If you're in the market for a new phone you may be wondering whether now is a good time to buy. Is a new iPhone coming out soon? Will the next model be better? In this article, we answer all of your questions about when you should buy a new iPhone, and do our best to put your mind at rest.
How long is it since the last iPhone launched?
It's been (at time of writing) 10 months since Apple unveiled new iPhone hardware.
The iPhone 8, 8 Plus and X were announced in September 2017; the 8 and 8 Plus went on sale the same month, while the X was delayed until November. (Apple did release a PRODUCT(RED) version of the 8 and 8 Plus on 10 April 2018, but this was just a new paint job on existing hardware.)
How frequent are iPhone updates?
Apple usually waits one year before introducing a new iPhone model. It has become an Apple tradition to hold an event in September at which new phones are demonstrated, and then put them on sale a couple of weeks later.
(In 2016 Apple broke with tradition and introduced a new iPhone in March. There was, however, no new iPhone SE in March 2017 or March of 2018, suggesting that the company is returning to the September update schedule.)
When will Apple update the iPhone?
We expect a new iPhone to arrive in September of 2018. You can find out everything we know so far about the next iPhone here.
You can also find out when to expect the next Apple event.
When is the best time to buy an iPhone?
The best time to buy an iPhone isn't necessarily when a new model launches - unless you're desperate to have the very latest hardware. You might be happy to wait a month or two after the launch and wait for supply to catch up with demand, and for any problems with the new phones to be identified and (hopefully) fixed.
It's easier to say when the worst time to buy a new iPhone is - that is without a doubt in the months leading up to September. Don't buy an iPhone in August, and probably not in July either.
What if i want to buy an older model?
You may be thinking that since you just want a new phone and aren't too bothered about the latest iPhone model, why not buy a new iPhone now?
It is our experience that after the event the prices of the current-generation iPhones will drop. And if you're really not bothered about specs, you might be able to pick up an even older iPhone that Apple has discontinued as mobile phone companies discount those models to clear stock.
Another tip: buy your iPhone in Apple's Black Friday sales at the end of November. Apple itself won't give discounts, but will offer an additional gift card. Other retailers will offer discounts on iPhones and iPhone contracts.
We can't be sure that Apple will participate again, but ahead of this year's sale you can take a look at our Black Friday deals hub where we'll be covering the best Black Friday iPhone deals, iPad deals, MacBook deals and more.
Is now a good time to buy a new iPhone?
It's not a terrible time to buy an iPhone - that would be the second half of August - but it's probably not ideal to be buying in mid-July.
There will almost certainly be new models in two months (as of time of writing). At that point we'll get upgraded hardware, additional features and perhaps the substantial redesign we've been waiting for; and even if you can't afford the brand-new hardware, there should also be price cuts on older models, and a slew of people offering good second-hand deals.
The question, then, is this: how urgently do you need a new iPhone? If you need it now, go for it - but accept that it will be superseded in September. But if you can wait two months, we would recommend that you do.