Do you really need the latest smartphone?

It seems as if the Samsung Galaxy S4 was released just the other day, and now the S5 has launched and been around for a few months as well. Reading through reviews of the S5, it is actually quite difficult to work out exactly what has been improved since the S4. Yes, the S5 does have a fingerprint and heart-rate scanner, it is slightly more energy efficient, and it is slightly easier to use in bright sunlight. Also, the S5 is slightly more user friendly, and of course it has a slightly better processor. So is it worth paying nearly twice as much to get the S5 rather than the S4? Short answer: No.

The reality is that even the Samsung Galaxy S3 can probably do everything you need in a modern smartphone. It has Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity, a user-friendly interface, plenty of storage space for photos and other media, and loads of pointless gimmicks to keep you occupied. The processor in the S3 is so powerful that if you were to use it in a laptop, you could easily run a modern operating system, use Microsoft Office, watch movies, and do pretty much everything a normal computer can do, perhaps with the exception of playing some of the latest mainstream video games.

It does beg the question as to why you would spend so much money on buying the latest smartphone, whether it be Samsung or one of the other brands. Despite what the salesperson might tell you, you really don’t need a quad-core processor to read emails, watch videos, and play Candy Crush. That is not to say that the latest smartphones won’t hold legitimate value for some people, but for the average buyer it will make almost no difference whether you take the latest model or the previous one, except for in your bank account. In terms of saving money, there are certain areas in one’s personal finances where it is very difficult to cut back on expenditure, whilst in other areas it becomes a no-brainer. Mobile phones falls into the latter category.

Do yourself a favour, when the time comes to upgrade, do some research. Ask yourself what you really need, what you will really use, and whether buying the latest most expensive phone will really impact your life in a significant way.

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