Are you ready to purchase the latest and greatest Smart Phone?

For the past ten years, consumers have seen their choices of smart phones change rapidly. It seems like every couple of months smart phones with new innovative technologies and applications are being advertised. Of course, they wouldn’t be building these phones if consumers didn’t have an increasing appetite for the most advanced state-of-the art technology. According to smartinsights.com, since 2007 there has been a 375% increase in smart phone users across the globe.  And I know a lot of people who use smart phones less for making and receiving phone calls and more for all the other features. They use it for email, social media access, banking convenience, navigating, health tracking, and camera features to name a few. Smart phones have become something most people cannot live without and might just be one of the greatest inventions of the 21st century. We seem to be attracted more and more to the immediate need for information and entertainment.

However, there is a cost to this. Smart phones, along with their data plans, are very expensive when compared to having a simple mobile phone that’s only used for making phone calls and texting. Based on research with one mobile phone provider, here’s an estimate of how much a smart phone could cost you until you become eligible to upgrade to the next smart phone (plan types and pricing can vary widely among providers, so make sure to do your research):

Based on a $650     

Smart Phone

Plan 1  upgrade after 12 months Plan 2  upgrade after 18 months Plan 3 upgrade after 24 months Plan 4  upgrade after 12 months Plan 5  upgrade after 24 months
Down Payment None None None $195 $199.99
Activation/Upgrade Fee $15 $15 $15 $15 $45
Monthly Installment $32.50 for 12 months

$390

$27.09 for 18 months

$488

$21.67 for 24 months

$520

$16.25

for 12 months

$195

None
Total $405 $503 $535 $405 $244.99
Less discounted monthly access charge $15 per month

-$180

$15 per month

-$270

$15 per month

-$360

$15 per month

-$180

None
Total Cost                            (This is what you’ll pay for the phone until you’re eligible to upgrade) $225

 

$232.62

 

$175.08

 

$225

 

$244.99

 

Sounds confusing? It’s really not. The advantages of having different plans to choose from helps you to calculate what that phone is actually costing you before you are eligible to upgrade to the next phone.  It also shows you what monthly installment you’d consider paying and how long you are willing to wait until you can upgrade to your next phone – 12, 18 or 24 months. As you can see, the total cost you end up paying for that smart phone varies significantly depending on the plan you choose.

So when making your decision, the key factor is to shop around and compare both the cost of the smart phone and the plan you need. Here’s a great resource to get you started if you’re one of those who can’t live without having the next state-of-the-art smart phone: http://www.whistleout.com/CellPhones.

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