How often do you upgrade?

When and why do you get a new device?

Choosing a new phone can be a fun or a daunting experience depending on how much you use your device, how much you know about the market and current technology and of course how much money is in your pocket. One question that isn’t asked very often is why someone is looking for a new device. This simple question can often narrow down the search a lot both for someone trying to help you pick out a new device or make things easier for you if undertaking the task yourself. Is it because it’s the end of your contract? Is your current phone broken? Do you want something better than your friend who keeps flashing his new phone at you every 5 minutes?? The answer can affect what you buy and how often.

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Personally I generally upgrade every couple of generations rather than as soon as something new is released. At this point I find that although my phone is still functional, the lure of new technology with higher speeds, faster processing power and extra storage is something I can’t ignore any more. For instance had I purchased a Galaxy S2 last year like many of my friends I would probably still be using it through this generation and waiting for next year’s inevitable 4th iteration or a change to another manufacturer’s flagship. I actually have an older phone, a Desire S, and have just reached my upgrade threshold – a shiny new Nexus 4 is on its way from Google as soon as they restock. For some though my cycle would be considered too long and skipping a generation is unthinkable!

‘Upgrade’ is also a word used a lot by the network providers. Towards the end of a contract period, you’ll likely be informed that it’s close to upgrade time and you make a trip to the store to see what’s on offer. The network pricing model of higher monthly charges offset with a subsidised cheaper or free phone is highly successful, and for many the only way they ever consider getting hold of a new device, meaning they only ever upgrade when they’re told they can. The alternative of course is to go SIM free and in doing so can be the best way to ‘escape’ the constant cycling of 18/24 month contracts that inevitably end up costing more money.

If you can afford a higher end SIM-free device and the end of your contract is looming I would always recommend the purchase – the upside is that you can then get a much cheaper SIM only rolling contract from your provider and possibly shop around for a new provider without being tempted by any ‘special offers’ they may dangle in front of you. And not to be cynical but you can also avoid a pushy salesperson trying to get you to upgrade to the device that they know makes them the most commission!

Do you upgrade and sign on the line again every time your contract nears the end? Are you a dedicated SIM free fan without a network loyalty? Maybe you have the desire to own the newest piece of technology, even if it’s only 6 months since your last purchase? Share your stories with us below.

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About Josh Bethell

Josh joined Clove part time a few years ago whilst studying Computing at Bournemouth University. Since finishing his studies he has remained at Clove in a full time position, involved in sales, returns and social media.

Involved with both consumer electronics and software since the mid 2000s, keeping up to date with industry developments is as much a hobby as it is a job.

Easy going but never afraid to share an opinion, Josh can often be found in his spare time listening to some heavy rock or at a local gig as well as playing with the latest gadgets and video games.

Comments

  1. About every 4-6 months.

  2. Sanusi Salisu says:

    I always upgrade when my type of Sony Xperia OR Nokia Lumia is released.

  3. Bugblatter says:

    Well I’ve had a POcketLoox 720, an HTC Touch HD, an HTC Touch HD2 and a Samsung S3. That should give you some idea…

    I reckon I’ll upgrade more often now though; the pace of change has really picked up in the last year or two.

  4. William Y. says:

    I been using my Samsung galaxy S t very first generation for two years. Ever since I notice t phone can be upgrade, I push it to t limits . ..I never have any intention to change it even is very lag this few months back. Finally …t note 2 came out with extra features n more processor n faster. I just bought it a week ago. So how do you thinking of my desire. …Thanks

  5. Najeeb Qureshi says:

    I used and am using a nokia 5800 xpress music I usually upgrade my fone when my previous fone dies or it gets broken.

  6. Only when my gadgets break, or when I drunkenly give them to my nephews during family visits.

  7. I like to upgrade my phone every other generation. I feel as if for example the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s are generally the same, minus siri. However, I feel the iPhone 3 and iPhone 4s are completely different and is a perfect example of why I wait to upgrade every so often and not quick to have the “newest” or latest and greatest phone. To me it’s not worth the money for only getting .1 better mega pixels on the camera. That is all.

  8. I got my Lumia 800 last year, which I upgraded to from a Nokia N96. I replaced my 800 so early because its battery and camera are just well below what I expected and they’re the two things I value most in a phone. So my 920 will be here by monday :D After this though I really don’t see my self upgrading for a few years, it’s really way ahead of its time and even though it’s ‘only’ dual-core still plenty fast for me.

  9. Once a year: I only buy Nexus Mobile Phones . . . .

    The exception is this year as I bought two Galaxy Nexus phones as I was a little concerned that one was defunct (It wasn’t) so i gave it to my Cousin’s wife. The other I just sold to my best friend (who buys my year old Nexii) and bout a Nexus 4.