Best Laptops for Seniors
Staying connected with family and friends is an important part of a happy, quality life for seniors. When transportation and mobility are limited, seniors need a way to stay in touch with the people they love.
Phone calls are great options but modern technology allows for more personal, visual connections. For example, it is a more gratifying experience to see your grandchildren on the screen of a laptop rather than simply hearing their voices. Many seniors shy away from electronic devices thinking it is too complicated or challenging to learn. There are many popular, easy to use laptops for seniors on the market, however, and some even include free training.
The best laptops for seniors are designed with specific needs in mind. In addition to helping loved ones stay connected, laptops also provide great options for entertainment and news outlets. Books on tape have transformed to books online. While some seniors are concerned about being scammed, there are ways to prevent scams from occurring.
The lives of seniors are being enriched through the daily use of laptops. Reasons for owning a personal computer vary from convenience to connectivity, and information to entertainment. Many popular laptop brands are available with plenty of great features for seniors. Read on to learn about the best laptops for seniors, their price ranges and where you can get one.
Top Laptop Brands for Seniors
Brand name recognition is an important factor for choosing a laptop to purchase.
The first portable computer was released in 1981, meaning senior citizens today did not grow up using such technology. Because using the new tech is a largely unfamiliar process, seniors look to familiar brand names to provide reliable, easy to use products they can trust.
Some of the top, trusted laptop brands for seniors include:
Where to Purchase Laptops for Seniors
There is no shortage of options for seniors to purchase popular laptops today. Amazon.com is one of the most popular online retail marketplaces in the world. Walmart also sells laptops for seniors online and in its stores. Deciding whether to buy a laptop online or in a store depends on mobility and independence. Having a salesperson offer valuable information in person can offer a sense of comfort. Fortunately, sales support is also available over the phone, via email and even live chat windows. Many familiar retailers such as Target sell laptops both online and in its stores. Online prices tend to feature more special sales and discounts, especially around major holidays such as Black Friday, Labor Day and New Years. Several more options include:
Learn How to Use Your Laptop
Overcoming the technology learning curve is an issue concerning most seniors considering a new laptop purchase. Some manufactures such as Apple realize this and offer free laptop training classes for seniors. Independent sources such as YouTube have endless amounts of tutorials on subjects such as setting up Wi-Fi, customizing desktops, adjusting monitor resolution and more. In fact, most manufacturers now have how-to, video walkthroughs already online for their products.
There are plenty of additional training options. Community colleges have basic computer classes available. Knowing the importance of seniors staying active and connected with family, even Medicare has a host of free classes designed specifically to teach seniors how to use laptops.
What Type of Laptop Do I Need?
The type of laptop a senior needs depends largely on its purpose. Active seniors need a laptop with a lot of durability. Seniors using a laptop for entertainment purposes need a larger screen size and better speakers. Laptops used for Zoom or Skype sessions with family or friends need a strong, reliable Wi-Fi setup. Gaming and graphic arts functions need a laptop with a strong graphics processer and computer processing power. Some seniors need a laptop with larger keys on the keyboard for ease of typing, or with a lower weight for ease of carrying. The most important thing when deciding on a type of laptop is to understand its purpose and the situations in which it will be used.
What to Look for In a Senior Laptop
All laptops have similar basic features. There are various screen sizes. Internal memory and storage space are important to understand. Every laptop has an internal hard drive where applications, files and other data are saved. The size of the internal hard drive determines how much data can be stored on the laptop. This is important when saving pictures, music and videos. There is also RAM (Random Access Memory) to consider. RAM determines how many programs can smoothly operate at once, and at what speeds. Graphics cards, GPU and CPU processor speeds also determine operational quality and speed. Additionally, some laptops come with larger keys for ease of typing and built-in security software to protect against viruses and scams.
Senior Laptop Prices
New laptop prices vary based on features and range from under two hundred dollars into the thousands. The HP 11.6” Chromebook is $169 at Best Buy, has basic features and lightweight portability. A new MacBook Air is also lightweight and portable but has extensive powerful features and is priced starting at $999 directly through Apple.
Dell Inspiron models provide great value for the money, priced starting at $313.59. Inspiron models with more features range in price up to $1371.99. The HP Laptop–15t boasts long battery life, portability and durability. MSRP through HP starts at $959.99 before taxes. The Samsung Galaxy Book Flex starts at $949.99 when trading in an old laptop. This laptop is great for entertainment, has a powerful brilliant display and is capable of being converted into a tablet for flexible viewing angles.
How to Avoid Technology Scams Online
Most laptops come equipped with anti-virus software. Occasionally, harmful software programs still sneak through the firewalls. Seniors need to be alert for pop-up ads and malware claiming the security of their laptop has been compromised and instant technical service is required. Never randomly allow remote access control of your laptop to a person contacting you in unsolicited fashion. The AARP also offers scam and fraud prevention support while also posting live tracking of active computer viruses and scams around the world.