For seniors, a (wireless) moment

February 11, 2009

If you have a grandmother or grandfather, especially if they’re living  alone, here’s a better option for Valentine’s gift than roses or chocolates: a mobile phone. If the power goes out in Grandpa’s house during a snowstorm or if Grandma’s car conks out when she’s driving home at night, a mobile phone could be a lifeline.

Granted, many of the small handsets on the market might not be easy to operate in dim lighting.  But as Katherine Boehret reports in the Mossberg Corner [Link] of today’s Wall Street Journal, companies are  
taking notice.  Plantronics just came out with a mobile handset especially for seniors – big screen, large numbers, not a lot of confusing extra buttons.  The handset will work on different carriers’ networks.

Another option is the Jitterbug, also designed for seniors.  You can’t surf the Internet but for phone calling, including the urgent 911, it couldn’t be easier.

True, a mobile phone won’t float around the house like balloons but for their (and your) peace-of-mind, it’s a much better option.