Top positive review
61 people found this helpful
Think of this as a "safety" phone, for low-vision/blind and Seniors, and peace of mind for YOU!
on June 4, 2011
First of all, this is a simple "feature" phone, and far removed from a smart phone. Yes, you can text for those times when one might want to (several popular TV talent shows come to mind....) but this is truly a phone to make CALLS, and offer ease of use.
I got this for a senior family member who suffers from macular degeneration, and is almost blind. Traditional cell phones ( particularly touch screen) had become hard, if not impossible to use.
I looked at several brands, including the better known "Jitterbug" and decided to try this- and I am glad I did. Just 5 is a strong brand in Europe, and is making its way to the USA now. The design is simple and clean, almost as though you did buy it in Europe or at IKEA here in the states - quite a nice look!
The read-out is bright, black against orange, very easy to see. I tested this without contacts or glasses, and was able to see it quite clearly.
Some of the nice extra's include a LED flashlight (super bright!) and a radio mode (great reception!) that I pre-set to a traffic/weather/news station, which is a nice way to be connected. Ear phones are included, too. This is great to empower people with vision issues - it can be hard to tune a radio, sometimes.
As for operation, I like the "talking" feature that confirms each button you press. Some may need this, others may not - you can easily turn this feature OFF, if you like. I tested this with a blindfold, and was able to dial with ease. Yes, there is a "bump" on the 5 key to help you help you get oriented, a bit.
Sound quality was outstanding, be it on speaker phone or traditional use. Very easy to set up auto-dial numbers, as well.
Battery life is almost un-heard of ( to me, anyway) well exceeding the 6 days indicated when on "stand by". Amazing! Really.
What most people will buy this for, is the "hoped to be never used" SOS feature - a recessed button on the back of the phone. When pushed for a few seconds, it will auto-dial and TEXT a distress message to up to 5 numbers (911 is the default, if you dont enter numbers), which is a HUGE value.
This ALONE, is a great peace of mind benefit, somewhat like a life-alert system. When activated, the phone goes into speaker phone mode,and dials numbers until there is an answer , and keeps re-dialing and texting for an hour. In addition, a VERY LOUD siren sound comes from the phone, which would help EMT's find the person in distress.
( do note, this unit would not replace a traditional alert system, as it is NOT waterproof, nor does it connect you to a dedicated rescue service, other than 911, if you program it. It is a GREAT addition to such services, and is far less costly- if you can afford both-great, if not, this is an important option).
Lastly, PLEASE set this up FIRST before you give it to someone! I do wish it was out-of-the-box ready to go, but it is NOT. You may or may not need a GSM sim card ( if you DO, Amazon vendors have them, frequently under $3.00, in cell stores around $25.00).
Set up the number, and select your plan - T-Mobile and AT&T are the GSM firms in the states. I selected a pay-as-you-go plan with no-contract, .10 a minute plan. $15 a month will keep you going for 30 days, and $100 is good for a year. That is around 8 bucks and change, which is a good deal.
Some Just 5 phones come with a JOLT mobile sim card, which may be worth your consideration, too. Be sure to check around to see what might offer the best price, and coverage.
Seniors and low-vision/blind people are the core audience here, and they like things they CAN do, rather than being reminded of what they CANT do. Four stars only because I would like more text-to-speech. Exceptional! A feel-good/feel-safe gift, as well!