Review: Doro 8030 – the Android phone focused towards the elderly

Doro_8030_black_steel

Doro have one focus when it comes to making phones, and that is the ones among us who are near or past their retirement age. While the idea may sound condescending, the concept is simple. Make phones and smart phones that are simple to use, offer basic functionality, and give some extras that your average phone doesn’t. The Doro 8030 is a smartphone offering from the company with the same basic concept, but this one is actually built on Android.

Quick look at the specs and features

  • 4G connecitivy
  • Hearing Aid compatible
  • 5MP Camera
  • Doro’s own features such as My Doro Manager, Assistance button, etc.
  • Android 5.1
  • 4.5″ Screen, 854 x 480 pixels

Box contains

  • Doro 8030 in black
  • A battery that is packed separately (like the good old days)
  • Charger
  • Micro USB to USB Cable
  • Dock that can be used to charge the device

Look and feel

0Doro_8030_black_steel_frontCandy shaped, rounded, and simple, a few words I would use to describe this. the front features 3 physical buttons to give you the usual Android buttons, i.e. home, back and recent apps.

Along the side you have a camera button and the charging port on the right, and power and volume keys on the left.

0Doro_8030_black_steel_back

The top features a 3.5mm connection for the headset.

The back has a camera (without a flash) and the Assistance button.

Setup

The setup really separates this from the usual smart phone, and sets the tone for the way the phone will operate.

It asks you if the text is sized correctly for you, if it is loud enough, and the step by step tutorial will take you through setting up your WiFi connection (if you have one) and even get you to sign in to your Google account. Being an Android does mean that having a Google account is pretty vital to making the most of this phone.

After the setup, the basic screen allows you to do as you please.

The OS

While it runs Android, it is heavily skinned. The Home screen allows you to set up shortcuts, and a swipe to the left lets you access all of your apps. A swipe up lets you look at some other main short cuts which let you access features like the Camera, messages, Internet, Music or settings.

In My Apps is also the I Want  To button which lets you choose even more options. You can set up alarms, download apps, or set various contacts as your main 4 shortcuts on your home screen.

All the icons are big and visible, and they all come with easy to follow (and well worded) instructions that let you choose what you want to do.

As far as the system goes, it comes with Swiftkey installed straight out of the box, and if you don’t know what that is, it is one of the most popular keyboards for Android, and is definitely the preferred one for me. It also comes with AVG Antivirus installed out of the box for security.

Overall though, the OS is designed such that you will be forgiven if you do not think this is an Android phone at all. It will take a little getting used to those who already use various systems, but that is not a surprise for any new UI!

The Assistance button

This is one of the classic features that has been found in all Doro phones we have  tried. The button allows you to set a number and leave a message, which could either be an emergency styled/panic message, or just a message saying you’ve arrived. It can both be recorded or a phonetic one.

Doro also offer My Doro Manager and Doro Connect and Care to take these features even further.

System Performance

This is no flagship, in fact you will do well to find out data on how fast the processor is how much RAM is packed in. There is a bit of lag when opening certain apps, but overall the performance is okay and adequate. You will not be able to run any major games or perform video editing on this, but if you’re after something like that, you’re reading the wrong review.

Battery lasts a day easily, and all in all it performs well.

More information

More information on the Doro 8030 can be found on their website.

The website mentions it being £180, but it can be found nearer the £120-130 mark at various retailers such as O2 and Amazon.

Verdict

Doro have once again made a great phone for all the silver surfers among us. Smartphone usage is on the rise among older people, and Doro gives them an option they can easily use.

Sami Mughalhttps://www.oxgadgets.com
Can be found somewhere between designing new tech as an electronics engineer or testing new tech as a technology enthusiast. Lives mostly on Twitter, and would love to have a word with you there as @smacula.

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