Specific Needs

Accessible mobile communications for the Specific Needs of customers with disabilities.  

  • Dedicated team of specialists 
  • Access to  cellular products and services designed to meet Specific Needs
  • Tailored to visually impaired, hearing impaired, and senior citizens

Mobile Manufacturers Forum 

Visit website

Find out more about the features that are making cellphones more accessible to people with disabilities  

  • About Specific Needs
  • Visually Impaired
  • Deaf and hearing impaired
  • Senior citizens
  • More Information

Vodacom provides accessible mobile communication and a dedicated team of specialists focus on the Specific Needs of customers with disabilities. Vodacom, in partnership with various disability organizations and individuals, provides customers who are visually impaired, deaf and hearing impaired, as well as senior citizens easy access to a range of mobile products and services designed to meet their individual needs. Vodacom offers a wide range of phones, services and price plans, so that you can find one that suits your specific needs.


Vodacom is dedicated to providing products and services that increase accessibility to communication for customers who are blind, partially sighted or experience low vision. 

Inclusive design devices 

Some of the accessible smartphones Vodacom has on offer, such as iPhone (Apple OS) or Samsung Galaxy S and J ranges (Android OS), are sold as is, because it comes standard with:

• Pre-loaded or built-in text-to-speech software, which converts text-based information displayed on the smartphone screen to auditory information, and enables visually impaired customers to listen to their SMSs, contact names, battery life, signal strength, and much more.

• The text-to-speech applications are called:

      • Apple – VoiceOver

      • Android – TalkBack

Note: when VoiceOver or TalkBack is activated on your Apple or Android smartphone, the gestures are different than those a sighted person would use – for example, all single “taps” are replaced by “double taps”.

The following inclusive design smartphones and tablets can be purchased by our visually impaired customers:

Apple devices:

  • iPhone 6
  • iPhone 6 Plus
  • iPhone 6S 
  • iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPhone 7
  • iPhone 7 Plus
  • iPad tablets 
  • iPad Mini tablets

  • Android devices

    • Samsung Galaxy J3
    • Samsung Galaxy J5
    • Samsung Galaxy S6
    • Samsung Galaxy S7 
    • Samsung S7 Galaxy Edge
    • Samsung Galaxy tablets
    • Vodacom Smart Kick 2 – MOST AFFORDABLE PHONE
    On-line deals 

    Click here to view the on-line deals http://www.vodacom.co.za/vodacom/shopping/devices?deviceType=1

In-store activation of the text-to-speech application on smartphones 

We realize that a visually impaired customer initially requires assistance by a sighted person to activate the text-to-speech application (VoiceOver or Talkback) on the phone, before they can start using the phone in audio mode.  

Therefore, when a visually impaired customer purchases a new accessible Smartphone, you can request a store consultant to activate the text-to-speech application on the phone.  

Should you prefer to activate the text-to-speech application of your Apple or Android phone at a later stage, you can follow the steps below.

How to switch VoiceOver ON (Apple devices)

Method 1

The simplest way to switch VoiceOver ON is by pressing the home button  three times quickly. 

Method 2

Go to Settings - General - Accessibility – VoiceOver – switch it ON                      

Basic Gestures for iOS (Apple) Smartphones when VoiceOver is switched ON

The moment VoiceOver is switched ON, the Gestures change: 

When the blind customer uses VoiceOver switched ON, one must double tap to open any App as a single tap will simply announce the name of the App. 

Some gestures for using VoiceOver

      • Single tap to hear a description of what you have tapped

      • Double tap to activate

      • Flick to the left or right to move to the next item on screen.

      • Flick three fingers to scroll

How to switch TalkBack ON

Go to Settings – Accessibility – Vision – switch TalkBack ON

Basic Gestures for Android Smartphones when TalkBack is switched ON

The moment that TalkBack is switched ON the Gestures change: 

Some gestures for using TalkBack 

Double tap to open any App as a single tap will only announce the name of the App. 

Use two fingers to scroll 

Getting to know the accessibility features of your phone

When customers with visual impairments purchase an accessible touch screen smartphone for the first time, they require information about how to use the VoiceOver or TalkBack text-to-speech application on their new smartphone.  


To learn more about VoiceOver, click here  


To learn more about TalkBack, click here


Vodacom Kiosks at Organizations for the visually impaired

We have established Vodacom Kiosks at various Organizations for the Visually Impaired where we have trained visually impaired staff to offer training and information on how to use accessible smartphones.  

These staff members have also been trained on selling basic Vodacom products, such as airtime, starter packs and porting customers.

Contact the relevant organization to make an appointment:

Pretoria: SA National Council for the Blind (Tel 012 452 3811)

Cape Town: Cape Town Society for the Blind, Salt River (Tel 021 448 4302)

Worcester: Kaleidoscope/Institute for the Blind (Tel 023 347 2745)

Customer Care Support 

For account queries or information about Specific Needs products and services;

Call : 082 12580 free from a Vodacom phone and any other phone (standard rates apply)

Email: 12580@vodacom.co.za 

Should you require contacting a Vodacom accessibility expert;

E-mail: specificneedsqueries@vodacom.co.za

Please feel free to communicate your accessibility needs and we will do our best to assist.

Contact Us

  • Call 082 12580 free from your Vodacom phone or from any other phone (standard rates apply)
  • E-mail 12580@vodacom.co.za
  • SMS 12580

Device Priority Repairs 

We are aware that mobile devices have become a lifeline for most people and more so for persons with disabilities.   

As a customer with a disability your device repair will receive priority when you book it in at one of our Customer Repair Centres. 

You are welcome to send an e-mail to specificneedsqueries@vodacom.co.za should you require further information.

Phone for the elderly


What is it?

The Alcatel 2008G large keypad phone is an easy-to-use phone designed for elderly persons whose mobile phone is often their primary means of contact with the outside world.  They mostly use this phone to call friends and family, and it is also their lifeline to get help when they experience an emergency.

Key features of the phone

- Large 2.4” display for easy reading

- The keypad buttons and font is big, bold and easily visible

- Different background colours to choose for making reading easier

- The wireless FM radio to keep you company

- A torch when you need more light

- 2Mpxl camera to capture memories

- A charging cradle to make charging easy

- Talktime up to 16 hours

- 300 SMS capacity



What does it cost?


The recommended selling price of the phone is R599

Contract deals

ALCATEL 2008G BLACK + 10GB DATA X 1 - (H) + TOP DOG VOUCHER @ R49 Reduced Sub PM on uChoose Flexi 55

ALCATEL 2008G BLACK + 10GB DATA X 1 - (H) + TOP DOG VOUCHER @ R99 Reduced Sub PM on uChoose Flexi 150

ALCATEL 2008G BLACK + 10GB DATA X 1 - (H) + TOP DOG VOUCHER @ R129 Reduced Sub PM on uChoose Flexi 200

ALCATEL 2008G BLACK + 10GB DATA X 1 - (C) + TOP DOG VOUCHER @ R99 Reduced Sub PM on Smart XS

ALCATEL 2008G BLACK + 10GB DATA X 1 - (C) + TOP DOG VOUCHER @ R149 Reduced Sub PM on Smart S +

ALCATEL 2008G BLACK + 5GB DATA X 3 - (H) + TOP DOG VOUCHER @ R149 Reduced Sub PM on NXT LVL


Where do I get it?

You can purchase the phone at any of the following channels:

- Vodacom Shops

- To order a phone telephonically, call 082 1950

- To perform an upgrade telephonically, call 082 1959


More Information

Should you have any questions about the Alcatel 2008G phone, you can:

- Call 082 12580 free from your Vodacom phone or from any other phone (standard rates apply)

- E-mail 12580@vodacom.co.za

- SMS 12580 

Special deals for the Deaf and Hearing Impaired


Get more of what you really use & SAVE! 

New deals coming soon

More deals

Interested in a particular device? If you want a smartphone that’s not currently available on a Specific Needs deal, send an email to specificneedsqueries@vodacom.co.za and we’ll get back to you. 


Need help? Please send an e-mail to 12580@vodacom.co.za


SMS bundles for the hearing impaired

We realize that people who are deaf or hearing impaired use SMS as one of their preferred channels of communication, so we are giving our deaf and hearing impaired customers more value to help them stay connected. With this new permanent price offer, if you are deaf or hearing impaired, you can purchase an SMS bundle and receive an additional SMS bundle at no extra cost


Standard SMS bundle for Vodacom customers

New SMS bundle for Vodacom hearing impaired customers

Total cost per bundle

In-bundle SMS

Out-of-bundle SMS (Peak)

Out-of-bundle SMS (Off-peak)
























































Click here for the full brochure.

To request this offer, download the Application Form 

Terms and Conditions apply.


Smartphones compatible with hearing aids

Kindly note: Prior to purchasing a phone, we want to advise that you first discuss the accessibility of the phone with your Audiologist, so that it can be determined whether your specific hearing aid will be compatible with the phone.  It is mainly telecoil hearing aids that are compatible with certain phones. Not all types are hearing aids are compatible with phones.

Customer Care Support

Contact the following Contact Centres;

Send an e-mail to 12580@vodacom.co.za

SMS 12580


tail [Converted]