Cell Phone Buying Guide – So Many Choices

Cell Phone

Cell Phone

By Anne Ahira

Cell phones are not just for answering calls anymore. They can range from basic cell phones to personalized smart phones capable of browsing the web sending text messages and many of the abilities a PC has.

When buying a cell phone, your first decision will be if you want this purchase with a plan (a carrier) or unlocked and capable of recognizing a SIM card from any carrier.

If you purchase a locked cell phone such as the HTC Tilt (TYTN II), PDA Smartphone for AT&T that phone will only recognize a SIM card from AT&T.

On the other hand, an unlocked cell phone such as The Nokia Smartphone will recognize any carrier’s SIM card. If you already have a cell phone carrier that you are happy with and you are not planning to change carriers then the unlocked cell phone is for you.  If not then the wisest choice is to choose a carrier first, and then select the cell phone with the capabilities that meet your needs.

A cell phone can perform multiple functions these days and smart phones are becoming very popular, however do you want more like a Smartphone that works with the carrier of your choice? If so, then plan on paying the price as an unlocked Smartphone like the Motorola DROID compatible with popular carriers such as T-Mobile or AT&T will certainly be more expensive than an unlocked Nokia cell phone with only a camera.

Of course you may not have room for tons of different gadgets and you may want to browse the web, play games, get your news and weather and read your emails all from one little phone with an easy to use interface. Sometimes the price is worth it in terms of capabilities.

Unlocked cell phones are often more expensive than locked cell phones sold by the service provider. The locked cell phones are usually sold with a contract and the carrier makes their profit off the plan. An unlocked phone is the hardware and provides a consumer freedom to change carriers or to change phones on a whim. Only you can select which of these meets your needs better.

Cell Phone Buying Guide– What to Consider When Buying?

If you are choosing an unlocked cell phone then you will need a SIM card and a plan with a carrier. There are many advantages to buying an unlocked cell phone but the cost will be more. With that said, the other side of the coin is you can upgrade, change carriers or use multiple phones when buying an unlocked cell phone and make your cell phone as fancy or plain as you need.

On the other hand if you have not chosen a carrier yet then you can shop for the plan that suits you are calling habits best, choose your cell phone and they will usually be less expensive than the unlocked cell phone and then choose any extras you may feel are useful.  What you cannot do with most cell phones that are purchased from a carrier is change carriers (check the details on the phone) since the cell phones are modified to recognize SIM cards only from one service.

When choosing a cell phone either locked or unlocked then you should keep in mind how you will use it and how much you will use any feature. Smart phones can do many things but for the cell phone user who rarely if ever uses their cell phone and never uses the web and has no interest in taking pictures or any other capability.

Strange as it, sounds there are cell phone users just like that. If you are, then do not buy over what you need no matter how pretty the package. If on the other hand you fond of taking pictures from your cell phone, enjoy playing games online or browsing the web from your phone and short on space for a dozen different gadgets to do it all then choose those extras to make your life easier. You will save money on the other gadgets you do not have to purchase.

Cell phone Buying Guide – Wrapping It Up

You may or may not have a budget in mind when shopping for that new cell phone. You will find more satisfaction though, in getting a phone with only the features you use and can understand as opposed to going for the smartest looking and latest model.

When purchasing a locked cell phone with a carrier plan then choose the service to match your calling habits because 20,000 free nighttime minutes will not do you much good if you only use your cell phone in the daytime for business.

You can easily buy an unlocked cell phone or a plan online and you should consider buying from a merchant with a large selection of plans or unlocked cell phones that will help you compare features on plans against costs.

When choosing an unlocked cell phone a merchant that displays both positive and negative customer reviews is a big plus. You may not agree with other consumer’s views or with their complaints about a particular model of cell phone but it can give you the edge when buying a cell phone type with which you have had no experience.

If you are buying a locked cell phone with a carrier then you may have the option to purchase cell phone insurance with your cell phone. Consider this option because accidents do happen and sometimes an expensive cell phone needs replacement due to accidents or acts of children and other unforeseen circumstances.

If you are buying an unlocked cell phone such insurance may not be available. When purchasing your cell phone online find out if there are shipping costs associated with the cell phone and the approximate arrival date for your purchase. If you are, changing cell phone service providers also find out if your current number can be transferred to your new carrier.

With those few steps, you can buy the right new cell phone or cell phone with a plan for you and not overbuy.


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