Smartphone shopping is hard, well, at least to a newbie like me! Blackberry, iPhone, Android… what’s the difference, which features will you use, which don’t matter to you? What do your friends use, what do the reviews say? Then when you finally decide on a phone, you have to pick a carrier & a plan! How much data? How many minutes? Exhausting to say the least, especially when you don’t have a clue how much you are even going to use it.
For 6 years now I have been using the same phone, a Nokia with absolutely no bells or whistles on a pay-as-you-go plan, purchased for emergencies. For the last 3 of those years, I have been caught saying on a regular basis “I will buy a new phone when this phone dies”… secretly hoping the fate of my phone would come soon. I couldn’t justify shelling out all that money for a new phone when mine worked perfectly fine. Well, not perfectly – it had its little quirks – randomly shutting down, sending me 3 days worth of texts at once, telling me I had a voice mail when there was none at all, but technically it still worked for its purpose – emergencies. Little did I know, I purchased “the phone that wouldn’t die”. It became a joke for me. I would give the phone to my kids to play with, they would throw it out of the grocery cart, pull the battery off, put their sticky fingers all over the buttons. That phone carried on like
nothing had happened.
With the recent purchase of a new house, we have decided that we will not be getting a home-phone installed when we move. Instead, we will both upgrade our very old & outdated phones & get on a plan that gives us the freedom to use the phone more often. I love shopping and at first, was very excited. I started by visiting the websites of all the carriers. I was a bit shocked by the sheer number of phones available. I asked friends for input – Blackberry or iPhone… only to find out that they were split about 50/50. Then I hear about Android and had to ask “what the heck is that!?”
I decided I needed to narrow down my carrier first since they all have different phones and I was already completely confused. Since we have been very happy Virgin Mobile customers since they came to Canada, we decided to stay with them. This was a breakthrough in my shopping experience as I had now narrowed down the search to the
phones that they offer.
Next was choosing a price-point. Since we are going with a contract, there are $0 phones available but typically those are the models that will be going out the door soon. I preferred the idea of getting something a little newer but that of course, comes at a price. This meant iPhone was now out of the race as the price point for newer models was above what I was prepared to pay. So it was down to Blackberry or Android – Android already being a favourite due to a lower price. The plans for both were pretty much the same. I had to look at what I really needed from my
phone and narrowed it down to 2 plans that had what I thought I needed.
I took a trip to the Virgin Mobile kiosk at the mall and asked for some advice. The rep was extremely helpful, she showed me the phones I was interested in, asked me some questions and suggested the plan that would be best for me – which happened to be one of the 2 plans I was considering. I decided on the HTC Incredible S – a brand new phone that had only been released in Canada 5 days earlier. I was drawn to the fact that it was a large touch-screen and had all the features I wanted at a price that I was very comfortable with.
I guess in the end, it turned out good but I will admit that this process took a lot longer than it probably should have. I have a hard time making decisions for sure so that didn’t help. I will definitely post a review very soon, once I’ve had a chance to fully take in all the features.