If you're looking to buy an iPhone, you might find yourself faced with hundreds of different contracts to choose from, often making it difficult to decide which iPhone contract is best for you. Here, we bring you advice on how to find the best contract for iPhone, so you can decide which iPhone contract is best for you.
There are several factors to consider when buying an iPhone. The first is whether, rather than committing to a contract, you would rather splash your cash up-front to buy an unlocked SIM-free iPhone from Apple or Amazon. To use it, you'll still need to get yourself a SIM card, whether it is a pay monthly or pay as you go SIM, but you won't necessarily be committed to the contract for 18 months or 24 months.
If you're hoping to buy an unlocked iPhone, our best place to buy an iPhone story could help.
However, if you're hoping to get yourself a contract deal, it can be slightly more complicated to decide.
First, you'll need to think about which iPhone model you want to buy. At present, you can buy an 8GB or 16GB version of the iPhone 4, 16GB or 32GB iPhone 4S, or the 16GB, 32GB, 64GB model of the iPhone 5.
It's more than likely that the older the device and the less capacity it has, the cheaper your contract is going to be, so if you'd like to save money it's worth considering whether you really need the latest model or that extra space.
Here, though, we're focussing on iPhone 5 contracts for each of the three capacities.
Hold that thought: is a new iPhone on its way?
It's also worth noting that Apple is expected to launch a new iPhone, likely to be the iPhone 5S, next month, so you might be wise to wait until it is unveiled before buying a new iPhone or getting a new iPhone contract. This will then allow you to decide whether you'd prefer to get your hands on the latest model, or, if not, is likely to reduce the cost of the older iPhone model.
Having said that, there is a risk that Apple will decide to stop selling its older iPhones to make way for a rumoured low-cost iPhone.
What's the best iPhone contract for me?
If you've read the above and are still sure that you want to get yourself an iPhone 5 on a contract before Apple's new iPhone is launched, then read on for further advice.
Now that you've determined which iPhone you want to buy, you can start choosing the contract.
If you've already got a phone with a particular carrier, you might be eligible to upgrade with them and save some money. Alternatively, your loyalty to that carrier could enable you to secure a better iPhone 5 deal.
However, this is not always the case, so it's worth knowing the market before you give them a call to make sure you're in a position to say that you'll be able to find a cheaper deal elsewhere, or determine that their offer is the best available.
Should I get a 4G contract for my iPhone?
Finally, not every carrier supports 4G LTE, which could help sway your decision. Plus, depending on where you live, you might not be able to benefit from the speedier 4G LTE anyway.
EE already offers 4G services, but some other carriers are about to launch their 4G services too.
However, the iPhone 5 supports three 4G bands in the UK: 2100MHz, 1800MHz (which is the band EE uses) and 850MHz. This means, when Three, O2 and Vodafone launch their 4G services, the iPhone 5 won't actually benefit from them, because they'll be using the 800MHz frequency.
The iPhone 5S could change this, though, but for those who already own an iPhone 5, EE is your only 4G option for now.
On the following pages you'll find our pick of the best contracts for each iPhone 5 model, depending on your requirements. Skip to the one that suits you best to find out what we think are the best contracts around at the moment that will fit your needs.