Buying a New Mobile FAQ

Buying a new mobile phone can be a complicated process. There are just so many devices on the market to choose from. Today we’re giving you some answers to the most frequently asked questions from people looking to buy a great new phone. So, if you’re in the market for a new mobile, read on to get some of your questions answered.

How Much Should I Expect to Pay?
Mobile pricing varies a lot depending on the features that you want and the model and manufacturer that you choose. For a top of the line mobile you’re looking at paying over five hundred pounds. A decent quality, mid-range smart phone is going to be somewhere around the three hundred pound mark. There are budget smart phone models that can cost only around a hundred pounds, but these phones will lack a lot of the features that you may be looking for.

What Kind of Power Do I Need?
Power and speed are usually the first specs that someone looks for when buying a phone. The CPU, or processor, power is what drives your phone, and the more power you have, the faster your phone will be. However, once you reach a certain point, more power is not going to have a noticeable effect on the speed of your phone if you’re an average user. In general, processing power of around 1.5 GHz is probably going to be more than enough for your needs. You do also need to consider RAM specs when it comes to speed as well though. RAM is the amount of memory that your phone keeps in reserve to use for everyday tasks such as opening apps. The more RAM you have the more responsive your phone will be, and the less likely it will be to slow down, freeze or even crash. You should look for RAM of at least 1 GB, and more is infinitely better.

How Much Internal Memory Should I Get?
The amount of memory your phone has determines how much music and data and how many photos and games you can store on your phone. However, the amount of memory you go for is also a defining factor in how much you’re going to pay. There’s a very significant price difference between a 16 GB phone and a 32 GB phone. Generally, 16 GB is the standard memory size for a good smart phone; you shouldn’t need much more than that. And if you’re a big music fan or like to keep lots of pictures on your phone it’s worth looking for a device that comes with a Micro SD card slot. This will allow you to purchase a relatively cheap memory card from an electronics store and add extra memory to your phone should you need it.

Do I Need a 4G or 3G Mobile?
The majority of devices are still 3G mobile phones, but newer, top end models are coming with 4G. 4G connectivity offers faster mobile internet speeds, meaning that video streaming is smoother and downloads are faster, for example. However, not all mobile operators offer a 4G network, and those that do don’t have 4G coverage in all areas. If you’re considering going for a 4G phone then you need to check first to make sure you have access to a 4G network. There’s no point in buying an expensive 4G device if you can’t connect to 4G internet anyway. For most people a 3G mobile is still the best decision, since you’re guaranteed connectivity. 4G devices are expensive, and 4G data plans are also expensive. And whilst 3G might get slower internet speeds, those speeds are absolutely fine for casual web browsing, map apps and Facebook.

Is Screen Size that Important?
In a word, yes. There are a few things that make screen size and important factor in your phone choice. Firstly, screen size determines how big your phone is, and therefore how portable it is. You want something that’s comfortable to carry around with you. However, on a touch screen smart phone the screen size is important for other reasons. A bigger screen will give you a better viewing experience, so you can watch videos more comfortably, and browse the internet without having to scroll around too much. On top of that, you need to remember that you’re going to be typing on an on screen keyboard. The bigger your screen is, the better you’ll be able to type on your keyboard. Top end phones are hovering around the five inch screen mark, but anything more than 4.5 inches is going to give you a decent phone experience.

Where Should I Buy My Phone?
Lots of places sell mobiles, and choosing the right outlet is key to getting a good price. Mobile service operators all sell phones, but they tend to have the highest prices on the market, so they’re not the ideal place to shop. Normal high street retailers will often carry phones, generally for cheaper than you would find with a mobile operator. This is particularly true if you wait for traditional sale times, such as after Christmas. By far the best place to buy is online. Even if you want to buy from a high street retailer, you’ll probably find that you get a cheaper price by going to their web site and buying there. Of course, it’s important that you know which phone you want before shopping online. It’s a good idea to hit the high street and get a real look at the device you want before buying. But once you’ve done that you’re probably going to save money by going home and buying the same model online.

Which Brands are Best?
Obviously, there are some well-known brands of phone. Apple, Samsung, Nokia and HTC are the big hitters in the mobile world. But every brand has its failures, so buying a big brand name phone is no guarantee that you’re going to get a great device. And equally, there are some smaller brands that have some excellent phones. It’s better to choose a phone by its specs and features than to choose by brand name alone.

When Sam Jones wanted a 3G mobile he didn’t want to settle for the first deal he found. Instead he checked out online price comparison sites like uSwitch and found some really great offers that suited his budget.


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