Your contract is almost over, meaning it’s time to upgrade. Lucky you. Here’s our guide to everything you need to know since you last upgraded.
One of the biggest changes to contracts is 4G. First, a quick explanation. There are two main ways for your phone to get online. There’s Wi-Fi, which is found in offices, at coffee shops and might even be how your internet works at home. Wi-Fi only works when you’re near a Wi-Fi router. Then there’s 3G and 4G mobile internet. This goes directly to your phone from it’s network reception, and can be used anywhere.
When you access the mobile internet with your old contract, you were using 3G. 4G is similar, but is up to five times faster and more reliable, making it perfect for streaming videos and music. It’s the future of mobile internet. When you’re upgrading, 4G is something you should look into and find out if it’s right for you. Our 4G Comparison Hub, has all the information you need.
When you’re searching for a new deal, keep in mind that your data use will be much higher than a couple of years ago. Your contract will need to include enough data so that in a year’s time, when apps are more advanced and you want to use your phone for more things, you still have enough data.
If you get a 4G tariff you’ll also want to add more data. 4G is so much more practical than slower connections, so you’ll find yourself using it more often.
And don’t forget your shiny new phone. It’ll probably have a larger screen and be faster than your old one. You’ll be using it more, so you definitely want enough data to make the most of it.
Smartphones can now do much more than ever before. In fact, they’re so different from two years ago that we’ve had to dedicate a separate article to explain what’s new. So if you want to know what’s changed in the smartphone world in the last couple of years, visit our article here.
In August 2012 a new mobile network was announced, EE. If your current network is Orange or T-Mobile, you might be better off upgrading to EE. This is because Orange and T-Mobile are actually part of the EE network. The difference is quite simple. Orange and T-Mobile offer only 3G contracts, EE offers 4G. The three networks also have slightly different added extras. You can still upgrade to Orange or T-Mobile if you like, but EE probably gives you the best upgrade option.
Your contract price is likely to stay the same, or maybe drop or rise by a few pounds, depending on the type of phone you’re looking for. This doesn’t mean you’re not getting better value though. Now you get more minutes and texts for your money – many contracts actually include an unlimited amount.
You’ll also get more internet data, and if you opt for a 4G contract, faster internet too. All the major networks give you excellent new freebies, such as free mobile TV or music downloads.
And don’t forget the new phone you get will be streets ahead of your old one.
Of course, price still might be something that’s very important to you. That’s why Carphone Warehouse has the Compare and Save Upgrade Promise. If you want to upgrade with your current network, and find a deal cheaper than ours, we will match it and pay your first month.
You can learn more about the next great phones, even before they're announced, on our Launchpad Rumour pages. Or, head over to our YouTube channel to keep up with what's happening in the mobile world. We'll be at the best technology shows, get you all the news about the latest phones, and post video reviews of our favourite gadgets.