Every year better and faster smartphones and tablets are released left and right. It’s almost too easy to sell your existing gadget and buy a new one.
Sure, it’s always exciting to have the latest gadgets. But there are few things you need to consider before letting go of your hard-earned cash or swiping your credit card.
1. Don’t buy first generation gadgets.
Sometimes it’s tempting to buy first generation gadgets. An entirely new gadget promises an exciting tech adventure. Like recently, Google released Google Glass to a few selected developers. It’s totally cool and all, but it costs a whopping $1500 to be one of the first people on earth to use it. In the next few years, the price will surely be more reasonable.
Of course, this is not just limited to futuristic computer glasses. This applies to practically all gadgets. The first generation tablets like the iPad 1 cost a lot when it first came out. But as we now know, prices have come down and a new and improved iPads have come out since then.
2. Don’t buy gadgets right after its release.
If you love gadgets like me, waiting for the latest release of the iPad or an iPhone is very exciting. There are always rumors going around about its specs and features. And knowing these details make you long for a new gadget with its faster processor and other bells and whistles.
It’s okay to be excited, but your excitement shouldn’t include actually buying the newly released gadget. For one thing, it’s super expensive! In addition, its old model usually gets a mark down.
Recently, the Samsung Galaxy S4 has been released. With its quad core processor and mouthwateringly gorgeous super AMO LED screen, it’s tempting to swipe your credit card or empty your savings account. But with its release, S3’s price has also dropped. Now, it only costs around P18000 in Greenhills. It was originally almost P30000 when it was first released.
As they say, good things come to those who wait. So, the same is true when buying mobile gadgets. 🙂
3. Don’t limit yourself with authorized sellers.
It’s normal to be cautious when buying gadgets. In fact, it’s highly recommended to be cautious. But it’s also important to consider other options when you’re buying a new smartphone, tablet, or netbook.You probably would turn to official and authorized stores in malls like Samsung, Octagon, Power Mac. These are all trusted stores, but they’re not the only ones selling the goods. For example, Greenhills has a lot of gadget stores that can offer the same gadgets at a lower price.
There are many outlets that you can explore when buying gadgets.
- Tipid PC
- >Game Extreme
- >Game One Gadget
- >Mr. Dynamic Telecom
4. Don’t forget to ask about warranty.
Although it’s good to check out other stores, it’s still important to double check policies related to warranties. Asking the policies related to warranty is crucial when buying gadgets. Factory defects and other mishaps don’t happen very often, but you should still take the time in understanding your options just in case something happens.
You have to keep in mind that warranty policies differ depending on the company and the retailer.
For example, Apple doesn’t really require a receipt when you bring your iDevice at their store as long as it’s still within warranty. This is one of the reasons why I love buying gadgets from Apple. They make the process easy for the customers.
I’ve brought several gadgets to Power Mac that is within warranty, and they were all properly serviced. My sister’s iPod nano was even replaced with a new or possibly refurbished unit.
Side Note: The warranty for iPhones works differently. Apple in the Philippines might not cover iPhones bought from unauthorized sellers.
Other companies, on the other hand, work quite differently. For example, when buying an S3 in Greenhills, there are two types of warranty: warranty directly from Samsung and warranty from the store.
S3’s that have warranty directly from Samsung are a bit more expensive. Usually, they’re about P30000-P5000 more. Now, there are stores in Greenhills that sell S3’s that don’t have warranties from Samsung. This means that when the unit is faulty, you’ll have to bring the phone to the store for repair and not to Samsung.
When my boyfriend bought his S3 last January, he got it for P21000. This does not come with Samsung warranty. However, it has a one-year warranty from the store where we bought it from.
So, the bottom line is, you need to ask very specific questions when buying gadgets. Some of the questions you need to ask are:
- How long does the warranty last?
- What is your policy on replacements?
- Which store locations accept repairs and other services?
5. Don’t pay using straight card.
Swiping your precious credit card when buying a new gadget is as easy as flicking your finger. But there are actually a few downsides when you pay using straight card. For starters, retailers will add 5 to 6% to the price of the gadget. This money goes to the bank though—not the retailer.
So, if the iPod touch 5th gen costs P12000, you’ll get charged an extra P600 or P720. This amount can be spent on a decent case for your new gadget. Not only that, since this mode of payment is not an installment, the entire amount will be charged on your credit card right off the bat. This leaves you little room for your credit limit. If you don’t pay your entire balance in full, you’ll also get charged with interest.
So, what’s the best option then?
Well, you got it! It’s always better to pay in cash.
But you might say I don’t have enough cash to buy the S3 or the iPhone!
The good news is that there are other payment options that you might consider:
If you don’t have enough cash and want to use your credit, one option is to split the payment. You can pay half of the amount using straight card, while you pay the other half with cash.
Going back to our example earlier, you’ll charge the P6000 to your card and you’ll pay the other P6000 in cash. Paying this way allows you to take advantage of your credit card without maxing out your credit limit. At the same time, your savings account won’t take a huge hit.
Another combination is to have the P6000 under zero percent installment for 6 or 12 months. This is a lot more manageable compared to charging the whole thing to your card. You can also pay for the other half in cash.
If you really don’t have any extra cash to blow off in a new gadget but are confident enough to pay the monthly installment, your best bet is to take advantage of the zero percent installment.
Things to keep in mind when taking monthly installments:
The total price of the gadget will be taken from your credit limit, but it won’t get charged right off the bat. So, if you have a credit limit of P30000, and the iPod Touch is P12000, you’ll have P18000 left (assuming that you don’t have any previous balance).
Now, if you choose the 12-month installment, then you can expect a P1000 charge on your statement every cutoff.
6. Don’t throw away your receipt.
I know this is pretty basic, but most of the time, it’s easy to misplace the receipt. So, make sure to store the receipt in a safe place. Your wallet can be a pretty safe place. But sometimes wallets can get stolen or misplaced as well.
So, you probably want to have an envelope at home where you can keep all your gadget receipts.
7. Don’t forget to buy protection.
After spending a huge chunk of your money to a new and shiny gadget, you can get a bit stingy when it comes to buying protective cases and screen protectors. But buying the right case is just as important as buying your gadget.
Take the time to shop for the best case, pouch, and screen protectors. As much as possible, you should let the professionals place the screen protectors. Doing it perfectly takes a lot of practice, so it’s best if you leave it to the experts.
Cases also come in all sorts and shapes. Getting original cases versus the generic ones is up to you. As long as the case fits perfectly and feels safe, then you should give it a go.
With all the options available when it comes to buying gadgets, it’s best to take your time and consider the best option. With patience, research, and a bit of resourcesfulness, you can surely get more bang for the buck.
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