Fujitsu’s Senior-Friendly Smartphone Is Heading For Europe
The Stylistic S01 will become available to users of France's Orange network starting in June. Writer David Meyer suggests that more manufacturers should be paying attention to this kind of accessibility.
For several years now, Fujitsu has offered a range of phones under the Raku-Raku label to elderly citizens in its native Japan. This June, it will take this technology beyond the country’s borders for the first time when it offers the Stylistic S01 to users of France’s Orange network. The S01, which runs a customized version of Android, doesn’t just contain larger icons: Its screen requires users to press those icons harder so that they don’t accidentally start up the wrong apps. It also includes a personal security alarm and audio features designed to accommodate older ears.
What’s the Big Idea?
Writer David Meyer notes that Fujitsu isn’t the only manufacturer to design phones specifically for senior citizens: Swedish company Doro makes special handsets, and it and other companies, including Sprint, offer application packs that allow modifications to Android tablets. However, Meyer says that there’s an important market to be tapped: “[W]ith an ageing population in much of the developed world…it’s actually quite surprising how few players are focusing on the accessibility angle today.”