Thinking of Buying a New Phone? Answer These 5 Crucial Questions First

Key Points
  • Evaluating Necessity vs. Desire: Before splurging on the latest smartphone, consider if your current phone meets your needs. Many phones today, like the iPhone 15 or Samsung Galaxy S23, are attractive but come with hefty price tags, prompting a reevaluation of want versus need.

  • Assessing Features and Usage: Question the necessity of new features such as fingerprint sensors or extra camera options. High-end features increase the price, and their novelty may wear off if they don't align with your actual usage patterns.

  • Long-Term Value and Cost Considerations: Consider how long you will use the new phone and whether it offers significant improvements over its predecessor. With rapid tech advancements, even expensive phones quickly become outdated, raising the question of whether it's wiser to save the money or wait for future models that offer more substantial upgrades.

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    So, you're tempted to snag that shiny new smartphone, right? But wait a minute—do you really need a new phone? Now's the perfect time to differentiate between what you want and what you actually need. A few years ago, the hottest phones didn't sport today's advanced features or hefty price tags. Plus, carriers used to lure us with sweet deals, making it a breeze to upgrade once your contract wrapped up.

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    Fast forward to today, and it's a whole new ballgame. Take a gander at the likes of the iPhone 15 or Samsung Galaxy S23—gorgeous, but wallet-thinning! Opting for an unlocked model? Brace yourself for a hefty bill. Sure, carriers still dangle tempting plans, but now you're looking at commitments stretching up to 30 months.

    Not every phone will drain your bank account, though. There are still some budget-friendly options out there. But before you pull out your wallet, pause and ponder these five essential questions.

    Does my phone work well?

    This is the first question you should ask yourself. Are you experiencing any glitches? Or does your phone work just fine? Even if you do experience some glitches every now and then, keep in mind that you can probably fix them on your own. You can do that with just a few taps or with the help of some useful apps.

    As mentioned, it’s important to separate our wants and needs. A smartphone is needed, but if the one you have now works well, why spend money on a new one? This is especially important if you are tight on a budget. So, consider these things before you rush to the store or to your carrier to get one of the latest tech pieces.

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    Do I really need some extra features?

    Watching all those ads showing a new design and features makes you want to buy the phone. We all know that feeling. Fingerprint sensors, iris scanners, extra camera options, etc., all sound cool. But, it’s time to ask yourself, do you really need those?


    The more features, especially the new feature – the higher price. Imagine buying a phone with a fingerprint sensor, and after a while, you stop using that fingerprint sensor. It all sounds cool and great, but you will probably find it boring after a while, especially if you are not a tech addict. If your phone has the things you need and use, perhaps you don’t have to get a new one. At least not yet.

    How long will I use my new phone?

    If you consider buying a phone worth hundreds of dollars, you must think about how long you will use it. Remember the good old times of the Nokia 3310 and similar phones. You buy it and use it for years. They were sturdy and trendy.

    The times have changed. Now you spend $800 or more for a new iPhone or Samsung, and the following year, you’ll want a new one. Of course, the new one will have more features and more color options; it will have more of everything.

    Manik Roy / Unsplash

    Even if you are not planning to buy an expensive device, but one of the affordable ones, compare it with your phone. Is it really that much better? Will you use it for two or three years? If not, keep that money in your pocket for a little longer.

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    Is a new model really that better than its predecessor?

    This is the next question. You may think it is, but let’s face it, the differences are usually not that huge. Even the design of the phones does not change too much. We have the iPhone as a great example.


    We have the iPhone as a great example. Everyone expected the iPhone 15 to be completely different from its predecessors. However, iPhone fans were left a bit disappointed once it became available. Basically, the same design with just a few more features. Is it worth switching to? Probably not, especially if you have an iPhone 11 or 12. Another thing you should keep in mind is that the longer you wait, the lower the price gets.

    Should I save for something else?

    Budget is crucial when shopping. Even if you are not on a tight budget, ask yourself if you should save your money for something else you really need? Or should you save for some other model?

    Put your priorities first. And even if you don’t have some priority shopping now, perhaps you may save the money for some high-end model, something really awesome. Don’t forget one more thing. The phones just keep coming out. Every year, there is an iPhone, high-end Samsung phone, LG, Huawei, HTC, etc. Perhaps it would be wiser to save. When the time comes, you may purchase the next best smartphone. Who knows?


    If a new phone is not a need but a desire, it is just a shopping impulse. We all have it. And these days, when new phones keep coming out looking all shiny and nice, we simply want to spend the money on them.

    Before the shopping impulse takes you over, ask yourself these questions.

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