and voice commands.
While Android offers more features in terms of customization, iPhones are generally easier to use, as their menus are designed with greater simplicity.