Choosing your mobile provider can be a little bit nerve-racking. With so many options out there, how on earth are you supposed to make the choice that’s best for you?
Making a good decision involves taking into consideration a number of factors; the price, the phone you want to use, the type of contract that’s most convenient for you, the amount of data you’re likely to consume, the perks included, your geographical location – and that’s not all. Fortunately, we’re here to take you through the key elements you need to think about.
Price and allowances
This is probably going to be the most important factor – and, warning, it’s going to require a little bit of research.
First of all, you need to decide what sort of contract you prefer. You might like Pay As You Go deals, which mean you top up your phone with credit regularly. You can also pay a monthly fee for a set period.
You’ll need to survey the market in the area where you live and decide what you get in return for your deal – how much data are they offering and what are the charges for texts and calls?
Plus, crucially, what are their data allowances – and how hefty are the charges when you exceed the limit? If you’re someone who watches a lot of videos and consumes a lot of data, your allowances need to be more generous, otherwise you’ll incur significant costs.
Additionally, if you go for a monthly contract, make sure you check how long you’re going to be nailed down to it for. The options usually include a year or two years – consider whether you’re happy to go ahead, as you’ll have to pay a fee if you want to leave before the expiration date.
There’s nothing worse than choosing a network and subsequently discovering your signal is constantly appalling. It’s equivalent to throwing money down the drain.
Make sure, then, that your area is covered by the network. Unsurprisingly, the networks are probably not going to tell you, so ask your friends and family about the ones to avoid.
If there’s a particular phone you desperately want to use, make sure your network offers it, otherwise you’ll be left disappointed. Not all networks offer the same models.
Do you want to watch videos while you’re commuting? You’re going to need 4G – which is much faster than 3G.
You’ll need to choose a deal which includes 4G, but, once again, you’ll have to check whether your area is covered and consider whether you really need it (no point paying extra if you’re only glancing at Facebook occasionally while you’re on the move!).
So, there we have it, your must-have guide to choosing a mobile provider. If you have more questions about your mobile phone, just ask.