best remotes for seniors

7 Best Remotes for Seniors & the Elderly [2024]

In Remotes: Other by Tim Brennan

Affiliate Disclosure

As an Amazon affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

In this post, I am pleased to provide recommendations for the best remotes for seniors and the elderly that you can get right now.

My top picks for the best universal remotes for seniors and the elderly are:


“Growin’ Old Ain’t For the Weak”

My fiesty mom, who was plagued by various ailments up until the time of her death at age 86, had a saying. She often told me, “Timothy, Growin’ old ain’t for the weak.”

best remotes for seniors

It is hard to watch our loved ones get old. As seniors age, it often becomes more difficult to control their TV using a traditional remote control.

Our elders with arthritis, Parkinson’s, or even Alzheimer’s or dementia may be unable to use a remote effectively because of a variety of reasons. These can include reduced motor skills and poor eyesight.

This can be frustrating for seniors who otherwise derive much of their pleasure from TV watching. Let’s face it. For many seniors, TV is a big part of their daily and evening activities. A recent study by MedicineNet revealed that people over age 65 spend more than 25% of their waking hours watching TV.

As a son who lost two elderly parents last year, I recall all too well the challenges dear Nannie and Poppie had with their remotes. I provided many “technical support” visits to help fix TV problems, almost always related to their cable or TV remotes. This was often done at odd hours to get them back on track with their all-important TV schedules (Judge Judy and Meet the Press, LOL).

Luckily, there are now universal remote controls that make it easier for mom and dad (or grandma and grandpa) to watch their favorite shows. There are plenty of options depending on needs, and many of them are super affordable. I hope this blog post helps you find something that works best for your loved ones.


Best Remotes for Seniors: Top 3 Comparison

Here is a comparison of my top picks for the best remotes for seniors. I will go into more detail about all of my picks below.

Flipper Big Button Universal TV Remote - Seniors, Elderly - Simple, Works TV & Cable - Favorite Channels - Learning - Supports IR Devices
Amazon Fire TV Cube, Hands-free streaming device with Alexa, Wi-Fi 6E, 4K Ultra HD
Universal Big Button TV Remote - EasyMote | DT-R08B. Backlit, Easy Use, Smart, Learning Television & Cable Box Controller, Perfect for Assisted Living Elderly Care. White TV Remote Control…
Flipper Big Button Remote
Fire TV Cube
Continuous TV Remote
Large Buttons
Voice Control
Number of Buttons
5
N/A
6
Dimensions
7 x 2 x 2 inches
3.38” x 3.38” x 2.99” (86 mm x 86 mm x 77 mm)
5 x 2.25 x 0.9 inches
Weight
5 ounces
513g (1.13 lbs)
2.25 ounces
$29.99
$114.99
Price not available
Flipper Big Button Universal TV Remote - Seniors, Elderly - Simple, Works TV & Cable - Favorite Channels - Learning - Supports IR Devices
Flipper Big Button Remote
Large Buttons
Voice Control
Number of Buttons
5
Dimensions
7 x 2 x 2 inches
Weight
5 ounces
$29.99
Amazon Fire TV Cube, Hands-free streaming device with Alexa, Wi-Fi 6E, 4K Ultra HD
Fire TV Cube
Large Buttons
Voice Control
Number of Buttons
N/A
Dimensions
3.38” x 3.38” x 2.99” (86 mm x 86 mm x 77 mm)
Weight
513g (1.13 lbs)
$114.99
Universal Big Button TV Remote - EasyMote | DT-R08B. Backlit, Easy Use, Smart, Learning Television & Cable Box Controller, Perfect for Assisted Living Elderly Care. White TV Remote Control…
Continuous TV Remote
Large Buttons
Voice Control
Number of Buttons
6
Dimensions
5 x 2.25 x 0.9 inches
Weight
2.25 ounces
Price not available

Last update on 02/14/2024 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


#1 – Flipper Big Button Remote

My first choice is this popular and well-rated remote from Flipper. Yes! This is just like the dolphin for those of you who remember that popular 80s family show.

best remotes for seniors flipper

What makes this remote special is that it is specifically designed for the elderly, people with low vision, and those that have Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. It is one of the simplest remotes out of all those featured here, and it has nice large buttons.

It’s very simple to use, with basic features that include programming your favorite channels to remote locking to avoid any accidental clicks. This is an infrared (IR)-based remote, which means you can use it to control most TV and cable boxes out there.

📚 Related: Flipper Remote Review

Features

  • Just five buttons make this remote super easy to understand and use for the elderly.
  • You can program a list of favorites for up to 25 channels.
  • Compatible with all IR devices like TVs, satellite and cable boxes, and Comcast, Xfinity, soundbars, and more.
  • It has three functions keys for on/off, channel change, and volume.
  • Good gift for the elderly who have health issues like dementia or Alzheimer’s or just bad vision.
  • Easy to flip through channels.
  • Easy to use and comes with a lock feature to stop accidental programming.
  • Comes with an instruction manual in case the senior user needs help navigating it.

Pros

  • Easy to set up.
  • Easy to use.
  • Intuitive design.
  • Easy to hold.
  • Simple volume and channel controls.
  • Durable.
  • Comes with good tech support.

Cons

  • Requires two AAA batteries that must be bought separately. I recommend that you purchase rechargeable batteries at Amazon.

Video

Here is a nice video that I found out on YouTube that demonstrates how easy this remote is to set up.

Video Credit: FlipperRemote


#2 – Fire TV Cube With Alexa

The product is a great way to introduce a new generation of cord-cutters to the joys of watching internet content on their TVs. With a single voice command, users can call up any TV show, movie, or sports event available on Amazon Prime. This makes it perfect for senior people as it eliminates the remote problem by adding voice control.

The only downside would be the setup of this device is a bit technical for an elderly person. That’s why the Fire TV Cube would be best gifted with a side of tech support by you. I’m sure your favorite seniors would appreciate your visit almost as much as the gift.

I own one of these myself and love it. Fire TV Cube supports all popular streaming services like Netflix and Hulu. It also supports 4K streaming. Plus, its easy voice navigation with Alexa and affordable price point have put it ahead of other streamers like Apple TV and Google Chromecast.

📚 Related: Alexa Fire TV Cube Commands

Features

  • Seniors can control the TV with their voices using Alexa.
  • Compatible with Bluetooth speakers, gaming controllers, and headphones.
  • Voice controls IR-enabled devices like cable and satellite boxes, TVs, and soundbars.
  • Has HDMI, micro-USB, and wired IR ports.
  • Built-in privacy controls.
  • Internal storage of 16 GB and RAM of 2 GB.
  • Provides access to popular streaming services like Amazon Prime, Netflix, and YouTube from a single interface.

Pros

  • Lots of 4K streaming options.
  • Hands free control of TV via voice.
  • Offers better storage than newer Fire TV devices.
  • Supports many popular Alexa commands like weather, news, and sports.

Cons

  • This may be a bit too technical to set up for many seniors.
  • HDMI cable sold separately.

Video

Here is a great video review of Fire TV Cube that I found over on YouTube.

Video Credit: ModernDad


#3 – Continuous TV Remote

Next on my list of best remotes for seniors is this little streamlined remote.

It doesn’t get any simpler than this remote. With just six large buttons that light up vibrantly, it makes a great gift for the elderly living at home or in a nursing home.

It even comes with a wrist strap to prevent misplacement, and it is compatible with most TVs and many popular streaming devices.

I could so see my mom “wearing” this around the house.

Features

  • It can control both the television and the cable box at the same time.
  • Navigating is a piece of cake with this remote’s simple design.
  • Works well with all major infrared television sets and set-top boxes.
  • Has just six large and bright buttons for basic functions.
  • Buttons are easy to see and use at night because they are backlit.
  • The remote comes with a wrist strap so that it is never misplaced.
  • Learning mode that can be used to customize the buttons.
  • 90-day money-back guarantee.
  • Full-time tech support team in the USA.

Pros

  • Big and bright buttons.
  • Simple design.
  • Backlit buttons.
  • Wrist strap.
  • Quick Search enables easy navigation.

Cons

  • Batteries are not included.


#4 – SMPL Universal Remote

SMPL Universal Large Button TV Remote is a universal remote control specially designed for seniors. It has large buttons that are easy to access and navigate. Set favorite channels, and power on devices in one click. It can connect with all TVs and set-top boxes with an IR receiver.

This remote can be used by seniors who might have difficulty using traditional remotes due to their button size, complexity, and discomfort.

Features

  • The TV and set-top box can be turned on with the One Touch feature.
  • Seniors can navigate among five favorite channels with One Touch.
  • Compatible with almost all televisions and set-top boxes that have an IR receiver.
  • Made of ABS plastic and is small enough to fit into one hand.
  • The manufacturer offers live technical support.

Pros

  • Easy to use and easy to hold.
  • Easy to remove battery cover.

Cons

  • Not the most impressive design. Numbers could confuse some seniors.
  • Limited functionality.

Video

Here is a nice video from the Alzheimer’s Store that shows how easy it is to use this remote.

Video Credit: The Alzheimer’s Store


#5 – Ziezii Universal TV Remote

The Ziezii is one of the best remotes for seniors for two reasons: simplicity and cost-effectiveness.

It is easy to use, soft to the touch, and compatible with all major streaming devices through IR. Like most remotes designed for the elderly, this remote also has a streamlined button set while providing what is needed to help seniors enjoy their TV.

Features

  • Big buttons make navigation quick and easy for those with bad eyesight
  • Works for all television sets, cable boxes and set-top boxes, DVD players, and VCRs with IR functionality.
  • Straightforward play, pause, fast forward and rewind buttons are great for seniors who like to stream shows and movies.
  • Has the capacity to learn the codes of the original remote.
  • Made of high-grade ABS material.
  • 30-day return policy and one-year quality warranty.

Pros

  • Easy to control the television and cable box with its simple design.
  • Comes with warranty.
  • Lightweight and ergonomic design.
  • Made of durable materials.

Cons

  • Does not support Bluetooth television sets.


#6 – Nettch 2-Device Remote

The Nettch Sony RM-EZ4 2-Devi is another remote that’s simple to use and compatible to work with multiple brands of TVs, including Sony. This remote can be used for both cable and satellite TV. Whether your favorite senior is forgetful or just likes to watch TV, memory backups are made to protect setup codes from being lost, even when replacing batteries.

Features

  • Almost identical to the previous model which makes it an upgrade that is easy to use.
  • Comes with a 30-day return policy and a quality warranty.
  • Has LED lighting for feedback while programming.

Pros

  • Lightweight and easy to use.
  • Budget friendly.
  • Good for those who want a minimum number of buttons.
  • Memory feature makes it easy to recall recently used channels.

Cons

  • Does not come with batteries.


#7 – RCA 3-Device Remote

This remote is currently Amazon’s Choice, and I can see why. It is affordable, has almost every feature you could expect in a universal remote, and is compatible with most TV brands. While not as simple as some of the other remotes here, it is still relatively easy to use, and has fewer buttons than the conventional remote, yet it still offers the same experience as a normal TV remote.

Seniors can navigate their favorite channels, record their favorite shows (if they have a DVR), and connect to streaming devices like Roku with special streaming controls.

Features

  • Can control up to three devices at a time through long-range infrared signaling.
  • Compatible with televisions, VCRs, DVD players, satellite and cable boxes, streaming devices like Roku, Apple TV, and more.
  • Works for devices from most major brands like Hisense, Samsung, TCL, LG, Sony, and Toshiba.
  • Can be set up using automatic or manual methods based on brands or codes.

Pros

  • Long infrared range which means the TV can be controlled from a distance.
  • Can be used for streaming devices.
  • Easy to set up.
  • Bigger buttons than those remotes suppied by the major cable carriers.

Cons

  • The documentation is poorly written and hard to follow.


FAQ

What is the easiest TV remote for seniors to use?

Answer: The Flipper Remote is often recommended as the easiest TV remote for seniors. Its user-friendly design, featuring large buttons and a simplified interface, makes it particularly suitable for those who may find complex devices challenging.

How do universal remotes benefit seniors?

Answer: Universal remotes simplify the user experience for seniors by consolidating control of multiple devices into one device. They usually feature large, clearly labeled buttons and a straightforward layout, which helps minimize confusion and improve accessibility.

Are there voice-activated remotes suitable for seniors?

Answer: Yes, the Fire TV Cube is a great option for seniors interested in voice-activated remotes. It allows users to control their TV and other devices using voice commands, which can be particularly helpful for those with mobility or vision challenges.

What features should I look for in a senior-friendly remote control?

Answer: Ideal features in a senior-friendly remote include large, tactile buttons, high contrast colors for better visibility, a simple layout, and ease of programming. Essential functions like volume control and channel surfing should be straightforward, without additional complexities.


Best Remotes for Seniors: The Bottom Line

When your loved ones reach an age when it gets hard to see or hold one of those traditional complex remotes provided by the major cable companies, a senior-friendly remote is a gift they will cherish. This counts double if you deliver it in person.

However, choosing one of the best remotes for seniors can be challenging. The size of the remote, the shape and size of buttons, the size of labeling, backlighting, wrist strap, battery type, and life are all factors to consider.

I hope you found this helpful. Which remote would work best for your favorite senior(s)?

Please leave me a comment below and let me know. I would love to hear from you.

Oh, and please take good care of yourself. Growin old ain’t for sissys.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tim Brennan

Tim Brennan is a technology blogger and hosts the @TecTimmy YouTube channel. He writes about smart homes at oneSmartcrib, home theaters at UniversalRemoteReviews, and AI in writing at Writeinteractive. A graduate of Northeastern University School of Journalism, he has written about technology for 30 years. Tim lives on the ocean in Nahant, Massachusetts.


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