Should I wait for Black Friday to buy a new phone?

You know what time of year it is. The sales are coming, and that may mean it's one of the best times of year to upgrade your smartphone.

Even if you don't want the latest and flashiest handset, the launch of new phones means the price of older devices have fallen too.

We've seen most of the new top-end phones launch now… so should you just go ahead and buy or is it worth waiting for Black Friday and Cyber Monday? That big sales period is only a month away, so we're going to give you our best advice below.

How do you plan to buy your phone?

This is one of the most important decisions when purchasing your new device. Do you plan to buy it outright and pair with one of our best SIM only deals? If so, the Black Friday period is going to be perfect for you.

A variety of retailers will have phone deals going up throughout the weekend and we expect to see Amazon, Argos, John Lewis and more discount prices on handsets over the weekend and perhaps even a little before then too.

Recent years for the Black Friday period haven't seen such incredible deals for phones on contract in the UK, but retailers are getting more and more savvy around Black Friday.

We'd recommend looking out for deals from places like Carphone Warehouse and the major networks in the week before Black Friday. Be sure to check back on TechRadar from Monday November 19 for the start of the discounts. We have a dedicated Black Friday phone deals page you can bookmark in preparation.

What device are you looking for?

samsung galaxy s9

Samsung’s Galaxy S9 may be discounted over Black Friday 2018

It's unlikely we're going to see the Google Pixel 3 XL, iPhone XR or OnePlus 6T get staggering discounts over Black Friday. These phones will barely be a month old, so it's unlikely we'll see the prices crash down much further than their RRPs.

But if you're looking for a phone like the Samsung Galaxy S9 or Huawei P20 Pro those are slightly older devices that we may see some significant price drops. If the device you're looking for it over six months old, we're much more likely to see discounts.

Last year we saw the Samsung Galaxy S8 at its cheapest ever price yet with it costing £60 upfront but only £26 per month with 4GB of data with O2. That was a must-have deal for anyone looking for a new Samsung phone back in 2017. 

Maybe we'll see a repeat with a similar deal later this year but instead for the S9.

Cheaper phones often get price cuts too. For example, the Moto G5 originally cost £169.99 when it launched in March 2017 but by the time of last year's Black Friday we'd seen it discounted to only £129.95.

What deal do you want?

If you want to save money, you'll be able to do that on Black Friday… but how about some freebies instead?

For example, if you bought a Sony Xperia XZ over Black Friday 2017 from Virgin Mobile you got a free Sony PS4 Slim and a copy of FIFA 2018. That's a pretty tasty bonus.

It may be you want to get some extras alongside your normal phone deal instead of saving money, and if you want that you'll likely have to wait until next month to upgrade your phone.

How long should you wait?

Our best advice here is to do your research around the phone you want to buy, and then decide how much money you want to save. As we've said, not all devices will go on sale over the period but we'd expect to see slightly older devices to get the best discounts.

If you know in your mind exactly how much you'd be willing to spend you can know when to hit the buy button when the big sales period comes around. If you don't see any deals that take your fancy and your current phone is still OK, there's always the Boxing Day sales period too. 

We can't gurantee you'll find the perfect deal over Black Friday for your new smartphone, but we can gurantee we'll have all of the best deals on TechRadar. Be sure to head back when you're shopping later in the year.

Leave a Reply