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The GrandPad, launched in 2014, is an innovative tablet that makes all the best tools available to older adults. It can take the place of a tablet or a cell phone that seniors can use from home to stay connected and entertained. This device offers a simple and safe way for seniors to enjoy all the benefits of a tablet using Consumer Cellular's service. Read on to learn more about the GrandPad and find out if it's right for you or your loved one.
Consumer Cellular makes purchasing a GrandPad simple and fast. You can call to order or purchase online. I found their website to be helpful, clear, and easy to navigate. If you want to purchase a GrandPad from Consumer Cellular's website, here's how:
Did You Know: The number of seniors who use smartphones has increased over the years. Around 61 percent of all adults over 65 own a smartphone, a percentage that has risen by eight percent since 2012.1
Consumer Cellular's prices for the GrandPad are quite affordable, especially given the option to finance. The device itself is $149, or if financed, it's $29 down and $5 per month (with 0 percent interest). Considering an Apple iPad starts at around $449, the GrandPad is quite a steal.
It's important to note that you will also need to purchase the GrandPad service plan, which includes unlimited data usage. This will run you $40 per month, or a discounted $38 per month if you are an AARP member. Additionally, you may consider paying an extra $5 per month for the Asurion protection plan.
Money-Saving Tip: You can purchase the GrandPad from a handful of other retailers like Amazon, Walmart, or directly from GrandPad. However, we'd recommend purchasing from Consumer Cellular, as it's the most affordable option by far.
Overall, I found the GrandPad to be well worth the total cost. The ability to easily stay in touch with family and friends alone makes it worth its value.
If you decide to finance, you will owe 24 payments of $5 for the device over 24 months. No contract is required, and if you decide that after 30 days you aren't satisfied, you can cancel and pay nothing. There is also a one-year warranty to cover any defects with the device.
The GrandPad is different from your average iPad or Android tablet. Its features are uniquely tailored to seniors who desire a more straightforward way to stay in touch with loved ones. From the wireless charging cradle to video calls, games, and music, the GrandPad is easy for everyone to navigate.
The GrandPad is very intuitive. The home screen is clean and vibrant with large icons and text that labels each icon. The GrandPad icons include phone/video call, photos, music, games, camera, email, internet, weather, articles, and toolbox icons. They are large and easy to differentiate, making the GrandPad easy to navigate. The touch screen allows you to use the arrows to scroll through or simply swipe.
One of the most innovative features of the GrandPad is the Family Circle. The Family Circle creates a safe and secure way to keep older loved ones connected to all their family and friends. The GrandPad companion mobile app allows the administrator of the account, such as a loved one or caregiver, to add approved contacts. This ensures that only family and friends are able to contact the GrandPad owner.
Did You Know: A study from USC found that older adults facing social isolation were more likely to be victims of financial exploitation.2 The GrandPad can protect seniors through hand-picked content, preloaded contacts, and easier ways to connect.
This feature prevents scammers or spammers from contacting those with a GrandPad. The Family Circle contacts can connect using the phone and video call app, email, and even share photos. Family members can link the GrandPad to loved ones' social media feeds so that posted pictures are automatically shared to the GrandPad.
Video calls are an excellent way for older adults to stay connected with family and friends. Whether you live near or far from loved ones, the stressors of work and life can make staying connected challenging. Unfortunately, many seniors face loneliness, and this feeling of social isolation can come with health risks.3 Video calls are a great solution for encouraging regular social connection.
Did You Know: Along with the GrandPad, Consumer Cellular offers a variety of cell phones and phone plans for seniors. Visit our Consumer Cellular review to learn more.
The green phone icon on the GrandPad indicates phone calls. The GrandPad administrator can preload contacts with clear photos of their loved ones to easily click and call. Once you've tapped on a face, you will have the option to either make a video call or a phone call. Loved ones with the GrandPad app on their own devices will be able to answer the call. They will also receive an email notification whenever a call is placed to them.
I love the photo-sharing app in particular. When someone sends a photo to the GrandPad, the GrandPad user can record the sound of themselves commenting on the photo, and the response is sent to their loved one. This is especially helpful for older adults who find typing on a tablet challenging or time-consuming.
Pro Tip: Read our list of the best cell phones for seniors to learn why Consumer Cellular made the cut for its GrandPad and senior-friendly cell phones!
The internet browser is tailored to keeping the user safe. The GrandPad's administrator can preload websites, such as news outlets. It is also designed to prevent any inappropriate and scam-filled websites from popping up.
There is a “help” icon that I found to be particularly helpful. If an older adult is struggling to find something on the GrandPad, they can contact a support person. These customer service representatives are available 24 hours a day, every day. The icon is a clear, red help button with a large question mark on it. When the icon is selected, the screen shows the name and a photo of a support agent that is designated to you. You can then hit the green call button to reach the representative.
The GrandPad is an innovative tool for communication and entertainment. It allows older adults who struggle with standard tablets and smartphones to access tools that can improve their quality of life. Keep in mind that the GrandPad may not be right for everyone. The icons and tools are very simplistic, and while this is ideal for many older people, others might desire more freedom and advanced features on their devices.
When purchased through Consumer Cellular, the GrandPad is quite affordable. It is $149 for the device, and $40 a month for the service (or $38 for AARP members).
The GrandPad companion app is available on the Apple Store and Google Play. You can photo share, video chat, talk on the phone, email, and more. Those without a smartphone or tablet can also log in to GrandPad Central at central.grandpad.net to communicate with the GrandPad.
It’s very simple to do. As the administrator of the GrandPad account, you are able to curate the contacts and content available on the tablet. Your loved one will never have to type anything, and will not need to use any usernames or passwords.
No. Consumer Cellular allows you to use unlimited data on the GrandPad. You also get unlimited calls and music streaming.
Pew Research Center. (2022). Share of those 65 and older who are tech users has grown in the past decade.