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LifeFone Review (2024)

At-Home & On-the-Go Medical Alert Services
By Juliette SeigfriedBy Juliette Seigfried -
Last Updated: Oct 15, 2023
939 reviews
by
logo-LIFEFONE
Visit Site
Monthly Monitoring Fees
$29.95-$49.95
Connection
Cellular, landline, WiFi
Activation Fees
None

Our Verdict


Is LifeFone Worth Signing Up For?

LifeFone medical alert systems run the gamut from inexpensive at-home alert buttons connected via landline to on-the-go pendants with cellular tracking and mobile apps for caregivers. These systems are competitively priced, have good features and range, and are backed by a respected company that’s been in business for over half a century. 

Monthly Monitoring Fees
$29.95-$49.95
Connection
Cellular, landline, WiFi
Activation Fees
None

LifeFone at a Glance

9.8
Editorial Score

Products

6 solutions; Medical alert smartwatch; Wearable wrist and pendant options
10.0

Features

Fall detection; Waterproof; 2-way communication
10.0

Connectivity/Mobility

At-home, on-the-go and combined solutions; Landline, cellular and GPS connectivity available
10.0

Alerts

US-based monitoring center responds to help button or falls. Calls and provides 24/7 emergency support
10.0

Online Experience

User-friendly website; Mobile app for caregivers
9.0

LifeFone Pros & Cons

PROS

No up-front fees
Long-range at-home devices
Sleek on-the-go devices

CONS

Mobile app requires the most expensive plan
No smartwatch option

Top LifeFone Reviews

Ka
Kathy
We have been very pleased with the…
We have been very pleased with the customer service LifeFone has provided these last two+ years. Our mother has needed help a couple times, and the representatives who contacted us were kind, patient, and helpful.
DM
Diane De Micco
Lifefone has delivered excellent…
Lifefone has delivered excellent service during setup and since. I have the system for over 2 years and have never had an issue with them. I needed help twice and I pushed the button and had help very quickly and with compassion. I would recommend this company to anyone who could possibly need help with a lift assist or a trip to a hospital.
TC
Teresa and Chris Cooper
My mom used her lifefone pendant and…
My mom used her lifefone pendant and immediately got a response. She told the call center she was in distress. They dispatched and ambulance to her home then proceeded to call the family. Unfortunately each member couldn’t be spoken with directly and a message was left. The ambulance arrived open her door using the key lock door box assisted her and took her to the hospital. She was OK due to their quick action. My only “complaint “ is the call showed on my phone as central station, not lifefone. I was on my way into a meeting and did not answer. Wishing it said Lifefone I would have answered immediately as would have my brother. Regardless my mom is fine due to Lifefone’s quick response. Thank you
See all LifeFone reviews

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LifeFone LifeFone Visit Site

Overview

LifeFone Features – Products & Equipment

LifeFone’s five different hardware options offer a good range of choices depending on your needs. The biggest choice to make is whether you want a solution that only works in one location (At-Home) or one that works anywhere you are in the country (On-The-Go), though most plans have slightly different device specifications as well.

At-Home Landline 

The At-Home Landline is LifeFone’s most affordable option at $24.95/month. It connects to your home landline and includes a wearable pendant and an alert watch. It has a range of up to 1,300 feet from the base station, and an alarm can be sent if the room temperature goes above or below your chosen thresholds. Wearables have a battery life of 32 hours, and fall detection can be added on by purchasing a separate pendant.

The At-Home Landline requires a traditional landline to function. It’s best for seniors who don’t leave the home often, as the alert system only works on a limited range.


At-Home Cellular

The At-Home Cellular system is virtually identical to its landline sister version, but it doesn’t require the use of a landline. It does cost an additional $5/month, though.

Like the At-Home Landline, you can add fall detection by purchasing a separate pendant. A signal-strength indicator on the front of the device makes it easier to find the optimal position for the base station within your home.


At-Home & On-The-Go

The At-Home & On-The-Go system is similar to the At-Home Cellular, with a base station and a pendant, but adds a wrist-mounted mobile device with a 30-hour battery life and a 600-foot range. An optional fall detection necklace costs $10/month and works up to 1,400 feet from the base unit and 600 feet from the mobile unit.

This package is a stepping stone to a complete on-the-go system. However, there are more devices involved, most of which you need to remember to keep charged. Overall, we recommend that if you need a mobile system outside the home, skip this option and choose the VIP Active® or VIPX. 

At-Home & On-The-Go VIP Active®

At-Home & On-The-Go VIP Active®

The VIP Active® (Voice in Pendant) option is a significant upgrade in convenience over the standard At-Home & On-The-Go system. It’s a lightweight pendant that can be worn around the neck or on a belt clip. It works nationwide, and the battery lasts for up to 30 days.

The pendant has a microphone and speaker, so you can have two-way communication with the LifeFone Care Team Operators. It’s waterproof, has a temperature sensor, and can identify your location based on cellular and Wi-Fi technology, making emergency responses all the swifter. However, the VIP Active® is the only LifeFone medical alert product to which optional fall detection cannot be added on.

At-Home & On-The-Go VIPX

Finally, the VIPX is a further upgrade to the VIP Active®. It comes in a choice of three colors (gold, white, and black) and can include fall detection for an additional $5/month. 

The other big addition for the VIPX is support for the LifeFone XIPX Caregiver Mobile App. If you’re a caregiver, this mobile app allows you to see the current location of the person wearing the pendant, check their first motion of the day, and even track your loved one’s daily steps.

The VIPX device does have a shorter battery life than the other higher-end devices, at 16 days, and it doesn’t have a temperature sensor.

Safe Watch Active®

The LifeFone Safe Watch Active® is a medical alert watch that offers GPS-based assistance in case of emergency. The watch is equipped with a range of features including advanced location technology that quickly and accurately identifies the user's location using a combination of GPS and WiFi technology. 

The Smartwatch has 2-way communication, enabling users to speak to an emergency care agent using a built-in microphone and speaker. The watch comes with a compact charging cradle.The watch also includes a full sensor suite and weather monitoring feature that tracks daily step count, heart rate, and provides weather updates.

LifeFone Smartwatch Active

The watch has an all-day battery life and offers optional caregiver services, including location requests and CareAlert notifications that connect caregivers with instant notifications and group chats. 

At-Home & On-the-Go, VIP flex™

The LifeFone VIP flex Medical Alert System stands out with its two-way voice communication feature, allowing users to speak directly through the pendant in emergencies. The system has GPS and Wi-Fi for accurate location tracking, which is crucial for prompt assistance anywhere. Its fall detection capability is particularly noteworthy, automatically alerting the monitoring center if a fall is detected. The device is water-resistant, ensuring functionality in various environments. 

Its battery life is impressive, lasting up to 30 days on a single charge. Overall, the LifeFone VIP flex offers a comprehensive blend of safety, mobility, and convenience, making it a reliable choice for anyone needing a medical alert system.

This device can be worn on a wristband, a belt clip or a necklace. The device is configured as a wristband but can easily be changed to wear with their own 24 mm quick-release watchband or as a belt clip or necklace. It is available with optional fall detection for only $5.00 more per month.

LifeFone Optional Features & Accessories

On top of the standard features outlined above, you can choose from a few optional accessories to make your use of LifeFone even easier. These accessories are sold as a one-time purchase and can only be returned within the first 30 days.

Add-ons

Cost

Features & Functionality

Vanity Pendant

$71.95

  • Additional monitoring pendant. 

  • Doesn’t support fall detection.

Hanging Master Lock Box

$39.95

  • Facilitates emergency access to the home. 

  • Hanging.

Wall Mount Master Lock Box

$39.95

  • Facilitates emergency access to the home.

  • Wall-mounted.

LifeFone Hanging Lock Box

$29.95

  • Facilitates emergency access to the home. 

  • Hangs around the doorknob.

Mobile Device Charging Cradle

$39.95

  • Extra charging cradle for on-the-go devices.

Leather Carrying Case

$14.95

  • Protective leather case for mobile devices.

Wall-mounted Help Button

$39.95

  • Velcro-mounted help button for activating the LifeFone emergency response system.

LifeFone Installation & Setup

At-Home Landline

  1. Plug in the base unit to the power socket.
  2. Connect the base unit to your telephone wall jack via the jack labeled LINE.
  3. (Optional) Connect your existing landline telephone to the base unit via the jack labeled PHONE.
  4. Turn on the base unit. The front panel light should turn green.
  5. Test your system by pressing the pendant button.
  6. When the operator speaks to you through the base unit, state, “This is a test.”

At-Home Cellular

  1. Plug in the base unit to the power socket.
  2. Turn on the base unit. The front panel light should turn green.
  3. Test your system by pressing the pendant button.
  4. When the operator speaks to you through the base unit, state, “This is a test.”

On-The-Go Units

  1. Plug the power cord of the mobile device charger into a standard wall outlet.
  2. Place the mobile device into the cradle. While it’s charging, the light on the front of the cradle will illuminate.
  3. The mobile device will turn on automatically and connect to the cellular network within 60 seconds.
  4. It will take approximately 3 hours for the device to be fully charged. It is recommended to charge the mobile device each night.
  5. With the mobile device in its cradle, test your system by pressing the help button.
  6. When the operator speaks to you through the base unit, state, “This is a test.”

LifeFone Monitoring Services

You can summon help from LifeFone by pressing the personal help button on your wristband, pendant, or wall-mounted button. On-The-Go devices are connected via nationwide 4G LTE cellular and include GPS, so the company will know exactly where you are for immediate assistance. 

It’s also a good idea to preemptively update your emergency care profile through the LifeFone account portal. This gives LifeFone information such as your address, caregiver, health information, emergency contacts, and physician.

Your emergency care instructions are relayed to the LifeFone Care Agent, who will contact EMS or a loved one you’ve designated, depending on your situation and preferences. They will keep monitoring you until your medical emergency is over. 

Should you choose the optional fall detection service, this help will be automatically dispatched to you in the case of a fall.

Another interesting optional extra is the LifeFone Daily Check-in Call. For an additional $19/month, a customer care agent will call you each day at a prescribed time to check in on you, give you a medication reminder, or give you a daily reminder.

LifeFone Contracts – Warranty & Insurance

LifeFone equipment has a 30-day money-back guarantee that begins three days after your equipment is shipped. You may cancel your service at any time for a prorated refund, but any purchased accessories are not returnable for a refund.

All LifeFone systems have a lifetime warranty for manufacturer defects, and for an additional $5 per month, you can get insurance for equipment replacement for damage beyond manufacturer defects, theft, or loss.

LifeFone App

LifeFone offers a mobile app for use with the VIPX voice-in-pendant alert. The app is available for Android and iOS mobile devices and costs an additional $8/month on top of the monthly monitoring price. 

With the app, if you’re a caregiver, you can see your loved one’s first motion of the day, track the location of the device, check battery levels, and even set daily step goal targets.

LifeFone Customer Support

LifeFone’s website offers useful product information, a blog aimed at seniors, and a basic FAQ. There’s no extensive knowledge base here, but you can peruse PDF versions of the user manuals. These are relatively short but offer straightforward information on the functions of all the buttons and what the various lights on the alert systems signify.

LifeFone offers 24/7 support via phone and email. We received replies to our test emails within three hours, and our calls to the support line (800-882-2280) were answered immediately by courteous, knowledgeable agents.

Pricing & Special Offers

LifeFone medical alert plans include two at-home plans and three on-the-go plans ranging between $29.95/month and $41.95/month. You can pay monthly, quarterly, or annually, with a discount of 25% for paying each year in advance. Other than pricing, LifeFone plans differ mostly on the hardware they offer.

Fall detection is available on all plans for an additional cost of $5-$10/month, depending on the plan.

Product

Monthly Price

Design For

Connection Type

Equipment Fees

At-Home Landline

$24.95

At Home

Landline

None

At-Home Cellular

$30.95

At Home

Cellular

None

At-Home & On-The-Go

$36.95

At Home/On-The-Go

Cellular/Wi-Fi

None

At-Home & On-The-Go VIP Active®

$39.95

At Home/On-The-Go

Cellular/Wi-Fi

None

At-Home & On-The-Go VIPX

$41.95

At Home/On-The-Go

Cellular/Wi-Fi

None

At-Home & On-the-Go, VIP flex™

$41.95

At Home/On-The-Go

Cellular
None

How LifeFone Compares to Other Medical Alert Companies


LifeFone
Medical Guardian
Life Alert
LifeStation

Cost of Upfront Equipment

None

None

None

None

Monthly Monitoring Fees

$29.95-$41.95

$29.95-$39.95

From $49.95

$21.95-$47.95

Activation Fees

None

None

$95-$198

$20

Optional Monthly Add-ons

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Water-Resistant Devices

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Fall Detection

Yes ($5-$10 per month)

Yes ($10 per month)

No

Yes

GPS Location Monitoring

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Mobile App

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Connection

Landline, Cellular

Landline, Cellular, WiFi

Landline, Cellular

Landline, Cellular

Optional Accessories

Lockbox, carrying case, pendant

Alert 911, buttons, fall detection pendant

Buttons

Belt, button, lockbox, panic button

LifeFone vs Medical Guardian

LifeFone and Medical Guardian offer similar products, but Medical Guardian’s equipment pricing is higher. Medical Guardian arguably has a better suite of caregiver monitoring tools than LifeFone, though LifeFone isn’t too far behind. LifeFone’s On-The-Go products have longer battery lives than Medical Guardian’s products, however.

LifeFone vs Life Alert

LifeFone and Life Alert offer comparable products and are both respected companies in the industry. We recommend LifeFone for larger homes, as LifeFone’s At-Home products have a wider range. The cellular service from LifeFone supports both AT&T and Verizon, whereas Life Alert only supports AT&T.

LifeFone vs LifeStation

LifeStation and LifeFone both excel as medical alert systems. LifeStation has a smartwatch option but doesn’t offer the wall-mounted help buttons and lockboxes that LifeFone does. If you just want.

LifeFone LifeFone Visit Site

Bottom Line

LifeFone should be on your list of potential medical alert providers no matter if you need a simple at-home device or an on-the-go device with caregiver remote monitoring. LifeFone’s hardware works well and is easy to use, and while it’s not the cheapest option on the market, the few extra dollars per month are worth it for the quality of the product and peace of mind this offers you.

Frequently Asked Questions
Who Owns LifeFone?+-

LifeFone is a private company with headquarters in White Plains, New York. The current company president is Ronald Maggio.

How Long Has LifeFone Been in Business?+-

LifeFone has been in business since 1976.

Is LifeFone Legit?+-

LifeFone is one of the longest-running medical alert companies in the US, with over 110 employees and annual revenue of over $21 million. The company is rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau.

Beyond contributing to Top10.com, Juliette Siegfried is a leading writer, workshop leader, and community expert in dating and non-traditional relationships. She is currently the most-viewed author in the Open Relationships column on Quora. In 2004 and 2007, Juliette founded Poliamor Barcelona and Madrid and has since contributed to multiple books on dating and relationships and presented at numerous conferences, including Euro BiCon and the Contemporary Intimacies Conference.

The author of this article has been paid by Natural Intelligence to write this article. Neither the author nor Natural Intelligence provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or your local emergency number immediately.

LifeFone reviews

Excellent • Reviews 939
on
Excellent
81%
Great
10%
Average
5%
Poor
2%
Bad
2%
Sort by
Ka
Kathy
1 day ago
We have been very pleased with the…
We have been very pleased with the customer service LifeFone has provided these last two+ years. Our mother has needed help a couple times, and the representatives who contacted us were kind, patient, and helpful.
DM
Diane De Micco
3 weeks ago
Lifefone has delivered excellent…
Lifefone has delivered excellent service during setup and since. I have the system for over 2 years and have never had an issue with them. I needed help twice and I pushed the button and had help very quickly and with compassion. I would recommend this company to anyone who could possibly need help with a lift assist or a trip to a hospital.
TC
Teresa and Chris Cooper
3 months ago
My mom used her lifefone pendant and…
My mom used her lifefone pendant and immediately got a response. She told the call center she was in distress. They dispatched and ambulance to her home then proceeded to call the family. Unfortunately each member couldn’t be spoken with directly and a message was left. The ambulance arrived open her door using the key lock door box assisted her and took her to the hospital. She was OK due to their quick action. My only “complaint “ is the call showed on my phone as central station, not lifefone. I was on my way into a meeting and did not answer. Wishing it said Lifefone I would have answered immediately as would have my brother. Regardless my mom is fine due to Lifefone’s quick response. Thank you
ET
Elizabeth Torno
4 months ago
Very helpful during emergency
The LifeFone was great. During an emergency I didn't have to call the family members because they were notified from the moment that button was pushed until the ambulance got to the hospital. It was also great that they were able to call the ambulance while I kept my grandmother calm and gathered the necessary things for a trip to the hospital. The only reason why we cancelled the plan was because my grandmother passed away and it was no longer needed.

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