Choosing a Network Provider for Your Next Apple Smartphone

If your cell phone contract is up or you are feeling ready to upgrade to the latest and greatest iPhone, you might want to consider a jump to a new provider. A switch might get you a better service, better price or both. Here are some tips to get the best deal and best overall experience with your purchase and new service.

  • Some network contracts include the cost of the smartphone, spread out over the length of a contract. Others have you buy the phone outright, but have a lower monthly fee, with or without a contract. Some will lease you the smartphone and add the lease cost into your monthly bill. When you leave or get a new phone, you will simply turn in the old phone and have your data transferred to the new one. This can make the decision process confusing, because it may not be clear what deal has the best price. You need to compare apples to apples, (pardon the pun,) and oranges to orange. Instead of just looking at phone price or monthly bill, consider the total cost of ownership instead.

    On average, Apple comes out with a new iPhone model once per year. If you are someone who is always an early adopter and like to have the latest-and-greatest product, add up all the monthly fees and phone costs into one number that represents a yearly total cost. If you usually wait a bit longer to upgrade, figure a price over 2 years. This may show you large price differences between one deal or another.

  • Realize that there is not just one price per provider. Besides going into your local Verizon or AT&T store, for example, other retailers like electronic stores also sell their service. You might go there and get a cheaper overall price that in the main store. Also check Groupon Coupon deals, like this page of discount offers for Straight Talk.
  • Consider buying a model right after a newer model comes out. For example, the day the iPhone 7 comes out, the iPhone 6s price will most likely drop by 50%.
  • Read the fine print on contracts or service agreements. Canceling some contracts can result in penalties of $350 per line or more. Some plans may come with too little data transfer for your normal usage. Going over the limit may result in hefty overage fees. Other plans may offer a large limit, but reduce your speed dramatically after you pass 1 or 2 gigabytes of transfer. Check your old phone bill to determine an average personal data usage. Make sure that if you are not happy with the service that you are able to leave without massive fees.
  • If you are changing providers, ask other local customers, on social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter about their experiences with service providers reliability and customer service in your area. You may find that a provider that you have used in the past, in another state, for example, has a giant dead zone that sits right over your town, or that service in town is ok, but anywhere outside the city limits you lose signal. If you start to see a pattern in the responses, you would be wise to follow your friends advice. Thankfully, you will probably also hear about people who are completely happy with their provider.

Follow these tips and you will find that you will end up with a good deal and the best possible provider for your needs.

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