There's nothing quite like getting a brand-new phone—you get the shiny screen, flashy features, and fresh-start feeling. But paying full price can dampen all that excitement, and figuring out when to get the best deal can be tough. Between product release cycles, seasonal promotions, and your own personal needs, when is the best time to buy a new phone?
During the preorder period
To attract customers, retailers typically offer discounts or bonus gifts during the preorder period. Some offer a flat discount, while others give you free items with your order, like gift cards, streaming subscriptions (for a set period of time), and even earbuds. For the best deal for you, be sure to shop around.
Up to one month before a new model comes out
If you're cool with buying the most recent version of a phone (instead of the brand new one), then aim to buy about a month before the new model comes out. That's when retailers start lowering their prices—sometimes by hundreds of dollars—on the soon-to-be-last-generation phone. Discounts may vary depending on the seller, so compare prices across retailers, Amazon™, and other sites. Keep in mind that these discounts often continue through the launch date of the new phone, though inventory can sell out quickly.
During Black Friday
If you've ever wondered, “when do cell phones go on sale?" remember annual holidays and events. Every year on the day after Thanksgiving, retailers unveil their best sales and deepest discounts on Black Friday. This is especially true for electronics, including phones. For your safety and sanity, shop online to avoid crowds. Some stores may start offering Black Friday deals a few weeks early, so start your research early. And if you miss a sale, look for it on Cyber Monday, which is a major online shopping event held the first Monday after Thanksgiving.
During Prime Day
In mid-July, Amazon hosts Prime Day, its biggest deal event of the year, packed with discounts on top brands and lesser-known ones from small businesses, including electronics, toys, fashion, and more. This is a great time to buy a phone. If you're already a Prime member, you automatically have access to Prime Day, and if you're not, you can sign up for a free trial to access the deals without committing to the membership.
After Boxing Day
The day after Christmas (December 26) is called Boxing Day, and it's another annual day for sales on phones and other electronics, especially in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand. Even if you live in other countries, keep an eye out for post-Christmas deals on phones around this time.
Advice on when to buy a specific model
Here's some specific advice on when to buy certain phones.
When is the best time to buy an iPhone?
Over the last few years, Apple® has released its new iPhone® in September. If you care about new features, this is the time to buy. But keep in mind, the latest iPhone models are also the priciest. For more cost-conscious buyers, wait until after the latest phone comes out—older models, like the iPhone 13, will be available at a lower price.
Another factor to consider: If you're committed to getting a brand-new iPhone, buy it on launch day from AT&T®, T-Mobile®, or Verizon®. The three big wireless carriers often offer deals around this time, potentially saving you hundreds of dollars.
When is the best time to buy Samsung S Phones?
Samsung® typically releases its new Galaxy S phones in February. Trade-in deals are the best way to save, so if you're willing to part with your current device, you can potentially save hundreds of dollars on a new phone. Alternatively, wait a few months until summertime and look for discounts that don't require a trade-in.
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