How to Set Up Samsung Easy Mode & Other Tips for Tech Savvy Seniors

How to Use Samsung Easy Mode

A couple years ago we traveled with some older family members and while we made some wonderful memories on that trip there are definitely some things I would change if we do it again in the future. First and foremost I think everyone should have a smartphone and since I’m a lot biased I think everyone should own a Samsung Galaxy S8 just like mine because it’s snazzy and intelligent and takes some of the best photos around. Now I realize technology can be overwhelming, especially to older folks, but there are some ways to help them feel less intimidated by the experience so they can stay connected to family and friends.

Disclosure: I’m a compensated member of the U.S. Cellular Blogger Brigade, but I love helping seniors become more tech savvy. 

On that trip I mentioned earlier one of the senior citizens we were traveling with got separated from the rest of the family. Of course we panicked because we were in a really big theme park, which is probably one of the most difficult places to find a missing loved one. What made the situation worse was the fact he didn’t have his phone with him because he had lost it earlier in the trip, so we had no way of trying to reach him. We frantically began to search and luckily were able to find him pretty quickly, but yeah, that phone would have come in really handy. Especially a smartphone with some sort of GPS tracking, if you know what I mean?

Like I touched on earlier, the thought of a smartphone can make a person nervous. I consider myself pretty tech-savvy, but I can also understand how daunting it might feel to look at a screen filled with icons and having no idea what to do with any of them. That’s why it’s up to us cool and hip younger types to help our elders understand new technology so they can make calls and stay connected with family and friends while relaxing through their golden years. Ooh, that reminds me, a gold smartphone would be perfect for your favorite senior citizen, wouldn’t you agree? Okay, fine, maybe they don’t need a fun-colored phone with a blinged out case (yet), so for now let’s just keep things simple. And then maybe later help them pick out a fun case with a little character.

One person I’d love to see have a smartphone is my Mom. Not only because of the positive difference it would make in her life, but also so she could keep up with all my social media posts. Maybe that sounds a little selfish, but what can I say? I post a lot of photos and updates and she needs to see them whether she wants to or not.

How to Find the Perfect Cell Phone for a Senior

As we get older there are things that simply become more challenging. Loss of hearing and vision as well as difficulty with dexterity are some of the most common struggles older folks face, which means finding the right smartphone for them can be tricky.  Tricky because if we don’t help them choose the best phone for their needs they might end up feeling frustrated and discouraged and toss the phone in a drawer. If they do that they’ll miss out on all of their loved ones’ social media posts and that would be a sad, sad thing.

  • Two great choices would be either the iPhone 8 Plus or the Samsung Galaxy Note 8. They both offer a large screen that is easy to read and navigate. Another great benefit of a larger screen is that it will be much easier for a senior to use, especially when typing and reading messages from friends and family.
  • Teaching your favorite senior how to adjust the settings on their phone will make their experience a lot more user-friendly as well. The Accessibility option in the Settings menu will be a great place to start since most smartphones offer options for setting voice control and increasing font size. Seriously, I’m not even close to calling myself a senior citizen yet, but one of my favorite tricks to discover was increasing the font size, which has come in quite handy, especially when I’m texting with my husband and son.
  • You can even help them activate settings if they are either hearing or visually impaired because many phones nowadays offer closed captioning or a light-up notification if they’re hard of hearing. With settings like this there’s really no reason for anyone, regardless of their ability, to live without a smartphone. Unless they really want to live without one, of course, because I’m not here to say we should force a smartphone into the hand of every senior citizen, but if they do want one they should totally have one.

Samsung Easy Mode is the Best Thing Ever

I’ve already said I’m partial to Samsung smartphones and the Easy Mode setting is one of the reasons why I love them so much, especially for a senior.  It’s super simple to switch a Samsung phone over to Easy Mode, which I did a few days ago and I’m kind of loving it.

  1. From the top of your screen, swipe down.
  2. Go to the Settings menu (on my phone it’s the gear in the upper right corner).
  3. Scroll down and tap on the Display setting.
  4. Once in the Display menu, scroll down to find Easy Mode. Tap to enable it and then tap Apply and you’re all set.

Easy Mode makes your home screen simpler with larger icons. It also automatically make numbers on your keypad larger as well as enlarging fonts for when you need to use the keyboard. One of my favorite things about Easy Mode is that it adds a Magnifier icon to the app screen. I often use my camera zoom to read small print, so having this as an option without all the extra steps is kind of awesome. Within the magnifier you can even snap a photo, so it’s like a two-for-one deal if you ask me. I might keep my phone in Easy Mode for a while just because I like that feature so much. I mean, I try to keep a pair of reading glasses nearby at all times, but for when I don’t my phone is pretty much always by my side so this app comes in quite handy.

Push Notifications Can Be Really Annoying

One last, and very important thing to do when helping a senior get set up with a new smartphone is to put a stop to push notifications before they even have a chance to start. While some notifications are good to receive, like those for phone calls and text messages, there are others that might overwhelm them and their phone’s home screen. So take that one final step and help them figure out which ones matter most to them and teach them how to shut off the ones they don’t want to see.

Did I forget anything? What’s your best tip for helping a senior citizen become more tech savvy? 

 

 

Comments

  1. Great post! My Mom isn’t what I’d call a senior citizen yet, but I think she would really enjoy all the iPhone (I haven’t tried the Galaxy line of Samsung phones, but my son loves his J7 V!) has to offer. She already has an old school iPod, so she can use all the social media apps with that, but I think having the phone would be great for her because then she wouldn’t have to carry her iPod, and a phone, AND sometimes a camera with her when going places.

    I can’t even get her to text on her flip phone, so she’s fighting tech pretty hard.
    Kim @ The ReInVintaged Life recently posted..2017: The Year in VintageMy Profile

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