How we waste money on smartphones
SMARTPHONE users trying to keep up with the latest and fanciest devices could be unnecessarily spending a small fortune just to ensure they have the newest technology.
There's no denying the smartphone sensation is costing Australians big - many are spending plenty to have the newest device and fattest plan.
But telco comparison website WhistleOut's spokeswoman Joseph Hanlon said customers should instead take a deep breath and instead drill down into ways to save on their devices before rushing to update their phone.
Mobile phone number portability has made it easier than ever to switch and there's plenty of carriers outside of the biggest three that offer enticing deals.
"Once you have the new SIM card (with a new provider) in your hand it can take five minutes to switch,'' Mr Hanlon said.
"And considering the price you can pay over two years on a contract the savings can be as much as $1000.
"I've seen number ports from one provider to another that are five minutes or less, your old service will continue to work right up until the changeover occurs and at the point it will cancel your old service, you don't even need to contact that provider."
He said buying a phone outright instead of going on a locked-in contract can result in significant savings.
Whistleout's database shows some of the most competitive smaller providers include Moose Mobile, Jeenee Mobile, Vaya and Amaysim.
More Australians are also ditching their fixed-line services and instead relying solely on a mobile - latest figures by the Australian Communications and Media Authority showed in June 2016 only 68 per cent of adults have a fixed line telephone, compared to 78 per cent five years ago.
Some SIM-only deals have large inclusions and offer customers unlimited calls and texts with 10GB of data around $30 per month.
The nation's peak communications body, the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network's spokesman Luke Sutton, said when looking to get a new phone it can be cheaper to buy the handset outright and sign up to a more cost-effective plan.
"Look at the cost over the life of the contract (usually 12 or 24 months) and compare that cost to buying the phone outright and monthly plan charges,'' he said.
"Consumers may also be able to find a better value deal with a smaller provider and one that doesn't lock them in for a long period."