GreatCall Lively Review: A Mobile Medical Alert System

The right medical alert system provides peace of mind for seniors. As we age, we’re more likely to suffer a fall or a medical emergency and need help. Having a medical alert system means seniors can get assistance with just one button press.

One reliable and reasonably priced mobile medical alert service that we reviewed some years ago is GreatCall Lively Mobile. GreatCall products are already well known for their award-winning senior-friendly Jitterbug cell phone with added health and safety services.

GreatCall also makes a standalone cellular medical alert called the GreatCall Lively Mobile. This lightweight, easy-to-use mobile alert is still going strong, so it’s time to revisit it. Let’s take a look at what GreatCall Lively Mobile has to offer.

GreatCall LivelyBasicPreferredUltimate
Monthly Cost$24.99$29.99$39.99
5 Star ServiceXXX
Urgent CareXX
GreatCall LinkXX
Device ReplacementX
Fall DetectionX

Lively Mobile Medical Alert: Updated ReviewThe Stuff We Liked:

Cellular, waterproof and lightweight unit. Works on the Verizon network, can be bundled on the same account with the senior-friendly phone Jitterbug (although pricing remains the same). First 30 days free, Urgent Care and device replacement with the Ultimate plan is a great deal.

No limits to in-home range since it's a cellular-only option. Lots of extras included in each plan (keep reading for additional detail about extras). U.S based monitoring center, not outsourced. No contracts, no cancellation fees.

The Stuff We Didn't: While unit is quite small for a cellular medical alert, it's too large to be worn on smaller wrists. Daily charge is recommended, we'd love to see the battery last longer (but then the unit would be larger, so it's a trade-off).

The Bottom Line: GreatCall Lively Mobile is a great cellular option, especially for users looking for a medical alert device that operates on the Verizon network. Competitively priced with the first 30 days free make this a great option for a cellular medical alert system.

Visit GreatCall to order or call 1-844-817-7842 for more information.

Go Anywhere with GreatCall Lively Mobile

The GreatCall Lively Mobile medical alert makes it easy for seniors to go anywhere, knowing the call center has their back.

Most mobile medical alert devices use the AT&T or T-Mobile networks. GreatCall is different in that it uses Verizon. This makes it a great choice for anyone who happens to live in an area where AT&T or T-Mobile reception isn’t very good, or in an area where Verizon reception is strong.

GreatCall Lively Mobile is also waterproof, which means users can keep it on even when bathing or showering. As the bathroom is a common area for slips and falls, a good watertight rating is a must, and GreatCall delivers with a truly waterproof device.

Swift Response When Help Is Needed

GreatCall is understandably proud of their reputation for swift response when the button is pressed (as verified by the Good Housekeeping Research Institute).

Seniors and caregivers can rest easy knowing that when help is needed, they’ll get a response quickly. Communication through the device works via the two-way speakerphone integrated into the GreatCall medical alert.

What’s In The Box?

Every order includes:

  • A GreatCall Lively mobile medical alert system
  • Easy-to-use charging cradle
  • Magnetic lanyard for ease of wearing (and removing quickly if needed)
  • Accessory clip for wearing it on a belt or carrying in a purse
  • Simple-to-follow user guides

The Lively Mobile Alert comes with a charging cradle, magnetic lanyard, accessory clip (for attaching to a belt or purse), as well as a helpful quick start guide.

The wristband option is also available, although for someone with small wrists, it feels a bit large to be worn there.

GreatCall Lively Mobile Photos (Click photos to enlarge)

Added Extras

GreatCall offers a range of added extras including:

  • Urgent Care – users can talk to a live nurse or doctor any time 24/7. They can also order medication prescriptions over the phone.
  • GreatCall Link – an app that caregivers can log into and view health and account information for their senior
  • Affordable replacements – customers can request a replacement device for just $15 if the GreatCall Lively Mobile medical alert system is lost or stolen
  • Fall detection – enabling fall detection means that if the device senses unusual movement, it will automatically connect to the call center and make sure the user gets the help they need.

Affordable, Flexible Solutions

One of the things we especially like about the GreatCall Lively Mobile is the reasonable monthly pricing. GreatCall Lively Mobile offers three packages:

Basic: Includes the GreatCall device and excellent customer service, plus charging cradle, accessory clip and lanyard. $24.99 monthly.
Preferred: Includes everything in the Basic package, plus Urgent Care and GreatCall Link. $29.99 monthly.
Ultimate: Includes everything in the Preferred package, plus device replacement and fall detection. $39.99 monthly.

There is also a one-time fee of $37.49 to purchase the device itself.

GreatCall doesn’t tie their customers into long term contracts. You can cancel anytime, and there are no cancellation fees.

What We Like

We like how small and lightweight the GreatCall Lively Mobile is. Even for seniors who are hesitant to wear medical alarm bracelets or pendants, GreatCall is a viable option, being light and easy to wear.

We wore it all day and barely noticed it after the first few minutes (though we found it was a little bulky to wear on the wrist). We also love the swift service, competitive monthly price, and the Urgent Care and GreatCall Link added features.

What We’d Change

GreatCall advises that users should charge the device every day for the best results. This is one of the things we’d change about GreatCall Lively Mobile.

With some mobile medical alert devices running for two, three or even five days on one charge, having to remember a daily charge seems a little inconvenient.

We’d also like to see fall detection as standard.

We think GreatCall Lively Mobile is a fantastic option for seniors who want peace of mind at home and outside. It’s affordable, lightweight, easy to use, and comes with useful extra features and award-winning customer service.

The GreatCall Lively medical alert has been added to the list of Top Medical Alert Systems.


  1. Got the jitterbug for my 90 year old mother. Even though it was twice the price of the reg Verizon phone, the buttons were bigger and the ease and safety features made our decision to change. Big mistake. Original jitterbug only lasted 4 months . Called, got a replacement. You would think especially with seniors, they would make sure the phone was going to work. Wrong, replacement phone did not work. Done with Greatcalls. Not worth the stress.

  2. For the last 4 weeks we have been trying to get the GPS on my Dad’s 5Star working. I called customer service numerous times each week and I have received numerous excuses, too many to list. I also had promises of calls back yet nothing. I even had 3 new units and none worked. I asked if they can treat me as a new customer and delete the entire account and start over. They couldn’t do that either. Service is terrible and time for another service

  3. I recently started trying the GreatCall Lively with fall protection “30 day free trial period” and so far, I am concerned about the battery life and customer service. The device did not hold a charge for over 7-8 hours most days. Not the 24 hours that they say it will. So, I called customer service, and they told me that I had been send “old” chargers based on the serial numbers of the chargers I gave them. (My original deal was for 2 chargers.) This made me wonder why a new customer on the “30 day free trial period” would be sent “old” chargers… When the package arrived, there was only one charger– not two as promised. I called. They said they would send me another charger. Meanwhile 2 days after using the ‘new’ charger that I had received, the device lost its charge after 7-8 hours. I called again. I explained what had happened since the start. They said they would send ANOTHER new charger AND a new device. The first customer service rep said the problem was not the device, it was the “old” chargers. This customer service rep said she thought (like I did) that it may be the device since the device one day held a charge and the next day did not. They DE-activated the device I have now since they are sending me a new one, and they say they cannot keep the one I have working til I get the new one, (even tho this is an option for some people, but they already got it started, and can’t change it now.) Great, I pay for their mistake which is particularly upsetting since I have recently had some problems and was referred to a cardiologist. This is not the best customer service so far. I am going to try the new one if and when I get it, but I concur with the people who say that customer service is not very good. Each time I had to demand that they extend the “free 30 day trial period” because the thing was not working right because it did not hold a charge. The first time, the customer service rep said ok we will add 30 days and they added 30 days from the time of our conversation, not the time that the one (instead of the promised two) new charger arrived almost 2 weeks later. When they send out equipment, they say “10 working days” so that gives them 2 weeks. The second time I demanded that they add on 30 days from the time that the new device and charger arrive and they said they would. We will see. I’m a pretty assertive senior, not as old as many who use this device, so I do have concerns about this company especially for seniors who are less assertive. Every business has problems, so I am giving them a chance to see if the new equipment they are sending me will work correctly or I am sending it back.

  4. This company double bills on auto pay and then it is a nightmare to get it fixed. Service good but unethical auto withdrawals NOT recommended. And customer service sees two withdrawals in 9ne month but doesn’t do a damn thing about it. Horrible. Best advice get a pre paid card and use that for auto withdrawals (they will not do anything but auto withdrawals). Never leave your account vulnerable to this company. I can not tell you the hell I am going through.

  5. I hate to say it, but my Mom is having the same issue. We had a Great Call Lively that wouldn’t hold it’s charge so we replaced it (for a fee) in December. Two months later, the brand new device is not holding a charge for more than 7.5 hours at a time. My Mom is 95 and needs something that won’t require constant charging. The agents available on the phone keep trying to reboot it and this doesn’t correct the issue, which I suspect is a design flaw. It’s a good concept … cellular signal that is not reliant on a base station. But if it is not practical, it doesn’t matter how good an idea it is.

  6. I am in my second year of using great call also on my second lively mobile because the first one went bonkers. Now the current lively is not holding a charge from one day to the next. I charge it every night when I go to bed and now it is blinking red early in the evening and beeping at me and then sometimes turning itself off. I am very unhappy about this and I’m considering canceling the service.I would say that the battery should last at least 24 hours. Another thing the thing tells me it’s charged in less than an hour and I see recommendations that you should charge it for 90 minutes but that’s really stupid if it tells you when it’s got a complete charge.there are definitely battery problems although I believe it’s a decent service if you got a decent device.

    1. I changed from the old GreatCall device to the Lively mobile for the fall detection for my mom. When I called to upgrade, I told the Great Call rep that we wanted the Ultimate package with fall detection. She gave me the cost and talked about the features and sent the new Lively device. From the beginning it didn’t stay charged but about 8-9 hours. It was on the charger EVERY night for about 12 hours each time. I called the service number and told them it should be able to hold a charge for at least 12 hours so it would work during the time most of the users would be up and about. The rep kept asking me to be sure mom was putting it on the charger correctly. Yes, she listens for the ‘music’ when she places it in the charger. I was told to charge it each night for a few more days and be sure she was doing it correctly. (This gets very frustrating, since I must have repeated this part of the conversation at least 3 times.) A week later, I called again with the same issue – not holding a charge throughout the day. This rep said maybe it was the charger and they sent another one. Same problem with the new charger. I let it go a couple weeks and called again. The wanted to send me another charger and I suggested that maybe it was the device, not the charger. After some discussion, they finally agreed to send another device. A new Lively AND another charger came. Charged it up over night and the next day – same thing – about 8 hours of time before it went dead. This time, the rep said because the device has so many features and the fall detection, it uses the battery much faster. She suggested that Mom put it on the charger after about 5 hours for 90 minutes and then put it back on. So, my 93 year old mother is supposed to remember to remove the device, put it on the charger by her bed or chair and then when she needs to get up, remember to put it back around her neck for the next 5 hours until bedtime. Not acceptable! Then when she fell, the fall detection application didn’t work – no call from Great Call. I called the service rep again and told them the fall detection didn’t work. She said that it only works when they fall IF they don’t move at all for a few second or more. That if the wearer moves it knows they can push the button themself. Now, 2 months later and several phone calls about short battery life, I made another call to change the credit card number on the account and found that the fall detection feature was never activated. She also said the information about short battery life was incorrect. It should hold a charge all day. And the information about the fall detection only working if the user was still after a fall was incorrect. The device should call immediately upon a fall. She said she would add the fall detection, but I should go to Mom’s to make sure it said “Fall Detection activated” when it is placed in the charging cradle and call them back. Of course, you never get the same person twice. I called back, got another rep and had to explain all of this again. She gave me the same answer about the extra features causing short battery life and it would only work 5-8 hours with fall detection. If it was only working about 8 hours WITHOUT fall detection, I’m not so sure about it making it to 8 hours with fall detection. We’ll find out tomorrow. There was nothing in all the information provided by Great Call about the short battery life. That should be disclosed when someone calls to inquire about the device. My mom is still quite active at 93, but does have a balance issue and has had several falls. I need the device to be useable for at least 10-12 hours. If it has to be a little larger to do that, then make it a little larger. Very disappointed. We can go back to the $19.99 package if it won’t stay working during her waking hours. Otherwise, we have loved the Great Call overall, but the battery life, and different information from the service reps is annoying.
      Just be aware that this is a big problem, unless your user takes 90 minutes naps during the middle of the day every day and can be sure they charge it during that time and remember to put it back on when they get up.

  7. I was considering using you but I have ATT. Also some reviews are concerning. Please let me know when it works with something other than Verizon. Verizon does not work where I live. Thank you.

  8. I see many comments about peace of mind. Unfortunately my neighbor had the 5 Star device for 2 years and the one time she fell to the floor because she was having a heart attack and pressed the call button she was told repeatedly that she must call 911 on her own phone. She could not reach the phone and begged for the operator to call 911 for her. Help was never called. The next day she managed to go see her doctor who immediately admitted her to the hospital because she had had a heart attack.
    So much for peace of mind.

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