Thursday, July 13, 2017

When Should I Upgrade?

When should I upgrade?

This is a question I get a lot from other seniors.

Often they will ask “When my computer is 5 years old?

I  usually answer, if they have an old Windows tower, to upgrade to Windows 10 where possible. My five-year-old Dell Tower did require a cheap ram upgrade in order to run well.

Before buying anything new, however, I always suggest that they buy a cell phone first,  especially now that they can do so much with voice only.

This goes along with my philosophy of "doing it now" as opposed to later, since my smartphone is always with me.

Often I get the answer that they do not need a cell phone because they don't do that much phoning.      But cell phones nowadays do it all.     For a large screen  all it takes is a nearby TV and a Chromecast or Amazon stick to connect with cell phone.

That cell phone needs to be an inexpensive Android unlocked phone* coupled with a very cheap plan if necessary to use away from WiFi,  $10 a month for phoning away from WiFi,  and $25 a month for data away from WiFi such as for traffic information while driving.

An alternative is to get an iPad, especially if help is needed with a new device.    There was a lot of resistance to this alternative among seniors not long ago,  but no more.

A cheap alternative to iPad is a Kindle Fire 7 or 8,  but only if set up to use Google apps.    These tablets are too big to carry in your pocket and too small for a big screen.      They are a compromise.

For those fond of Windows,  a very inexpensive tablet will drive their old large display.    That tablet needs to be a quad core tablet with plenty of working RAM.

For those who do not want to put up with the many nuisances of Windows,  a Chromebook is a speedy and inexpensive trouble-free alternative. Here, consider also a new compatible printer.

If you do need a new large-screen,  consider a combo TV/monitor as opposed to a dedicated  monitor only.

*  My very inexpensive $30 Moto E phone obtained a few years ago does everything that I need to do.      The newer Moto G4 at $100 is a splendid phone.    

 Consumer Cellular offers a very attractive inexpensive plan, along with Puretalk,  Republic Wireless,  and FreedomPop.

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