Mobile phones aren't going away anytime soon, and it's common for people to have more than one. Finding the cheapest mobile phone deal isn't always easy with all of the competition, but let me see if I can help. I used to run a mobile phone store, and learnt a thing or two.
Step 1 - know what you want. If you're looking for just a cheap mobile phone to make calls on thats fine. You're buying on running cost alone. If you're buying on features or fashion then you need to have at worst a short list of 3 phones that fit the bill.
Step 2 - check out the local stores. You should be able to get a handset in your hand and compare deals that are on offer. This may get confusing, but in reality you only need to compare each deal against the cheapest. As one becomes cheaper than the last or one after, you ca discard the more expensive deals.
Step 3 - make sure the deals will match your usage. I often found customers would fool themselves about how much they would use the phone. This was a common affliction affecting people from all walks of life. Be honest with yourself.
Step 4 - Now the fun begins. Make yourself your favourite drink and start looking through the websites offering mobile phones. Do a search for “Cheap mobile phone deals" and you'll find many pages. Try to aim for review or comparison pages - they do a lot of the work for you. Once again you are only comparing each deal with the cheapest. You should easily beat the best of the mobile phone store offers online. By now you should have a very clear idea about the phone that you want and the tariff you're looking for. Simply sign up online!
Step 5 - make a note of when the contract comes to an end, and also mark of the dates of any cash back deals you did - you will often have to claim it back at allotted times or lose it. About 2 weeks before the end of your contract, search around again. Deals change all of the time I'm afraid, and your mobile phone provider won't automatically put you onto their cheapest deal.
Having been an ex mobile phone store manager I have put together my own page with the best deals. I review it regularly to make sure the best of the web is represented here. Just go to http://www.mobilephonesonline.co.uk