Black Friday is just around the corner and the biggest shopping day of the year could be a great time to pack your shiny new smartphone.
That said, given that so many deals can be closed at once, Black Friday can be a little overwhelming for even the most ardent bargain hunters.
Here, we’ll try to give you some tips on what to look for when buying a new phone to hopefully point you in the right direction based on our expert knowledge of what’s on the market and experiences from past Black Fridays.
Check out the best phones
If you’ve decided you want to buy a new phone, then it’s best to start by determining which ones are the best and for which budgets. We’ve got guides for the best phones, the best Android phones, the best iPhones, the best mid-range phones, the best camera phones, and the best cheap phones.
They cover all the big devices we’ve tested extensively throughout 2021 (and in previous years), at different price points. However, not all phones make it to these lists, so it’s worth checking out our archive of mobile reviews as well.
These are all good starting points for getting to know what’s on the market, especially if you haven’t updated for a while.
You’re not always looking for the latest phones
However, don’t feel like you need to buy the latest smartphone. In fact, often some of the best Black Friday phone deals are older models that still have surpluses in stores.
For example, it’s worth looking at the prices at which 2020 flagships like the Galaxy S20 are falling. Samsung’s efforts in 2020 have been better than the Galaxy S21 in some ways, thanks to a sharper display and brighter design.
Older iPhones often offer great deals too, and they usually qualify for the latest iOS software.
Check how much time is left on your contract
There are two main ways to buy a phone – without a SIM card or on a contract basis. The latter is still a more popular choice, especially for more expensive devices, as you can spread the cost over 24 months (on average). SIM-free phones do not tie you to such a contract, but they do require much higher upfront costs.
If you’re looking for a phone this Black Friday and you currently have a contract, it’s best to check how much time you have left under the agreement. If you’re happy to stay in a monthly billing deal, then there are often great savings from networks (EE, Vodafone, Three, O2etc.) and resellers such as Carphone warehouse and Mobiles.co.uk…
Would you rather not have a SIM card in your phone?
If you have a valid SIM-only deal that you’re happy to use for your next phone, then SIM-free phones are a great choice.
Keep track of prices and start searching now
If there’s a particular phone you’ve got your eye on, like the Samsung Galaxy S21 or OnePlus 9, keep an eye on prices now and ahead of Black Friday to see if they rise or fall.
Handy tools like the Amazon Keepa plugin are a good way to see the overall rise and fall in prices.