When choosing a new smartphone, it can pay to shop around for the best deal, as they vary greatly in terms of their monthly cost, monthly allowances, phone price and contract length. In this article I will look at these parts of the contract using a popular iPhone 4S deal from O2, and explain the terms of each tariff so you can get the best deal for your needs.
When you take out an iPhone 4S contract, many will offer the handset itself for free, which can mean a great saving as you will not have to pay the several hundred pounds for the cost of the handset. Instead, you will pay a monthly fee, generally over 18 to 24 months. This fee will spread the cost of the phone, as well as including a monthly allowance of calls, texts and data usage. Some contracts will require you to pay for the phone, be it the full price, or a smaller amount. If this is the case you will often find that the monthly payment is considerably lower. A popular O2 contract is called O2 Unlimited + 1GB, and this includes the handset for free and the contract lasts for 24 months.
Just about every iPhone 4S tariff will include a set number of minutes of free phone calls, which can be made to any UK network or non-premium rate landline. The aforementioned O2 plan is one of the most generous out there, offering an unlimited amount of free calls. This is rare these days, as even many more expensive tariffs will still have a monthly limit, no matter how generous. As a bonus, these calls can also be made at any time of the day, even in ‘peak’ times.
The O2 Unlimited +1GB plan for the iPhone 4S also comes with an unlimited number of free text messages every month. Again, even with many more expensive contracts, you will find that there will be a cap on the number of free text messages, so this O2 deal is one of the best out there. Please not, multimedia messages vary from carrier to carrier. Some will provide them for free, whereas others may charge around 10 pence. This is still a small price to pay considering that you get the free text messages and free calls, and most people only use MMS messages occasionally.
As the name suggests, the O2 Unlimited + 1GB plan has a 1GB data allowance per contract month. This is one of the more generous data allowances out there. Because the iPhone 4S is well known for its web browsing abilities, as well as apps which require internet access to work, it pays to opt for a contract with a decent amount of data if you plan on using such features. Although 1GB may not sound like much, it is actually way above the average monthly usage for UK mobile phone users. Also, this allowance only applies to data downloaded via O2’s 3G coverage. Wi-Fi connectivity means you can browse the internet on your iPhone 4S to your heart’s content without using any of your data allowance.
The O2 Unlimited + 1GB plan for the White iPhone 4S costs £36 per month, which makes it one of the most appealing iPhone 4S plans available in the UK. Remember, you also get a free iPhone 4S which would cost £541.99 if you purchased the SIM free phone.
Apple is due to release the iPhone 5 later this year, and this should drive down the cost of many iPhone 4S contracts so you can get an even better deal.
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