Shop When Buying Cell Phones

Cell phones are for many of us a requirement for modern living. But that doesn’t mean we should go broke getting one.
So please do the math when you’re looking into a cell phone.
What do I mean? Well most wireless providers will sell you a phone and they advertise these great deals. What they don’t tell you is that advertised price is actually the down payment. Let’s use an example and we’ll call the company BW. BW advertises the latest Samsung middle of the road phone for $299 for new customers with a contract. What you find out later if you look closer is the added monthly charge built into the service, typically $40 a month through the life of a contract in a two year contract. 
So the actual cost for the phone? Simple math $40 x 24 is $480 and then the down payment of $299 and the cost of the $300 phone is actually $779.
Sit down and do the math with any provider and ask questions.
Then go out and look at unlocked phone options. A 3G Motorola Moto-G can be had with an added Micro-SD card for less than $180. The same is true for the 4G LTE Motorola Moto-E, which can be bought with a 32gb Micro-SD card for about $150 dollars. These are perfectly suitable phones that work quite well. With a little memory management most people would be perfectly happy. A savings of around five hundred dollars. That’s a hefty savings.
But what if you’re a real power hound, love downloading apps and maxing out every bit of CPU that phone can handle? Buying a top of the line phone is feasible too. A Google Nexus 6 can be had for around $700, equivalent with the full finance picture of a middle of the road phone.
Or what if you want more versatility to switch it up between providers. The US is starting to see unlocked dual SIM cell phones creep into the market. Some are even capable of 4G LTE. An example is the Asus Zenfone 2. It’s not for everyone, but it’s an option.
Another thing to consider is that many of the 4G LTE phones require a SIM card, so that’s beginning to remove the lack of portability between providers.  Do your homework with your hardware, provider and plan and do the math. It could save you quite a bit.

Author: 21Buzzards

Retired military reservist and corporate helping parent a grandchild. Sharing my evolution as age and priorities impact life.

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