Does anyone remember the good old days when those who chose to take a mobile contract were able to change their handsets every 12 months?
It wasn’t long before 18 month contracts became the industry standard, a change which was met by a frown, and then of course 24 month contracts followed. Just yesterday, Gears spotted some 30 month iPhone X deals at Tesco Mobile.
Of course as handsets have evolved and, at the top end, become more powerful and than the average supercomputer, their cost has rocketed. Now we’re at the point where Virgin Mobile have started offering 36 month contracts in order to make the devices affordable to the mass market.
So how do these longer contracts terms relate to pricing? Let’s look at the pricing for the latest Apple handsets…
|Device||Storage||Mins||Texts||Data||Upfront Cost||Monthly Cost||Total Cost of Ownership|
|iphone 8||64 GB||300||Unlimited||1.2 GB||£0||£29||£1,044|
|iphone 8||64 GB||1500||Unlimited||8GB||£0||£32||£1,152|
|iphone 8||64 GB||5000||Unlimited||40GB||£0||£38||£1,368|
|iPhone 8 plus||64 GB||300||Unlimited||1.2GB||£0||£33||£1,188|
|iPhone 8 plus||64 GB||1500||Unlimited||5GB||£0||£36||£1,296|
|iPhone 8 plus||64 GB||5000||Unlimited||40GB||£0||£42||£1,512|
|iPhone X||64 GB||300||Unlimited||1.2GB||£0||£37||£1,332|
|iPhone X||64 GB||1500||Unlimited||5GB||£0||£40||£1,440|
|iPhone X||64 GB||5000||Unlimited||40GB||£0||£46||£1,656|
But do you end up paying more by paying over a longer term?
The total cost of ownership for an iPhone X (with unlimited mins and texts with 15GB of data) on a 24 Month Contract with EE is £1,832 (4GEE Max Plan). So you’re clearly not getting ripped off with these 36 month contracts from Virgin.
If you want a high end handset and happy to keep it for 3 years then these plans really do open up the market for those who would normally be excluded.