The best mobile phones with big buttons for elderly people

If you’re looking for a phone with big buttons for an older person that’s easy to use, there are plenty to choose from. Lots of people prefer a phone they can easily text and call on - and these types of phones are especially good for elderly people, people who are hard of hearing or use hearing aids, or people with limited sight. Here’s a helpful guide to the features you may want to think about when you’re choosing a phone with big buttons.

Phones with big buttons

Mobiles with big buttons are a must if you want to stay in touch with people easily and quickly. Large button mobiles are especially helpful if you can’t see very well, or you prefer the look and feel of a ‘traditional’ mobile.

There are several phones with well-spaced keys to choose from, like the Doro 1370, the Nokia 130 and Alcatel 20.03. The Alcatel 20.03 has large backlit buttons, so you’ll even get great visibility in the dark, pressing the right button every time. The Doro 1370 has well-separated, large rubber buttons for simple texting and dialling. You can even press direct keys to take you straight to your messages, favourite contacts, torch or camera.

Older woman using a mobile phone with large buttons

Easy to use mobile phones

Navigating a new phone can be complex - especially if all you want to do is send a short text or call someone for a quick chat. The Nokia 130 has a clear icon menu which is easy to use, and you can also return to the main menu at the click of a button.

The Alcatel 20.03 even has a shortcut key for text messages – if you need to access them quickly, just press ‘5’.

Taking a picture on a mobile phone at a festival

Basic phones with big screens

Phones with large buttons can help when you’re texting and typing, but you should also consider whether your perfect phone has a large, easy to read display with the option to enlarge text.

The Doro 1370’s wide 2.4-inch display is perfect for reading more of your messages in one view and seeing more detail and colour in pictures.

Doro 7060 screen

Tough mobile phones with strong exteriors

If you need to take your time when you’re using your phone, you’ll need a light mobile which sits in your hand easily while you text or dial. The Nokia 130 comes with a glossy front and matte back finish for better grip, with a tough polycarbonate shell which protects your phone even if you drop or scratch it.

You can even buy protective cases which can help to protect your phone and keep it safe while you’re carrying it around.

Nokia 130

Phones for hearing impaired people with clear sound

It can be a struggle to make a call if you’re hard of hearing – especially if you’re in a busy place, or there’s a lot going on around you. The Doro 1370 provides loud, high-quality sound, so you can easily hear who you’re speaking to. It’s also hearing aid compatible and has a speakerphone function so you can play voice messages out loud and have conversations without using the earpiece.

Older woman talking on the phone

Call for help with an SOS button

If you worry that you won’t be able to use your phone quickly in an emergency, a mobile with an SOS button can put your mind at ease, and give you the confidence to live your life to the full. There’s an easy-to-find assistance button on the back of the Doro 1370 - push it if you need to contact friends and family in an emergency. The phone will automatically send your chosen contacts a text with your GPS location.

Even if your mobile phone is on a Pay as you go contract and you have no credit, you’ll always be able to use this feature.

Simple phones with good cameras

Just because you’re after a simple, dependable phone doesn’t mean you can’t have a little fun. Whether you’re getting some unmissable pictures of your pets or you’d like to share some high-quality shots of your latest holiday, the Nokia 130’s built-in rear camera is simple to use. You can even share files via Bluetooth.

If you can’t go a day without snapping away, there’s no need to worry about space on your phone - the Alcatel 20.03 comes with a microSD slot, so you can store an impressive 32GB of extra pictures and files if you need to.

Two older women smiling

Smartphones with big buttons

If you’re looking for a phone with big buttons which also has a simple smartphone screen, there are phones available which combine the best of both worlds. The MobiWire Oneida Lite with has a compact 2.8-inch display and comes in two variations - one with a camera, and one without. Both phones come with the same easy-to-use smartphone functionality, and are compatible with 4G and WiFi. You can access Facebook and WhatsApp directly from the home screen, check your emails, make calls and browse on the go - and everything’s wrapped up in a premium, glossy-looking exterior.

Find your perfect match

Here are three phones which we’d recommend for people who need big buttons and clear displays.

If you think a tablet would be a better choice for you, or someone you’re buying for, you can browse our range of the best tablets for older people.

Doro 1370



Easily stay in touch with friends and family using the well-separated buttons, enjoy clear, high-quality sound and call for help if you need it with the assistance button.

Get the Doro 1370
Nokia 130



The Nokia 130 will be your lasting companion with its durable and elegant polycarbonate shell plus its built-in MP3 player and games will keep you fully entertained.

Get the Nokia 130
Alcatel 20.03



The super-slim Alcatel 20.03 is an affordable, practical phone offering you easy navigation, durability and a microSD card slot with up to 32GB extra storage. 



Get the Alcatel 20.03

Find out more about staying in touch

Phishing is when fraudsters send texts and emails and make calls pretending to be legitimate companies in order to gain access to personal details – like your bank account.

Criminals often target older people as they can be more vulnerable to scams, especially if they live alone.

Here's some information on how to protect yourself and your family, and stay safe online.

If you have a smartphone which uses 4G or WiFi, you can make free voice and video calls if the person you’re contacting also has a smartphone which can access the internet. You can talk to your family and friends using just audio, like you would for a normal phone call, or even see them face-to-face using video. WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are two of the best-known apps for making free video calls.

If you have an Android phone (for example, Samsung, Sony, Google, or Huawei) you can download these apps using Google Play. If you’re using an iPhone, you can use the App Store.

It’s worth bearing in mind that these calls will be free if you’re using WiFi, but they will use up your data if you’re using 4G, which could affect the cost of your bill. 

Your phone or tablet can be a great help in checking and maintaining your health. Even the simplest phones have reminders, so you can set up prompts to take medication or get out in the fresh air. Smartphone and tablet apps can record and analyse your vital statistics such as blood pressure. There are also apps that help you make the most of fitness wristbands, smart watches and other 'wearable' devices.

We truly believe that we offer products and services are for everyone. We're here to help you get the most out of your devices so if you have restricted vision, difficulty hearing or speaking, or have limited dexterity or mobility, we're here to help. We offer SignVideo interpreting and text-to-voice/voice-to-text, and Braille bills. To find out more see our accessibility services.

The main hearing and vision charities, and manufacturers like Samsung and Apple, have lots of advice on their websites. There's also advice on the web about the best apps for elderly people, and people with a visual or hearing impairment, or mobility issues.

With our Protected Service scheme you can choose a trusted friend or family member to manage your account on your behalf.