To buy or not to buy!

It’s that time of the cycle when everybody’s expecting the release of the latest iPhone and first time iPhone buyers are skeptical if they should buy the current version or wait for the new one to release in a couple of months. So here’s the lowdown on what to do in this tricky situation for all the people yearning to get an iPhone.

Firstly, it’s kind of a tough place to be in with a ‘dumb phone’ that you want to exchange. It’s great if you can hold onto your dumb phone for a few more months until you’re eligible for an upgrade from your service provider as Apple is expected to release its latest iPhone in September for about $200. And if it does what it has done in the past then you can grab the little older iPhone 4S for $100 as Apple usually slashes the prices of the older versions by $100 once the new one is released. But if waiting is not your cup of tea and you are not eligible for an upgrade then you can consider your replacement insurance. But if you don’t have replacement insurance too then you’ll have to buy a brand new phone for which you can choose to opt for the following choices:

  • Buy a brand new iPhone at the full price Or
  • Buy a used or refurbished one which will cost less but it wont be as inexpensive as buying an iPhone with a subsidized rate from a carrier.
  • A third option would be to buy a cheap phone now just to make-do and then use your upgrade once you’re eligible for it to buy the latest iPhone.

In any case, whether you’re buying a new iPhone or a refurbished one or any phone for that matter, eBay is the place to go. Apple and Verizon charge $650 for a brand new 16 GB iPhone 4S and the older iPhone 4 will cost you $550 from Apple or Verizon. The resale value of an iPhone is quite good so even the used or refurbished ones are not cheap. A new phone will cost the most and a refurbished one a little less and the used one is the cheapest bet. The difference between a used and refurbished phone is that the refurbished ones are tested by a third party to see if they work and the data of the previous owner is wiped clean and the phone is restored to its factory settings. So obviously it’s the opposite case with a used iPhone and there’s a risk that the device might not work properly as it hasn’t been tested and there might be data from the previous owner on the device which is more of a problem for the previous owner than you but still it’s a hassle for you. for those of you who are impatient and have to have an iPhone now then note that the latest iPhone currently is the iPhone 4S which was introduced last fall and id fairly expensive than the previous versions. On eBay, you can get a new 16GB iPhone 4S for about $510. A used one is $369 and a refurbished one is $500. A brand new iPhone 4 is going for about $415 on eBay. You can get a used one for about $210 and a refurbished one for $330.

However, getting older versions of the iPhone is not recommended for the simple reason that they’re old and is really not worth it to pay for a device that’s already two generations old. The smart thing to do would be to wait until you’re eligible for an upgrade from your service provider and until then you could either buy a cheap phone from eBay or better still borrow one from a friend. And when you can upgrade your contract with your service provider, you can upgrade to the new iPhone for just $200 or even iPhone 4S for $100 if you want to save money.

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