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Choosing a Wireless Device

It's a Personal Decision
One of the most important decisions you need to make when switching or starting new wireless phone service is which phone model or wireless device to choose. It may also be the most difficult and the most personal. What works for others may not work for you, and manufacturers continually add new features and gimmicks to make the newest phone more desirable than the last.

Choose the Network First
Phone choice shouldn't be your first decision in selecting a wireless service because you need to establish which cellular carriers are available in your area before you can look at any phone. Once you have determined which carriers serve your area and which plans fit your usage, the handset is next. Today's choices can be overwhelming. If you wanted a certain phone model you need to check to see if it is offered by a carrier that covers your area. Smart phones come in a wide variety of capabilities and you can save substantially by choosing a more modest model. The world of Apps allows you to add almost any feature the phone doesn't have pre-installed. How do you take that next step?

Where to Start Your Search
We recommend you start searching for your next phone at a local wireless store that features multiple carriers, even Wal-Mart. Don't let them rush you into a purchase. ("No thanks, I'm just looking"). Then you have some great online shopping resources like Moose Wireless who finds better prices than brick & mortar stores. Step back, review your notes, and then go for it. Our family usually chooses the cheapest model that fills our minimum needs. We caution you to not over-analyze your choices in Don't Sweat Your Phone Choice. You also have the choice of a subsidized model that could drop your price substantially, or you can avoid a contract by paying full price. Many carriers will allow you to make monthly payments which keeps you on the hook until it's paid off. There are also "Promotions" that could greatly reduce your phone price, even without a contract, with the only obligation to remain a customer for a few months.

Don't Fall In Love
Don’t fall in love with a certain phone model. Narrow your choice to certain carriers and plans first, then choose among their handsets. We recommend Phonescoop where you can compare specifications, side-by-side, and Moose Wireless for the best online deals. Even the greatest phone in the world will be disappointing on an inadequate network. If a smaller network has the best combination of coverage and features, you’d be foolish to ignore them.

Maybe Your Current Phone is the Best Choice
Often you can use your existing handset on a different network at a substantial savings. The technology must be compatible and that your current phone is paid for. Switching a SIM among GSM phones is an effective method in some cases, but not always. This opens the possibility of buying a phone elsewhere, but you’re on your own for help if that model is not supported by your chosen carrier. Buying on your own eliminates the need to sign a contract You can also avoid contracts by going Prepaid. Carriers now must allow you to "unlock" your phone after a reasonable period of time. We have a whole web site dedicated to buying or switching to a non-contract wireless service at

OK, Let's Review: Service First, Device Second. Then, don't look back...


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