Still, when you’re planning on spending hundreds of pounds on a handset that you’ll likely use every day for at least the next year, it’s worth making sure that you get the right version of the iPhone 5 - and at the right price.
First up you should consider what network you want to go with. It’s so easy to port your number that there’s no need to stay on your current network, on the other hand some networks reward loyalty, so you may get a better deal renewing with your current network than going elsewhere.
The biggest thing to consider when choosing a network (other than price) is coverage. After all, there’s no point going with a network that has patchy signal in your area, so check who your friends and colleagues are with and ask them if they get good signal.
If you live in one of the areas where 4G has already been rolled out, or are just forward thinking, then it may be worth going with a network that supports 4G too. 4G is a lot faster than 3G and well worth taking advantage of if you tend to check your emails or browse the net on the move. Right now only EE (which owns T-Mobile and Orange) offer 4G in the UK and you can still only get it in a limited number of places, but they’re expanding their coverage all the time.
The other networks will likely get access to 4G later in the year, but if you don’t want to wait that long and don’t want to use EE, then consider Three, as they currently offer ‘Ultrafast’. It’s twice as fast as 3G and as soon as they have access to 4G it will be added to Ultrafast contracts at no additional cost.
Perhaps the biggest decision that you need to make is whether to get that shiny new iPhone 5 on contract or buy it outright on pay as you go. There’s no right or wrong answer to that, it depends on your own circumstances.
You may balk at the £500+ price of it on pay as you go, but in the long run that could end up a lot cheaper than paying around £40 a month on contract. Check what you actually get with the contract other than the phone, and consider how many minutes, texts and megabytes of data you actually need. Also bear in mind the duration of the contract, if it’s two years for example, are you happy using the same phone and paying the same price every month for that duration?
In many cases pay as you go works out better, but don’t bankrupt yourself over it, if you can’t afford or justify a lump sum that size then stick to a contract. Either way it’s worth doing a bit of shopping around before parting with your hard earned cash. Beyond just checking out the prices on the networks websites you should also check other retailers like Carphone Warehouse and independent websites. A quick Google search should turn up most of the reputable retailers, but it’s also worth keeping an eye on our site for some of the latest and greatest deals.
Once you've found the best price you can online you may yet be able to beat it if you don’t mind a bit of haggling. Head to the high street, prices in hand, and have a chat with the sales staff in a phone shop. Generally they work to targets, so they’re prepared to make concessions to get a sale, particularly if you come armed with the knowledge of competitor’s prices. You may be able to get them to beat whatever price you've found or chuck in a few extras, and if not it needn't be a wasted trip, use the opportunity to have a play on the iPhone 5 and make sure that it’s definitely the phone that you want.
When you buy a new phone, particularly one as expensive as the iPhone 5, you’re likely to have it for quite awhile. In the case of the iPhone 5 there’s also no way to expand the storage space, so the amount that you buy with it is the amount you’ll be stuck with.
You should consider whether the basic 16GB model will be enough, or whether you wouldn't be better off paying a bit more for 32GB or 64GB of storage. The answer will really come down to what you intend to use it for. For many people 16GB will be plenty, but if you plan to load it up with music, videos, apps or games you could quickly find that storage slip away and may end up in a position where you have to delete things to make room for anything else, so think carefully before you buy.
By now you should have all the information you need to make an informed buying decision, but once you’ve got the phone there are a few ways that you can personalise or even improve it.
For example, while the battery life on the iPhone 5 is fairly decent, it could definitely be better. To improve it all you have to do is outfit it with a Mophie Juice Pack Helium. It’s a case with a built in battery, boosting the overall battery life by 80%. Better yet, being a case it offers the iPhone 5 some protection too.
If you don’t feel the need for a battery boost there are plenty of other cases you can buy, giving your iPhone 5 varying degrees of protection. It’s also definitely worth outfitting it with a screen protector to keep it safe from scratches.
With your iPhone 5 bought and protected you’re ready to experience one of the best smartphones that money can buy- so enjoy!
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