4 reasons to avoid cellphone contracts and buy mobile devices upfront
Cellphone contracts often unlock great discounts and introductory offers, but buying your phone upfront gives you much more freedom to unlock future savings.
More and more people are deciding to avoid traditional cellphone contracts and instead shop around for unlocked devices that they can use with any carrier.
Here are 4 reasons you should avoid cellphone contracts and buy upfront
1. You won’t be stuck in a long-term commitment with a phone you don’t like
If you purchased a cell phone, but it’s turning out to be a dud, it’s nice to have the freedom to switch to a better device and move on. However, cellphone contracts don’t offer that much wiggle room. If you decide to lease or finance your phone through your carrier, you’ll be stuck paying the phone off for months, or even years. Breaking the contract and ditching your phone early usually means getting slapped with a hefty fee and/or the remaining price of the phone.
Cell phone carriers used to assume that people would need to upgrade their mobile devices every two years to keep up with the latest technology, but today’s phones can last much longer.
2. Cellphone contracts tie you to a certain carrier
If there’s anything worse than being stuck with a lousy cellphone, it’s being stuck with a lousy network. Cellphone providers may be able to lure you in with discounts and impressive phone plans, but service isn’t always as good as promised. Contracts are usually written in the cell phone carrier’s best interest, so it will be difficult for you to leave or retain those discounted introductory rates down the line. Purchasing a phone upfront gives you the freedom to move around to different carriers and get the best deals, potentially helping you save a significant amount of money over time.
3. You’ll have more cellphone models and brands to choose from
Purchasing your phone outright opens up many more doors when it comes to choosing the phone that’s best for you. Carriers often only work with certain companies, and may not offer every model of phone available. Skipping the cellphone contract allows you to shop around and compare products so you get the best device.
This freedom is great if you’re shopping within a specific budget or you want your phone to be optimized for a specific purpose.
4. Skipping the contract keeps your personal information safe
Cyberattacks are unfortunately becoming pretty common, and very advanced. In 2019, investigators discovered that hackers had infiltrated more than a dozen mobile carriers and gained access to users’ private information over the course of seven years, CNET reported. By not having a cellphone contract, you have much more control over your personal data and give hackers less of an opportunity to access your information.
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