Drawbacks: voice dialing, speed dialing
Overall this is a decent priced phone plan. The numbers display large and are easy to read. I use my phone between 0-15 minutes a month. I am on the 50 min/mo plan. I am mostly homebound and have a land line. When I do travel into town or with my spouse I use it to keep in touch with him. He is on a separate cell phone plan because he is active and uses a cell phone more.
One month I went over my minutes because I was in a hotel room on hold to a company and received/made calls 5 times to resolve a problem. After that happened I added 100 extra minutes to my plan so that would not happen again. That is a nice feature as they are good for a year.
Update: See comments below. Apparently, you can have GreatCall set up your phone so that voice dialing is active as soon as you flip open your phone. This addresses the point below.
The MAIN drawback is the voice dialing. It doesn't come installed. It is free but you must call and get it installed by them. I have used other cell phones that allow you to flip it open and say the name and it dials it directly. On a Jitterbug, there is no way to voice activate a number to dial without FIRST using your fingers to scroll to the correct screen area and find the voice dial feature that is installed. It is a third party application and does not remain "ready to use".
This to me, defeats the convenience of voice dialing. If I need to use my fingers and eyesight to get to the feature then I may as well do the same thing and get to the address book and autodial the number by pressing YES. Getting to the address book takes less steps and takes less time than getting to the voice dial screen.
Also the voice dial offers me the wrong option to dial every time and it takes numerous repeats to get it right. I often give up after the third repeated name. I have only 3 "numbers"- Dennis, Sue and Home and none work well with voice dialing. How it can confuse me saying Dennis (it thinks I say Sue or Home) is beyond me. If I say Sue it thinks I am saying Dennis or Home. If I say Home it thinks I am saying Dennis or Sue! Other phones (I have tried at least 4 carriers over the past 10 years) did not offer to voice dial wrong numbers or misinterpret my voice prompts so often.
The SECOND drawback is the voicemail. It is cumbersome. I spend a lot of time trying to find the YES and NO buttons to move ahead to the menu and pick up my voicemails. Often the screen tells me I have a voicemail but when I get there it says I don't have a voicemail. Still other times it never rings but then I get a voicemail tone and get the message. I have tested this by my husband in the same room, calling me and it never rings- just goes into voicemail.
No Speed Dial
The THIRD drawback is the voice and screen prompts. There is no way to just speed dial a number. I only call 3 numbers and I cannot just press 1 button. Each time I call I must use my sight and fingers and listen to voice prompts and work my way through the prompts to get to the number I need dialed.
4. The FOURTH drawback is the inability to dial from the history with pushing just one button. If my daughter calls me, I cannot just press the missed call or last call button. I need to enter her 7 digit number or use the screen prompts to get to the address book and then enter YES. There is no feature installed that allows dialing from captured history- it is only displayed as information.
I do not receive many calls. I rarely make calls. I need a phone that lets me flip open the lid and say or speed dial my husband or daughter to pick me up.
For my handicaps, a phone needs to have a one button press (speed dial) or an auto enabled voice dial when I open it. I do not like having to spend so much time and effort to get to a screen that lets me dial or voice dial- it is faster to punch in the 7 digit number I need.
I am thinking of leaving Jitterbug and going over to a track phone to get better the features I need. But this phone is very good if you don't mind the effort of wading through voice and screen prompts every time you make a call and the call plan is very well priced.