I've spoken before about an elderly couple who are longtime family friends. The husband has vision problems and can't go about the way he's been used to. It was decided —too late for me to jump on the Staples ipad deal (long story & I would have honored Ferguson black friday boycott anyway)— that folks would chip in to get him an ipad.
The reason for ipad is that two of his buddies have ipads and some of the family have iphones so they can help a little with him learning how to use it. He's not very tech savvy and definitely doesn't need the newest shiny thing. Because of the vision problems, it probably should have the retina display and voice recording. I expect he would use it for audiobooks, email, pandora, apps for reading/listening to newspapers, possibly Skype, and some specialized apps for vision impairment. I don't think camera/video is all that important. Would like to not go over $450
The 3rd & 4th gen ipads have those features, run the most recent OS and can be had at a 32gb for a good price. However, I am a little afraid that soon the software updates will outpace the capacity of the machine and it won't be something that could be resold if he doesn't end up using it. My friends who have iphone 4/4s who upgraded to latest software are really sorry about that now.
tl;dr —trying to get an ipad for a senior with low vision. Looking for the sweet spot between capacity/update-ability and price. If you have a suggestion or can share the question to the right kinja, I would appreciate it.