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Chatsie, An Introduction -
Connecting Generations Through Simple Smartphones

Chatsie is a new smartphone service, designed primarily for senior citizens who want a simpler experience. Below you can learn more about why we created Chatsie and the team behind it.

From June - October, we open our “Beta” testing programme, where people can purchase a discounted Chatsie subscription in exchange for telling us about their experience in 1-1 catch-ups with and survey responses. This will then help us to prioritise ahead of our formal launch at the end of 2024.

Our vision is a world where senior citizens are engaged, connected, and included in modern society. Thank you for visiting and we hope you like what you read here!

Want to get your hands on a Chatsie phone?

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Why We Have Built Chatsie
A Personal Story

Our Founder, George realised the need for Chatsie after purchasing an iPhone for his ageing mother. Although Apple prides itself on simplicity, it is clear these phones are not designed for seniors who are less comfortable with digital devices. Increasing visual icon size may look beautiful (part of the accessibility mode with Apple) but it is largely irrelevant if that visual language isn’t in someone’s memory to start with.
Digital Inclusivity

The alternative is a “big button phone”, where the user can send and receive calls easily. These phones are functional, but they’re often ugly, which means they are bought, but not really utilised properly (no one wants to advertise that they are getting older and this type of phone is a clear indication of someone ageing). Many are not smartphones, which seems like a sensible solution if calling is the main goal. The reality however, is that the world has become entirely digital. Personal banking, repeat prescriptions on the NHS, communicating with millennials and Gen Zs; these all require internet-led “apps” which cannot function unless one has a smartphone. Seniors are being left behind and that has the potential to cause an even bigger social care crisis than the one we currently have as they don’t have the technical support network that is needed to function independently.
The Opportunity

We saw an opportunity to differentiate in a couple of ways:

1. Give customers the whole package (the network too, not just the handset) so it’s much simpler to buy and manage everything.
2. Build an experience that is about improving life vs managing decline (it’s a subtle difference, but “elder” products generally fall into the latter camp and we know there are many who are frustrated about being typecast like this).

Over the last couple of years, we have built Chatsie with dozens of senior citizens and their relatives. We are so grateful for their input and excited to bring Chatsie to the wider market later this year.

Want to get your hands on a Chatsie phone?

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Team & Culture
George Bevis

George is best known for starting business banking service, Tide. After four years of successfully building Tide, George decided to hand the reins to an exceptional operator, giving him an opportunity to continue his entrepreneurial journey, but with a more “social impact” hat on. He has built Cando, a venture studio full of bright people, building solutions for big world problems. Chatsie was incubated from Cando and the team is still heavily involved to this day.
Romanie Thomas - CEO

Romanie started her career in headhunting with a foundational stint at La Fosse Associates (employee number 12) but soon caught the entrepreneurial bug, founding VC-backed, social impact startup Juggle Jobs in 2015 (tackling the gender gap in business leadership), plus Advisory and Exec roles for Circl and Mindstone respectively. She and George have known eachother for several years and happily found they both shared a passion for building a much needed product for seniors.
Culture

Chatsie is entirely self funded (not backed by Venture Capitalists). We have several other amazing members of staff, but we do not intend to rapidly hire over the next couple of years in the way we have in previous firms. The culture is defined by a set of four values that we live and breathe, and we intend to grow (headcount) in a sustainable way that means our customers always have an excellent experience.
Next

1. Read about the journey of designing and building Chatsie here.
2. You can visit our help section covering over 50 FAQs.
3. If you are interested in purchasing a Chatsie subscription as part of the summer Beta programme, visit the website here (use the code EARLYBIRD to claim your 20% subscription discount).
4. If you have any questions or feedback, contact us on hello@chatsie.com.

Over the next few weeks we'll publish more information about how people can get the most out of using their smartphones, plus further details about our journey. Make sure you follow us on our social channels: Linkedin, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter. ​
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