The Smart Way to Invest in the Best Smartphone for You

Not so long ago, people picked up a smartphone along with a service plan, kept the device until the plan ended, and then swapped it out for a new one. Even though consumers valued their phones, they didn't think of them as a long-term investment.
As smartphone technology advanced, phones increased in price and shoppers began to spend more time evaluating their purchase. Find out how to get the most value by purchasing the best smartphone.

How Expensive Are the Best Smartphones?

As Computerworld pointed out, the price of popular phones has grown along with advances in phone technology. For the top-line models for both Apple and Androids, expect to pay from about $800 to over $1,200. Of course, some less-expensive phones can still provide a good value. At the lower end, the Motorola One only costs about $400.
Still, the new Galaxy Fold costs almost $1,900, or more than the cost of some top-rated refrigerators. Meanwhile, consumers expect to keep their refrigerators for decades rather than a few years. People expect large appliances to last longer because they include less fragile parts and, of course, nobody takes their refrigerator out with them. So phones are naturally more prone to damages than large devices that just sit at home.

How Can Phone Buyers Enjoy the Best Phone Value?

Of course, consumers can find cheaper phones that may only cost a few hundred dollars. You may have to make compromises in features, though. A new phone purchase means figuring out which features matter the most and then anticipating how long the phone can deliver good service.
That means people need to shop for the best phone by considering a few things they may not have thought about in the past:
  • Expectation of the device's useful lifespan: This might include guarantees for manufacturer updates, the phone's ability to adapt to new tech, or even its potential resale value. As an example, manufacturers will generally provide a guarantee that they will provide security and OS updates for a certain length of time. Once these updates stop, the phone has probably neared the end of its useful life.
  • Individual preferences about timing new phone purchases: Sometimes, phone users simply want to trade up for a phone with more features, so they might want to consider the phone's expected value for resale. As an example, a relatively expensive Samsung Galaxy will probably maintain its retail value longer than the cheaper Moto One.
  • Consideration of extended warranties: Manufacturer warranties generally only protect customers against defects from production or distribution for a short time. An extended warranty from Upsie can protect phone owners against problems that might show up later and accidental damage from liquid spills, bumps, or drops. That way, phone owners can keep their phone in tip-top shape for as long as possible.

How Long Do Smartphones Last?

According to Statistica, people have been keeping their smartphones somewhat longer than they used to:
  • Average mobile phone lifespan in 2015: About 2.5 years
  • Average mobile phone lifespan in 2020: About 2.87 years
  • Anticipated mobile phone lifespan in 2023: About 2.88 years
Other sources say that people could expect an updated and well-maintained phone to last as long as five years. Some folks may not tend to keep them that long because damages to unprotected phones exceed the cost of replacements. In other cases, they may simply want a smartphone with all of the newest tech and features.
Either way, phone shoppers should consider how long they intend to keep the phone when they compare different models. First, new phones have gotten increasingly expensive. Also, obviously a good used phone can command a higher resale value than an obsolete, worn, or damaged one.

How to Protect Smartphones

A good extended warranty can help protect phones longer because they will dramatically reduce the cost of repairs and even provide more accessible and convenient repair options. Almost every retailer will offer an extended warranty. At the same time, phone buyers should know that they can shop around for extended warranties to ensure that they get the best value.
As an example, compare Upsie's subscription warranties to Best Buy's phone warranties. Upsie has a 24/7 phone line for customer service claims and can often offer choices between local, certified shops (even Genius Bar for iPhone repairs) and mail-in repairs. But Best Buy limits repairs to Geek Squad. At the same time, Upsie warranties generally cost less and cover more kinds of incidents.
To start comparing phone warranties for various phone makes and models, simply visit the phone warranty page, find your model, and see the transparent coverage and pricing. Just as consumers should consider value when they make a phone purchase, they should also ensure they buy the best warranty.

Learn More About Smartphone Protection Plans:

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* This article is over 6 months old and may or may not be updated.