MobileHelp offers everything from traditional medical alert buttons to the industry’s first medical alert smartwatch. It’s also one of the only companies to offer in-home and mobile combinations that are under $50 per month to monitor. But MobileHelp’s equipment isn’t the sleekest out there. Both in-home consoles and mobile help devices can be bulky, which may make them uncomfortable for some people.
Free activation on most plans
30-day risk-free trial
Multiple on-the-go choices
Simple package options
Affordable bundled packages
Medical alert smartwatch
Touchscreen in-home tablet
Limited smartwatch function
No voice activation
Shorter range limits
MobileHelp Medical Alert Pricing
MobileHelp’s pricing structure is one of the most straightforward among the medical alert companies we’ve tested and reviewed. It offers seven different packages, but they’re simple and easy to understand.
We like that activation is free for most packages, and there are no equipment fees unless you opt for the Samsung smartwatch. You can also get a break on monthly fees if you pay in bigger chunks (annually, semiannually, or quarterly).
Data effective 10/04/2019. Offers and availability subject to change. *$50 activation fee waived with annual subscription, $359.40.
MobileHelp Pricing Highlights
You have a lot of options with MobileHelp, but its offerings are easier to understand than some other companies, like Bay Alarm Medical. Plus, its in-home and mobile medical alert combination is almost $10 cheaper than Bay Alarm’s. That can make it easier to add essentials like fall detection to your plan.
Like most other medical alert services, MobileHelp charges extra for fall detection. Its $10-per-month fee is standard, but its monthly base prices are lower, so it’s more affordable to add a fall button.
MobileHelp alert systems usually come with free activation and free ground shipping. The MobileHelp Classic package lists an activation fee of around $50, but that’s waived if you pay for a full year up front.
If you’re interested in the smartwatch, you’ll have to pay the $350 equipment price when you order. That’s a big chunk of change—and even though it’s a Samsung watch, you don’t get all the typical smartwatch bells and whistles. You can’t download apps or send messages. The only communication is with the MobileHelp monitoring center.
With those limitations, we think the price for the smartwatch is too high for what you get, which is a bulky mobile wrist pendant with fitness tracking and weather information.
Cancellation and Refunds
MobileHelp doesn’t require you to sign a contract, but cancellation can be a little tricky.
If you received your equipment from MobileHelp, you need to send it back to cancel your service. Return shipping fees are your responsibility. When MobileHelp receives your returned equipment, the company will cancel your service that same day. After cancellation, you’ll get a prorated refund based on the monthly cost—even if you paid in advance at a discounted rate.
If you purchased your equipment through a third-party, like Amazon, you don’t need to return it to MobileHelp. In that case, all you need to do is call MobileHelp customer service. MobileHelp will cancel your service effective the day you call, and you’ll get a prorated refund of any prepaid service that was unused.
According to MobileHelp’s terms of service, you won’t get a refund if your remaining balance is less than $15 when you cancel. MobileHelp also notes that its pricing is subject to change without notice. There’s no price-lock guarantee like you get with other medical alert companies such as Bay Alarm Medical.
Personal Insight We had to return my father-in-law’s equipment after he passed away. We were disappointed at the burden placed on us to deal with the boxing and shipping costs during a time that was already difficult.
We ended up paying for a couple of weeks of service that we didn’t need because getting the medical alert system in the mail wasn’t our top priority. But once MobileHelp received everything, canceling the service was easy and we got a refund check pretty quickly.
No hidden fees
30-day trial period
No long-term contracts
Free shipping on most plans
Affordable monthly monitoring fees
$10 extra per month for fall detection
Cumbersome return process
Expensive, up-front payment required for smartwatch
MobileHelp Medical Alert Tech and Equipment
The equipment offered by MobileHelp is simple and easy to set up and use. The company does a good job of embracing new technology, like its early adoption of a smartwatch as a medical alert device. The table below breaks down the equipment that’s included in each MobileHelp package.
Data effective 07/29/2019. Offers and availability subject to change.
MobileHelp’s equipment is typical of what you’ll find in most medical alert systems. Where it stands out is with its smartwatch and its mobile tablet base station—this was the first medical alert company to add either of those. We also like the MobileHelp Duo package as the most affordable in-home and mobile bundle we’ve seen.
We give MobileHelp kudos for its innovative move to turn a smartwatch into a medical alert device. We got to try out the MobileHelp Smart tracker before it went on sale, and we liked the idea even though the execution fell a bit short. The smartwatch is a more stylish and covert way to wear mobile medical alert technology, but it’s bulky and uncomfortable to wear. I wore it and so did a few fellas—even they found it cumbersome and uncomfortable.
The other big disappointment with the smartwatch is that it doesn’t do what you expect a $350 smartwatch to do. There’s no way to download apps, and the only communication available is with MobileHelp’s monitoring center. We think MobileHelp is on the right track here, but some improvements could be made, including making a lighter version for smaller frames.
The bulky trend continues when you move on to the MobileHelp Solo mobile medical alert device. It’s not as compact as the in-home emergency button, and it doesn’t fit in a wristband. You can attach it to a necklace or lanyard, but it’s still pretty big. It doesn’t seem practical to wear if you’re going out for a nice dinner or simply don’t like how heavy it is.
The MobileHelp Touch medical alert system uses a handheld tablet in place of a traditional base station. The tablet has an 8-inch touchscreen display that you use to manage your medical alert system. There’s also an optional service that gives you access to video consultations with medical personnel.
There’s a speaker on the tablet, so you have two-way communication with the monitoring center. Unlike the smartwatch, the tablet throws in extras like a camera, messaging, and games. You can even use it as a digital photo frame. This is the most expensive MobileHelp option, and you can’t use the month-to-month payment plan—it’s available only with an annual or semiannual subscription.
Installation and Use
Setting up the smartwatch was as simple as charging it and turning it on. MobileHelp’s other products are just as easy to install. All you need to do is plug in your MobileHelp equipment and turn it on—unless you’re using the wired base station that requires a connection to a landline phone jack. The LED displays will let you know that the system is on and ready for action.
Each mobile alert device and the smartwatch all need to be charged to work, and they all come with charging cables or cradles. All of MobileHelp’s emergency response buttons require you to press them to send the help signal to the monitoring center. There’s no voice-activated option that lets you tell someone that “you’ve fallen and can’t get up.”
You can get fall protection with MobileHelp’s automatic fall detection button. The button is an add-on to any package ($10 per month), and it has sensors that will automatically alert the response center if a fall is detected. That way you can get help even if you’re unable to press your help button.
In-Home Cellular Base Unit and Help Button
Two-way communication through base station
Waterproof help button design
600-foot range from base station
In-Home Wired Base Unit and Help Button
1,300-foot range from base station
Fall Detection Button
$10 extra per month
Automatic fall detection sensors
Necklace or wristband options
Emergency help button
Heart rate monitor
Mobilehelp Touch Tablet
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
One unique feature that MobileHelp offers is medication reminders. You can sign up for this extra service for $5 per month. But you need to use a cellular plan if you want to add the medication reminder subscription. The cellular base station is where you enter in all of your prescription information and medication schedule.
When it’s time for a medication, the base station displays the name of the drug, and you get a voice alert that says, “medication reminder, please press reset to accept.” If you hit reset, it records the medication as taken. If you don’t hit reset, you’ll get another voice alert every minute for the next 30 minutes. If you don’t hit the reset button within those 30 minutes, the base station will record that the medication was ignored.
A Note about False Alarms
MobileHelp’s medical alert pendants aren’t tough to trigger, but we got quite a few false alarms from my father-in-law accidentally bumping the button.
We were reassured about the company’s response times because they were often on the phone to us before my father-in-law even realized what he’d done. It was usually during yard work, or when he was rummaging through the garage, so he didn’t hear the communication through the base station. Each time the operators were friendly, patient, and understanding—and there were no charges or fees for having a false alarm.
In-home and mobile device options
Landline and cellular connections
Patented GPS tracking technology
Smartwatch and tablet options
No voice activation
Shorter range for in-home help buttons
Limited smartwatch function
MobileHelp Customer Service
In my interactions with MobileHelp, the customer service representatives and monitoring center operators were helpful and patient. My only real complaint is the return and refund policy, especially if you’re sending back the equipment after a loved one has passed away.
The company doesn’t provide packaging to return the equipment in, and you’re responsible for the return shipping costs. On top of that, you can’t even cancel your service until MobileHelp has received the equipment. That means you’re being charged for service after your family member is no longer using it.
But the company does some other things right.
Mobilehelp offers customer support in 240 different languages, which is the largest number of multilingual services we’ve seen. And it has a no-risk 30-day trial, so you can find out if you like the MobileHelp equipment and service before you’re out any money. We also like that MobileHelp’s policies, packages, and pricing are transparent and easy to figure out. There aren’t any surprises or additional fees waiting for you—but the company makes it clear that prices are subject to change without notice. That means your monthly cost could increase.
Customer Service Pros
Extensive multilingual services
Helpful operators and customer service reps
30-day no-risk trial period
Customer Service Cons
Skimpy refund policy
Other Medical Alert Systems to Consider
If you’re not ready to give MobileHelp a try, here are some other medical alert companies we’ve tested and reviewed.
No. Any equipment you receive from MobileHelp is “on loan” during the length of your service. That’s why you have to send it back when you no longer need the service or decide to cancel. But you can find MobileHelp equipment availablethrough third-party sellers like Amazon. If you buy your equipment through a third-party, then you own it and never have to send it back.
Do I need a cellular contract to use a MobileHelp medical alert system?
No. Cellular coverage is provided by MobileHelp through AT&T. Your cellular connection is part of your monthly fee. The reliability of your coverage can depend on how strong AT&T’s cellular network is in your area, though. Be sure to verify that you’ve got reliable coverage before ordering a system.
What if I move?
You can take your MobileHelp medical alert system with you if you move, or if you spend part of the year at another home. All you need to do is contact customer service to update your address and phone number. MobileHelp recommends calling the company at least one week before a move or vacation to verify that coverage is available in your new location.
What happens if I press my help button but can’t speak to the operator?
If you’re unable to talk after activating your medical alert device, the operator will assume that there’s an emergency and will contact emergency responders. The monitoring center will also reach out to the emergency contacts listed on your account.
MobileHelp Medical Alert: The Bottom Line
MobileHelp offers a well-rounded suite of medical alert systems that you can use in your home, on the go, or both. MobileHelp’s monitoring prices are reasonable, and there aren’t any long-term contracts to worry about. We also like that the company isn’t afraid of stepping up to try new technology like its medical alert smartwatch and in-home touchscreen tablet.
From personal experience, I know that the response times are good, and the operators are well-trained and friendly. But we weren’t happy with the process involved to cancel the service and return the equipment.
We used information from hands-on testing, customer reviews, research, and my father-in-law’s real-life experience to review MobileHelp’s medical alert systems. We considered customer policies, equipment and package offerings, monthly fees, and how easy the system was to understand and operate.
Rebecca is the lead safety reporter and in-house expert for SafeWise.com. She has been a journalist and blogger for over 25 years, with a focus on home and community safety for the past six. Rebecca spends dozens of hours every month testing and evaluating security products and strategies. Her safety expertise is sought after by publications, broadcast journalists, non-profit organizations, podcasts, and more. You can find her work and contributions in places like TechCrunch, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, HGTV, MSN, and an ever-growing library of radio and TV clips. Learn more