21 Ways Seniors Can Use Smartphones To Stay Connected And Enjoy Their Lives

The number of seniors that are using smartphones grows every day. Without a doubt, using a smartphone is both practical and entertaining. So in this article, we share with you the 21 ways seniors can use smartphones to stay connected and enjoy their lives.

Certified Senior Advisor (CSA)®
Assistive Technology Professional
Seniors Can Use Smartphones
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Smartphones have become an essential part of life for many seniors. In fact, a recent study found that about one-third of all Americans age 65 and older own a smartphone. And the numbers are growing every day.

So what can seniors do with their smartphones?

Here are 21 ways to get started.

1. Make Calls

Making calls to family and friends on their smartphones is an obvious way for seniors to use their smartphones.

Some tips for making calls include keeping a list of their favorite people in their contacts, setting up unique ringtones for their favorite contacts so that they know who is calling, and choosing a phone plan that offers unlimited talk and text.

Additionally, using voice commands and speakerphones can make calling easier.

2. Search the Internet 

Seniors can use their smartphones to stay connected and enjoy their lives. Some examples of ways that seniors can use their smartphones to access the Internet include using apps like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, accessing websites, and downloading apps.

Or, they can simply use a search engine when they need a piece of information or are looking for a hint to their favorite puzzle.

3. Send Emails

Smartphones make managing email accounts a breeze. There are a variety of apps that allow seniors to easily send and receive emails. Some popular apps include Gmail, Yahoo Mail, and Outlook.com.

Seniors can also use their smartphones to manage their email accounts and schedule updates. They can also conduct necessary business via email instead of having to call.

4. Record Memories of Special Times

There are many good reasons to take photos and videos of special times.

They can be used as reminders of happy moments or as a keepsake to show friends and family years from now. In addition, taking photos and videos can help seniors feel a connection with their loved ones, even if they live far away.

By using a smartphone, they can easily take pictures and videos of family gatherings or special events without having to worry about taking up too much space on film or memory cards.

5. Play Games

There are many different types of games that can be played on smartphones.

Some popular games that seniors can enjoy on their smartphones include puzzle games, racing games, and action games. These types of games are perfect for keeping seniors mentally active and entertained.

Puzzle games allow seniors to exercise their logical thinking skills. In contrast, racing games test their speed and agility, and action games let them take on challenging missions or battles.

Some of the most popular smartphone apps for seniors include Crossy Road, Temple Run 2 (available at the Apple App Store and Google Play), and Fruit Ninja.

6. Get GPS Directions

Smartphones can be used for many things, but one of the most popular uses is directions. There are several applications that offer directions, but one of the best is Google Maps.

This application provides turn-by-turn directions to your current location and routes to destinations you specify. You can also add notes about your route, so you don’t have to keep track of everything while driving.

This application will also offer real-time traffic updates and weather conditions if you have a compatible device. These apps can even give walking directions when they aren’t in a car and are looking for a particular place.

7. Find Places to Eat or Shop Nearby

Seniors can use smartphones to find places to eat or shop nearby. For example, they can search for restaurants near their home or shops with discounts available.

They can also use the location services on their smartphone to find out where specific places are located. Then, driving or walking directions are available at the touch of a button.

ways seniors use smartphones friends and family
With a smartphone, it is easier and faster to keep up with family and friends.

8. Keep Up with Friends and Family

Keeping up with friends and family is easy to do with a smartphone. You can use social media applications to communicate with your friends and family. You can also use messaging applications to send pictures, videos, and messages to the grandkids.

You can even use voice recognition software to type out your messages instead of using those tiny keyboards.

9. Get Information about Events or News

Smartphones can be used to access nearly instantaneous information about events or news. For example, a senior could use their smartphone to access the news while waiting in line at the grocery store or while sitting on the bus.

Alternatively, a senior could use their smartphone to access information about events in their community or around the world. This type of information could help a senior stay up-to-date on what is happening in the world around them.

10. Keep a Diary or Journal

By writing down their thoughts, feelings, and experiences, seniors can explore their life in more detail and reflect on what they have accomplished. Journals can also be a source of comfort when difficult memories or emotions arise.

By keeping a diary or journal, seniors can connect with past memories and build positive future goals. Many journal apps are available for smartphones, and many support voice recognition, so they can just speak their words!

11. Make Appointments and Reservations

Appointments and reservations are essential parts of life. Seniors can use smartphones to make appointments and reservations easily. With an app like BookedIn Pro or Booking.com, they can easily find and book appointments without leaving their homes.

This saves them time and money and ensures that they always have what they need when it comes to scheduling medical appointments or making other critical engagements.

12. Check on Financial Matters

One crucial way seniors can use smartphones is to keep a check on their financial matters. Smartphones can keep track of bank accounts, bills, and expenses. Additionally, apps that help with budgeting and tracking finances are available on many smartphones.

These apps can provide seniors with a better understanding of their spending patterns and help them make necessary changes to live comfortably while avoiding debt.

13. Manage Their Social Calendar

Seniors can use smartphones to manage their social calendars. They can see what events are happening nearby and RSVP for them quickly and easily.

They can also see what other seniors are doing and plan activities with them. Plus, calendar apps can serve as reminders so that important events aren’t forgotten.

14. Track Fitness Progress

There are many apps available for smartphones that can track fitness progress and steps taken. Apps like Step Counter (available on Google Play) and MyFitnessPal can track how many steps are taken each day, how many calories have been burned, and how much weight has been lost.

These apps can also keep a diary of what foods were eaten and how much exercise was done each day. This information can help seniors stay physically active and healthy throughout their retirement years.

15. Get Social Media Updates

One of the great benefits of smartphones for seniors is staying connected to old friends and far-flung family members.

Smartphones allow seniors to stay in touch with people they care about, whether it’s catching up on what’s been going on in their lives or getting timely updates about what’s happening around them.

Some people prefer to keep up with social media updates through their phones, while others prefer text messages or phone calls. It really depends on the individual and what feels most comfortable. Whatever method works best for a senior should be used!

ways seniors use smartphones finance and health tips
Seniors can access financial and health tips via their smartphones.

16. Get Financial and Health Tips

It can be challenging for seniors to find ways to save money and stay healthy in the current economy. Luckily, there are many ways that seniors can use smartphones to access financial and health information. Of course, it is essential for them to only use reliable sources!

17. Access Medical Information and Services Easily

Several apps provide a searchable medical information database and connect seniors with health care professionals in their local area. Additionally, these apps offer a variety of features such as health tips, medication reminders, and social networking capabilities.

Seniors can ensure that they are always up-to-date on their health care needs and remain connected with the medical community. Today, many hospitals are even booking appointments and services online, so it is vital that seniors learn this valuable skill.

RELATED: Teaching Grandparents How to Use a Smartphone

18. Enjoy Entertainment

There are many different ways seniors can use smartphones to enjoy their entertainment. For music, they can listen to music on Spotify, Pandora, or other streaming services. They can also watch videos on Netflix, Hulu, or YouTube.

For games, they can play games on apps like Candy Crush or Angry Birds. They can also play board games like Monopoly or RISK online (available at the Apple App Store and Google Play).

Finally, seniors can use apps like Flipboard or The New York Times to stay up to date on the latest news for news and information.

19. Experiment with New Recipes

Experimenting with new recipes can be a fun way to spend an afternoon. And, there are literally millions of recipes on the web and apps to help you curate them.

Not only will you learn new cooking techniques, but you’ll also be able to create delicious dishes that you may never have tried before. Plus, who doesn’t love trying something new?

20. Check Weather Conditions

Many apps allow seniors and the elderly to check weather conditions and plan their day accordingly.

Some examples of these apps are AccuWeather, NOAA Weather Radio (available at the Apple App Store and Google Play), The Weather Channel (available at the Apple App Store and Google Play), and The Daily Mail.

Many social media websites and cell phones display weather information and alerts right on the main screen.

21. Save Money at Retailers and Grocery Stores

By using smartphones, seniors can save money on their groceries and other purchases by having online access to coupons and sales flyers.

They can quickly and easily compare prices at multiple retailers and even purchase and have the items shipped to them directly to their home 


Smartphones can be a valuable tool for seniors to stay connected and enjoy their lives. By using these 21 tips, seniors can stay connected and have fun while staying on top of their financial and health care needs. Plus, they can stay entertained and learn new things!

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Certified Senior Advisor (CSA)®
Assistive Technology Professional

Scott Grant has spent more than 20 years serving seniors and the elderly in the home medical equipment industry. He has worked as a manufacturer's rep for the top medical equipment companies and a custom wheelchair specialist at a durable medical equipment (DME) provider in WV. He is father to 4 beautiful daughters and has three terrific grandkids. When not promoting better living for older adults, he enjoys outdoor activities including hiking and kayaking and early morning runs.

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