Okay, the title might be a bit misleading but various mobile phone and carrier services in the US and elsewhere are launching upgrade programs that can literally let you get a new smartphone every year without spending (much) money. For example, this link does that Verizon has already been allowing its customers to get a new smartphone every year by subscribing to an upgrade plan but so far it was only available for iPhone users. In a different blog post I wrote about how Samsung is also introducing its own upgrade program that will allow people to get a new smartphone whenever a new upgrade is launched by the company’s starting with the Samsung Galaxy line of smartphones and tablets.
What is a smartphone yearly upgrade program? First of all, such programs may only be available in the countries where it is easier to purchase a smart phone either with instalments or with the carrier program. For example, in the US it’s easier to get an expensive smartphone if the carrier provides it. In India some carriers are offering smartphones but they are directly selling them instead of giving them as a part of the deal. Reliance was doing that but I’m not sure whether it is still doing it or not. When you have to give an EMI it is easier to subscribe to an upgrade program that allows you to get a new smartphone every year without spending much money.
All you have to do is, pay a little extra. Then, when the new model is introduced, you need to return your existing model that you own and get a new model without having to purchase it. This is a creative way of making money for companies who constantly have to launch new mobile phones and other gadgets.
So Verizon in the US is launching a similar program. It was already selling iPhones like this, now it is also planning to sell Samsung Galaxy S7 and Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge. So if you are producing one of these phones, you can get yourself an Annual Upgrade Program that allows you to get a new smartphone as early as within 30 days activating your existing smartphone provided you have paid at least 50% price of your existing smartphone.
I wouldn’t mind getting a new smartphone model every year but I wouldn’t be crazy about the idea once I settled down with a device. After a while your smartphone becomes a part of your daily existence and you feel like replacing it only if it is unavoidable. I’ve gotten myself a new smartphone only when it’s totally impossible to use the old one. It also depends on your requirement. For example, you would like to use only the latest smartphones in order to capitalize on the camera that comes with it. In that sense, yes, it makes sense to upgrade your smartphone whenever there is an opportunity. If you can do that, there is nothing like getting a new smartphone every year without spending much money.