MUG for senior citizens

I’m speaking at a Mac user group for senior citizens and wondering what 4-5 iOS topics i should address for iPhone 101. Suggestions?

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Medical ID
Password management

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Definitely going to do medical Id.

Wondering if camera or messages is next…

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I don’t know how you would sneak it in likely as a part of a conversation on the value of password management, but that they need to think about the importance of digital assets, those photos that only they have of there grandchildren on there phone.

It’s not quite iPhone 101 but it is important to think about alongside the basics of how to back up a phone.

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I am a technician in a MUG/clinic in an area with many seniors. Some topics that keep coming up:

  • iCloud (what’s stored in it, what’s stored on the device only, what happens when you delete an item)
  • photo management
  • how to use Share icon
  • Family Sharing, importance of couples not sharing individual Apple ids
  • importance of wiping a device before selling it or giving it to a family member (many seniors get hand-me-down phones)
  • password management
  • accessibility features such as large fonts, bold fonts

I find that many seniors (not knocking them, I am one) are stuck in a 1990s frame of mind. For example, many believe only the Firefox browser can be trusted, only Microsoft Word should be used for text documents, system updates have dangerous errors, new tech such as Apple Pay will expose you to evildoers, cloud services will expose your data, finding a phishing attempt in your mailbox means your system was hacked. My job would be easier if they limited themselves to the standard iOS apps and Apple services.


I’ve instructed elderly relatives. (And re-instructed them multiple times.)

There’s what’s especially important for seniors (eg Medical ID) … and then there’s iOS 101.

Don’t confuse the two.

To me, 101 would be (1) the basics of home screen, (2) touching/pinching/zooming/double-tapping, and (3) basic apps like Safari, Messages, Facetime.

And impress the need to keep safe and available one’s strong AppleID password (otherwise they can get locked out, and can’t update their apps and iOS.)

You don’t want to make the (first?) lesson too long, so I’d end with a taster of whatever cool things you think might make them interested in delving more deeply.

With home screen swipe-right-and-search, you would be amazed at how many people confuse that search for web browsing, how many people don’t comprehend the differences between email and Messages, or remember that Safari is the web browser.


Medical ID, Password Management, Camera (including how to save those pictures somewhere safe!), Messages

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Thanks. We address that a lot. The party line is, “pay the $1/mo!!!” Then they can have backups and peace of mind.

Thanks! These are all the topics that come up in our group. This particular class is probably a one time session at the senior center but any of these topics would be valuable for them. :slight_smile:

Great ideas. Thanks.

Be they twenty-three or eighty-three it great to find out where they are at. As members of a Mac users group they my have lots of skills or they may not.

You wrote

Or is it a Mac Use Group of — my wording/spin

But, you said iPhone 101, you may already know your audience mix.

Stereotypical response and presentations lead to mutually wasted time. Longwinded way of saying know your audience.
:thinking::dark_sunglasses: :eyeglasses:

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Agree with @JohnAtl, Facetime.

A fantastic app for elderly relatives to network with family.

It can have its funny moments, the first ever time I got my 80yr old mother to Facetime me she said “where did you get that nice picture of me on the wall behind you?”

Think about it… :joy:


Getting someone to accept that spending $1 a month for backup storage can be surprisingly difficult. I now start those conversations with “You can get 2TB of storage for $9.99 per month, 200GB for $2.99 per month OR the most popular plan of 50GB for .99¢ per month! Which plan fits YOUR requirements best?”

Family sharing also allows them to split iCloud data between accounts that are subscribed.

For those people who are resistant to using a credit card tied to their iTunes account… I suggest purchasing an iTunes gift card instead. $25 card gets them 25 months of coverage!

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Great tip on the iTunes card. :slight_smile:

My parents fall into this category Photos and how to backup would be top of my list