Smartphone on a Budget
Smartphones can be an expensive investment and the monthly bill can be painful, but with a few tips and tricks, you can reduce the cost of owning and using your phone. Though the service costs and taxes will always be a part of owning a smartphone, there are a few things you can do to gain a little control over that monthly expense. Below are just a few tips and tricks to get your savings started.
Buy the Insurance
If your service carrier offers insurance on your device, purchase it. Insure your investment because cell phones are expensive and replacing one after damage or loss can be detrimental to your finances, so unless you have a back-up it’s best to pay the minimal cost to insure your device.
Understand your Bill
Next time your cell phone bill arrives, sit down and look at it. If you have any questions on what it is you are paying for, contact your service company. Are you paying extra for features you don’t even use? This is a good time to look over the details of your plan.
When possible, utilize wi-fi to access your apps and programs. This cuts back on data usage extensively and could even help you lower your need for data overall. Perhaps with the help of wi-fi, you don’t necessarily need an unlimited plan and can suffice with a smaller, cheaper plan that costs less. Also, social media, pictures and video downloads tend to use the most data. Browsing and downloading with Wi-Fi is a cheaper alternative.
Data Used vs. Data paid for- set limit reminders
Are you paying for more data than you use, or are your overage costs beyond what a larger monthly plan would be if you switched? Usually, your bill or the past three bills should help you to decide if you are on the right data plan for your needs. Most plans allow you set limit reminders or will automatically cut you off when your limit is reached so you don’t incur overages. Adjusting your data plan could equal significant savings. Only pay for what you’re using, and you’ll save!
Most smartphone apps run on data in the background, updating info and location every few minutes using your data plan unless you’re on wi-fi as discussed above. If you are not checking social media or maps apps regularly, turn off them off. This can be done by going into your data settings. Turning off unnecessary data to apps that are not in use and only turning data for them on when needed will help cut back on cost.
Maps and Streaming Offline
Downloading information such as directions, music, and videos before heading out of the house is another great way to save on data costs. These programs require a lot of data to run. Need a map to get to where you want to go? Look it up at home utilizing your wi-fi then save it to your phone to access without data later. Do the same with music and videos and you’ll see the pennies add up.
There are several other steps and tips you can research so that owning a smartphone isn’t breaking your bank. Check with your service provider if you’re still feeling strapped when the bill arrives, perhaps there is a discount or other advice that could also help to save you money.