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MobileHelp vs. Life Alert Comparison

MobileHelp and Life Alert are two medical alert companies that offer in-home and mobile medical alert systems with wearable help buttons. Because the help button allows you to connect directly to a call center, these devices are considered monitored medical alert systems.

Having the ability to maintain your independence while still feeling safe can significantly impact your overall health and well-being. It can also provide peace of mind for your caregivers and family. One way to make this a reality is to use a medical alert system called a personal emergency response system (PERS). 

happy senior couple going for a walk in the park

Medical alert systems come with a wearable device that allows you to connect with a staffed monitoring center or loved one with a simple press of a button. Depending on the system and plan, you will have coverage at home and on the go.

While finding the right medical alert system to meet your budget and needs can feel daunting, narrowing down the choices can help. The following side-by-side comparison of two popular systems–MobileHelp vs. Life Alert–can help you do just that. Keep reading to discover the pros, cons, costs and features of MobileHelp vs. Life Alert.

MobileHelp Duo

In-Home Classic

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The Classic gives you all the protection you need while at home. This system comes with a base unit and a waterproof help button you can wear as a pendant or on your wrist. The base connects to the call center 24/7 via cellular service. The Classic has a 1,400-foot range from the base station, which is ideal for most apartments, condos, and homes. It’s also compatible with the MobileHelp Fall Button. MobileHelp Classic costs $19.95 per month plus a one-time processing fee of $49.95.

In-Home Wired Home

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Wired Home is MobileHelp’s in-home landline system. It comes with the same features and operating instructions as the Classic, but instead of connecting to the monitoring center via cellular service, the base unit uses your landline to call for help. If you have poor cell service in your area, this is the plan for you. MobileHelp Wired Home costs $24.95 per month.

In-Home Touch Classic

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Touch Classic is an easy-to-use tablet and medical alert device that gives you access to 24/7 monitoring and two-way communication during an emergency. It also doubles as an interactive tablet that you can use for playing cognitive games, looking at pictures, and managing your medications. It is 4G LTE compatible and Wi-Fi and Bluetooth-enabled. The Touch comes with a pendant or wrist-style help wearable help button and costs $54.95 per month plus a one-time processing fee of $99.95.

On-the-Go Solo

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MobileHelp Solo is a mobile alert system that provides coverage at home and on the go. This system includes a mobile unit and one waterproof help button you can wear around your neck on the wrist. In addition, the Solo pendant has GPS tracking for extra safety while away from home. It connects to the monitoring center via cellular connection while at home and on the go. No base unit or landline is required. It’s also compatible with the MobileHelp Fall Button. MobileHelp Micro Solo costs $37.95 per month.

On-the-Go Micro

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This is MobileHelp’s smallest and lightest mobile help button. The Micro is a GPS-enabled device you can wear around your neck, or you can detach it from the lanyard and place it in a pocket or purse when you’re on the go. It weighs 1.8 ounces, so it’s ideal for seniors who want something discreet. The Micro also has voice guidance and high-quality speakers to help you communicate with the call center. MobileHelp Micro costs $33.95 per month.

The Duo is MobileHelp’s answer to comprehensive coverage. This system gives you access to emergency help at home and on the go by connecting to the monitoring center via the base station at home or mobile device and GPS-tracking unit when you’re away from home. The Duo comes with a pendant and wrist-style waterproof help button that works within a 1,400-foot range from the base station while the user is at home. It’s also compatible with the MobileHelp Fall Button. MobileHelp Duo costs $41.95 per month.

Mobile Duo

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If you need coverage for two people, consider the MobileHelp Duo. The Duo provides protection at home and on the go with an in-home base unit and mobile unit with GPS tracking and a wearable neck pendant or wrist help button. This system provides services and buttons for two people at a discounted rate. MobileHelp Mobile Duo costs $44.95 per month.

Touch Duo

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The Touch Duo provides the same great features as the Touch Classic and adds a wearable pendant, mobile device, and charger you can use when on the go. This system provides 24/7 emergency monitoring directly from the home screen with soft key touch or the wearable help button. The Touch Duo costs $54.95 per month plus a one-time processing fee of $99.95.

Life Alert Products

Life Alert Master Unit

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The Master Unit is the required system when using a Life Alert medical alert system. You can add other features like the help button and GPS + Mobile device to it. The Master Unit system plugs into the wall and has a large help button you can press to contact the call center. You can also use the wearable pendant or wrist-style help button with the system. When using the wearable help button, Life Alert advertises an 800-foot coverage range from the base station. The main unit comes with a choice of cellular or landline to connect with the emergency monitoring center. This system can range from $49.95-$89.95, depending on add-ons and if you’re approved to purchase the Master Unit on its own without a bundle package.

Life Alert Mobile System

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The Mobile System or help on the go + GPS is Life Alert’s answer to dealing with emergencies that occur away from home. This add-on unit comes with a small GPS-enabled help button you can wear or carry in a bag or pocket. You will be connected to the emergency monitoring center via cell service using the mobile Life Alert button. This is not a standalone system. You must purchase the Life Alert Master Unit in order to use the GPS-enabled device. If you bundle the Master Unit and Mobile + GPS, you will pay $69.90 per month.

Life Alert Help Button

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The help button is a wall-mount device with two-way communication. You can mount the help button in the shower, bathtub wall, bedrooms or any other location in your house. In a medical emergency, simply press the large red help button to connect with a dispatcher. The Life Alert help button is an add-on service that is available for $19.95 per month.

MobileHelp and Life Alert offer medical alert systems at home and on the go. While both companies provide medical alert monitoring services, we feel that MobileHelp is a clear winner when comparing the two systems.

What Customers Are Saying about MobileHelp

MobileHelp customer reviews are generally positive and show that the company tries to resolve any issues. The BBB gives the company an A+ rating and lists just 30 complaints in the last three years. Featured below is a recent complaint posted on the BBB website, followed by some more positive feedback:

“I ordered mobile help a medical alarm Monitoring company and there central dispatch did not respond to my pushing of the button for at least 10 plus minutes to a half an hour . I have a heart arrhythmia and time is of the essence. I asked to return there equipment and was promised a refund once they received there unit. Once they received there unit they wouldn’t refund me shipping even though it’s there system that does not work correctly I asked for a supervisor on multiple occasions and was refused. This is not a company that should be in business and in my opinion is an endangerment to someone’s life in an emergency.” BBB notes the company resolved this issue with the customer.

“As a family member requesting this for my father, the ordering process was easy and straightforward. Was able to choose the solution that best met our needs. When issues have arisen with the operation of the base unit and testing of devices, support has been readily available via phone to help guide through testing and resolving issues. Have not had to use the system for real, but response has been quick during tests.”— David Rice, Verified Customer (Review from Bestcompany.com)

“New user. So far, I am impressed with the features of my Mobile Help. I have the use of the basic unit plus the On The Go ability. My daughters feel that they don’t need to ” hover” over me as much. I like that Mobil Help has the button near my commode and shower for help.”— Joyce Guthrie, Verified Customer (Review from Bestcompany.com)

What Customers Are Saying about Life Alert

Life Alert complaints date back several years. However, if you go just by the information posted on the company’s website, customers are always happy because Life Alert fails to publish reviews that acknowledge any downsides of the product. Unfortunately, most of the reviews we read online were from customers complaining of unresolved issues, a poor customer service experience, or failure to have anyone from the company contact them regarding a product.

The BBB website currently lists a rating of 3.69 out of 5 for 186 customer reviews. Here are a few recent reviews on the BBB site.

“The service left the customer, a 96 year old man, on the floor with no help. After an hour of the device telling him he would be connected to dispatch center, no one picked up at the dispatch center. He had to crawl on the floor to call 911 himself because dispatch never picked up his alert to send him rescue. Now, that I am trying to cancel the service due to their lack of service at this customer’s time of need, they are very uncooperative. They are out of line trying to accuse customer of providing false information. It is very frustrating to be treated as though I am making false claims after a very upsetting emergency.”

“A couple of years ago, I signed my 86 year old mother up for Life Alert. The price seemed a little high and I did give into the Sales staff that basically made me feel that if I didn’t get it, I must not care for my mother. At the time I ordered it, I was gone a lot for work. Covid came and I became unemployed. Now we have someone with mom 24/7. I have tried explaining to them that this things have changed and we cannot afford the service. They will not let us break the 3 year contract. She is to the point that its either being able to afford medication or life alert service. They do not care about the customers well being, but rather the locked in contracts that they have. Every time we have contacted them they try and make us feel small and are very condescending to us.”

“I had chest pains and trouble breathing. The person stayed on the line and kept me calm until the police and ambulance got here.”—Barbara, verified customer (Review from Better Business Bureau)

“I called Life Alert twice to get some pricing as my mom just passed away, and I needed something for my dad. They hung up on me twice because I would not give them my full address. I just had 2 questions and they would not answer them for me- I was told they are in ‘the free brochure they will mail me.’ So ridiculous. They just lost a customer.”-Terry, verified customer (Review from Best Company)

Is there something cheaper than Life Alert?

Yes, there are plenty of medical alert devices priced lower than Life Alert, and they don’t require a lengthy contract. If you want a high-quality, affordable medical alert device, consider looking at Medical Guardian, Aloe Care Health, or Bay Alarm Medical and MobileHelp.

Is MobileHelp a legitimate company?

Yes, MobileHelp is a legitimate company based in the United States. MobileHelp reviews are generally positive, and the company currently has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

Is Life Alert and Lifeline the same thing?

Life Alert and Lifeline are not the same things. With that being said, Lifeline, like Life Alert, is a medical alert company. Philips Lifeline offers three medical alert systems, including plans that work at home and on the go. Philips Lifeline partners with the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) to provide discounts on services to eligible AARP members.

Which network does MobileHelp use?

MobileHelp connects to the monitoring center via AT&T cellular network when using a mobile system or an in-home system that uses a cellular connection instead of a landline. This mobile service is included with your monitoring plan.

Do you need a landline for Life Alert?

Life Alert does not require a landline to connect the master unit to the emergency monitoring center. You have the choice between a cellular or landline connection. You will need to work with the customer service department to determine the best connection for your needs.

Pricing accurate as of April 14, 2022.

Sara Lindberg - Writer for AgingInPlace

Author: Sara Lindberg

Sara Lindberg is a freelance writer specializing in health, fitness, senior care and nutrition. With a master’s in education and bachelor’s in exercise science, she has worked as a personal trainer and group exercise specialist for older adults. Her work has appeared in several national print and media publications. In her own life, caring for a parent with health issues has allowed her to see firsthand how critical it is for seniors and their families to have accurate, compassionate, and relatable information as they make decisions about aging in place.