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No-frills £55 phone launches for the elderly
A £55 no-frills mobile phone for old people, with just eight pre-programmed numbers for friends and family, has been launched by charity Age UK. The credit card-sized ‘My Phone’ has been designed to make phone calls easy for people unfamiliar with modern technology or with bad eyesight.
Rather than press numbers to make a phone call, the owner simply presses a customised button with the name of a friend or family member on it. The phone can take up to eight numbers, which are pre-programmed into the phone by the manufacturer when it is ordered. The phones also have an ‘answer’ button and an ‘on/off’ switch.
The simple format means that an elderly person can contact loved ones at the touch of a button and without the need to go through a phonebook. The phones, which come in 11 different colours, arrive fully-charged and have a battery life of around five days. According to research by Age UK, seven in ten of those aged over 65 use a mobile phone. However this falls to just over half among those aged over 75.
Helena King, head of affinity at Age UK, said it is “not surprising” that some older people have limited experience of using mobile phones as most people over the age of 65 use a fixed landline as their main method of making and receiving phone calls. She said that the My Phone is “easy to use and means that people can contact their nearest and dearest at literally the touch of a button”.