Simple Launcher for elderly people


Nov 14, 2013
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I'm wondering if there a customizable launcher available for elderly people who aren't exactly fluent in technology.

Ideally, I'd like to have something that would allow me to customize what "apps" appear on the phone, like:

- Phone
- Text Messages
- Ringer on/off
- Camera
- Gallery

Ideally, the full app drawer would be disabled for this user. But me as a "admin" of the phone would still be able to access everything if I need to.

Further from this, it'd be nice if I could restrict what numbers or contacts are able to text or call this phone.

I'm just wanting to know if there's a way to better foolproof a smartphone so that it's just a simple phone. Not sure of where to begin my search or even if something like this is even remotely available.

Javier P

Feb 21, 2014
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There are some launchers oriented to older people like Big, Simple and others. I haven't used any of them, so I can't tell you how good, or bad, they are.

All the things you want to achieve can be done with a well known launcher like Nova. I set my parents phone with Nova in a similar way and it worked perfectly. These are some of the first steps I would recommend you:

- Change the grid to fit your layout.
- Make the icons bigger.
- Select to open the drawer as "other" and you can set a complicated gesture to open it (swipe up with two fingers, for example).
- Create an screen with direct dial widgets for their favourite contacts (same can be done for texts). After this you can change the icon for a picture of the contact to make access even easier.
- Lock the desktop to avoid accidental changes.

For some of these options (gestures) you'll need the paid version of Nova, completely worthy. You can install the free version first and see if you like it before paying for the Prime one.

To block calls and texts you need to set their dialer, contacts and texting apps. That option is not controllable by the launcher.

If you decide to use Nova let me know and I can help you to set their phone.

J Dubbs

Well-known member
Jun 4, 2016
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It might be simpler to just get them flip phones.... that's what I had to end up doing for my dad. He's happy as can be with his flip phone, he said he'll never touch another smartphone again lol.

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