If you're considering your first cell phone, there are some specific things to consider. How you plan to use your phone and what kind of plan you want for your phone are a couple of the points that you should keep in mind. Take a look at some of the common issues that people face when buying cell phones.
Free phones are one of the most common gimmicks cell phone service providers use to get your business. Cell phones are expensive, and the newer designs and technology are often very expensive. But you have to weigh the cost of the particular cell phone being offered in with the cost of your phone plan.
If you're considering a company that offers a specific cell phone for free, find out how much that phone retails for. Check the price from the company you're working with and from some competitors. If the phone only retails for $100 or so (and yes, there are cell phones still available in that price range), the phone probably doesn't have the latest security and may not have some important technologies. You may find that your phone plan includes free mobile-to-mobile calling, but calls to and from that particular phone model are still charged as usual. In a case like this, you may be better off purchasing your phone outright instead of signing a contract that will keep your service constant for a set period of time.
Carefully consider insurance when you take out your phone policy. Some people simply buy the insurance without a second thought while others say it's not worth it. Both may be wasting money. If you have an older cell phone or an inexpensive model, the insurance may be a waste. But cell phones aren't especially durable and you may find that you're running the risk of being without a cell phone if you don't take out the policy.
Check the cost of your phone if you had to replace it. Add up the total amount of the insurance over the course of your contract (remember that you'll probably be eligible for a new phone free or at a reduced cost when the contract is to be renewed) and compare that to the cost of replacing the phone. Like any insurance policy, the rest is a simple matter of weighing the risks.
Jeff Lakie is the founder of Cell Phone Resources a website providing information on Cell Phones