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grandPad Tablet Aims To Connect Seniors

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015 by | Filed Under: Android
 
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The developers of a new Android tablet service say their aim is to keep seniors connected with their families. They’ve developed the grandPad senior tablet, a device targeted at those the makers call “super seniors” 75 and up.  The company feels they may be overwhelmed by new technology. Since younger people depend more and more on devices like tablets and smartphones and increasingly use social media for communication, seniors can get left out of the loop. The idea behind this device is to make communication easier by focusing on basic tasks like video calls and e-mails.

grandpad

The grandPad runs a highly-customized version of Android and limits apps to what the developers feel seniors need and want.  For example, instead of seeing an entire Facebook feed, the grandPad would pull photos and videos a few at a time from the feeds of relatives and friends to show the user.

grandpad1

The tablet sticks to using just a few apps with big, bold icons to simplify things.

The service will  also help users select music that it thinks you might want to hear and give you a selection of  four approved games for playing.  Currently is comes with Solitaire, Four in a Row, Memory and TicTacToe. So, if you’re a big Candy Crush fan, this tablet wouldn’t work for you.

It controls incoming video calls to permit only approved contacts from calling the owner. To contact a user on the grandPad, friends and family would need to download a special app on their devices.

grandpads3

The 7 inch tablet has no passwords to set up, either.  Plus it comes with a built-in 4G LTE connection, so users are always online. You aren’t purchasing a tablet, you’re subscribing to a service with a monthly fee. That fee also comes with 24-hour customer support.

grandpadsitting

That fee is $60 a month. That can seem a little pricey since you can buy a 7 inch Android tablet for not much more than that and connect it to your current wireless Internet connection.  Interestingly enough, this device does not include a web-browser. The thought behind that is that browsing the web can be too overwhelming for some people and they would prefer to have their content managed by someone else.

ladywithgrandpad

Whether or not this tablet would work for you would probably depend on how much control you want over you content. If you’d prefer to be able to browse around for your own music and check entire Facebook feeds and choose whatever games you want from the Google Play Store, you could find this tablet restrictive.

On the other hand, if you find yourself overwhelmed by the prospect of all that information, it might work.

I purchased an Android tablet for a “super-senior” relative, and while I think she would appreciate the simplicity of a tablet like this, I know she wants a tablet that allows her to play her favorite Facebook games, check out everyone’s Facebook feed and that she likes to explore the Internet on her own.  And while I didn’t mind spending a little over $100 on a tablet with a keyboard, $720 a year for tablet, might be a little steep.

You can learn more about the grandPad here.

~ Cynthia

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9 Responses to “grandPad Tablet Aims To Connect Seniors”

  1. Ann Thomas says:

    I am in my 80s and still using XP on my PC. Have been looking into tablets, but have not yet settled on one. But grandPad would not be for me (after reading what you have to say about it). I still follow my stocks on the computer, and do some selling and buying. My husband and I have moved south from NYS amd most days pull up 3 newspapers from our northern homes to keep abreast of what is going on up there.

  2. ANJ says:

    They must be kidding. This is not only insulting, it’s stupid. I have an android tablet and I use only what I want to use. And $60 a month? Did Android ever hear of limited income. Thanks for the tip,
    Bottom line. Don’t waste your money on this.

    • cynthia says:

      To be clear, this isn’t offered by Google (the company behind the Android OS) this is a separate company making an offer of this service using Android tablets.

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  4. Sandy says:

    I would never pay $60.00 a month for a Tablet. It’s like robbing the Seniors.
    Very disappointing and disgusting.Shame on You!!!

  5. Roberta says:

    While I agree with some comments, here is mine:
    Don’t kill the messenger! These guys do a terrific job of trying to please all the people, all the time. It can’t be done, but bless them for trying.

  6. Bill Riley says:

    I work full time with seniors in a nursing home. The ones with computers and memory problems need an inordinate amount of help. Many frequently ask where there loved ones are all day! So this is not an insult. It’s a reality that Seniors decline at some point and need more help . This computer idea helps “super seniors” to stay connected which can prevent isolation, excessive cognitive decline, possibly help to preserve memory. From a rehab perspective it could be very helpful and there are a lot of rip off artists, hackers, viruses, Trojan horses, spyware, foreign nationals with ill intent so this could work for the 2 million in nursing homes that are tired of bingo!

  7. Karen Arilotta says:

    I would love for my Mom to have this, however she is on a fixed income and wouldn’t be able to afford $60.00 a month. If I didn’t have 5 Grandchildren I am helping with college tuition, I would be happy to pay the monthly charge myself. I hope the price for the monthly service comes down sometime in the near future so she could afford it.
    Love the idea!
    Karen

  8. Julie says:

    I agree this would not be appropriate for seniors who are using their computers handily. But my Mom has early stages of dementia and using a computer is now out of the question for her. She is very confused with passwords and “new” things like Facebook and Instagram, and feels completely cut off from relatives and friends since she also barely drives any more. This product seems to be exactly what she has been asking for – a way to see pictures and stay in touch that is so simple that she cannot get it off track. This may be for a niche market, but I am thrilled because it’s my Mom’s niche, and I believe it will greatly enrich her life as her memory declines. My brothers and I are planning to contribute $20/each per month to keep it going. There is no contract, so it can be returned at any time. If the tablet gets damaged for any reason, it is replaced for free. We’re going to give it a try.

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