Running out of battery on your phone is exceptionally annoying on so many levels. Only a few years ago we didn’t need mobile phones at all and now when the battery dies we feel lost! Unfortunately, battery life is not a precise science – so be wary when manufacturers say that their batteries will last a certain length of time. Those timings are often done under lab conditions and assume that you use the phone in a certain way. This usually doesn’t match the real word usage of having so many people to catch up with on messenger apps, whilst uploading your snaps to Instagram, whilst listening to the Spotify list your friend made, while you are out shopping and comparing prices!
If you play a lot of games, watch box sets back to back or video chat with friends for hours don’t expect to stay unplugged that long. All that said – some smartphones are better than others, so our Product Chooser will match you with phones that can handle more for longer.
Newer models are improving battery capability all the time – but often this is countered by the devices getting bigger and more powerful and therefore draining the battery more. If battery life is your number one priority and you can compromise on how you use it then a newer model with a small to medium screen that has a low performance and low graphics capability will probably suit you best. If you want a more powerful phone for streaming videos, playing games and doing lots at once then a bigger phone - which usually have a bigger battery – will be best. You will just need to moderate how often you use it.
There are two other big decisions to make when selecting a smartphone and they both come down to personal preference really.
Firstly the operating system – Android or iOS? Most apps are designed to work on either system. Let’s face it some people get a little bit obsessed about being either Apple or Android, but the reality is that they are all pretty good these days. If you are used to one system already we suggest you stick to it. That way you don’t have to spend time re-learning new settings and you can transfer any apps you have already paid for to your new phone. If you don’t have a preference toss a coin! Seriously, you can’t really make a bad decision here.
Secondly, how are you going to pay for the phone? If you can afford to buy one up front you can have a simpler SIM only contract. If you want to spread the payments, get a monthly contract. But remember whichever route you choose – all those apps will suck up your data allowance. So, if you are going to be wanting access to all your apps while you’re out and about, you will need a decent data allowance or be permanently in search of free WiFi… which isn’t always convenient - especially if your battery is dying!