Best smartphone deals available right now: January 2022


Shopping for a new smartphone? There’s an abundance of high-performance options on the market, with a generous selection to choose from within every price point. In fact, below we’ve rounded up the very best smartphone promotions from Apple, Samsung, Google, OnePlus, and more — all which currently sell for significantly less than the original price. So if you had an ideal smartphone in mind, at least one of these deals should fit right into your budget.

Also: Best smartphones 2022: Weighing in the top choices

Best Apple iPhone deals


Unless you’re willing to pay in full, the best place to buy the latest iPhone for less is at your local carrier store. Whether its Verizon, T-Mobile, or AT&T, there’s always a buy-one-get-one or “free iPhone on us” promotion happening, especially during the holidays. Fortunately, iPhones have also become such a revenue driver for US carriers that a deal can always be had no matter what time of the year. So, here are the best deals on the iPhone 13 and 12 series.

More: Best Apple iPhone deals available right now: January 2022

Best Samsung Galaxy deals


If you’re more in favor of Android’s spin on mobile, then Samsung’s Galaxy lineup may suit your needs. Samsung has been at the forefront of display innovation for some time and remains a leader in foldable technology. Speaking of, Amazon is currently discounting the Z Fold3 by $250, making now the best time to venture into the folding phone world. Also, the just-released Galaxy S21 FE is under a few promotions at Samsung and Best Buy that involve free store credit and accessories.

If you’re willing to wait for the Samsung Galaxy S22 series, you can reserve a preorder at Samsung’s website today and get an extra $50 worth of store credit.

More: Best Samsung phones 2022 | Samsung Galaxy S21 FE review

Best Google Pixel deals


There’s no denying that Google’s Pixel lineup produces industry-leading photography, thanks in part to the company’s AI smarts. Up until 2020, Pixel smartphones have always prioritized an bare-bones Android experience over the shiny glass finishes and quad-camera setups found on competing devices. Last year, Google took to the premium route once again, bringing a renewed focus on high-end smartphones with the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. While the two are fairly new devices and short of any notable deals, the predecessor, Pixel 5, can be yours for just $319 on Amazon. Thanks to the stellar computational photography and Google’s commitment to software updates, the Pixel 5 runs like a champ and for many years to come. 

More: Why I replaced my iPhone with Google’s newest Android phone

Best Motorola Moto g deals


Motorola was once popular for the Razr, a smartphone that lived in the pockets of consumers everywhere, capable of hanging up calls with a flip. While its innovative attempt to bring that flare back in 2020 was a big miss, there’s one thing that Motorola has done right — at least in the US market: budget smartphones. Thanks to its Moto g series, Motorola has managed to carve out a piece of market share in the US, which is mostly dominated by the likes of Apple and Samsung. Right now, you can save more with the latest Moto g smartphones, consisting of the Moto g Stylus for $249 ($50 off), Moto g Power for $199 ($50 off), and the Moto g Fast for $169 ($30 off).

More: Motorola needs to flip back after its flawed brand reboot | Best cheap 5G phones 2022

Common questions about smartphones

When should I upgrade my phone?

Believe it or not, you don’t have to upgrade to that new, shiny phone every year. Modern day smartphones are designed to function for years and years, especially if the manufacturer offers extensive software support.

Still, there are a couple of reasons why you may want to consider upgrading from your current phone:

  • Poor software performance: If you’ve had the displeasure of experiencing app crashes and delayed loading times, then you may have been told to “factory reset the phone”. While that certainly helps with refreshing the internal state of your device, it is only a Band-Aid of a solution and you’ll be hard pressed to face similar usability problems again in the long run.
  • Faulty battery: Nearly every phone in the market runs on lithium-ion batteries, which degrade over time and have the potential to swell if kept in hazardous conditions. If you’re experiencing poor battery life or your phone doesn’t hold its charge well, then that may be your signal to replace the battery or the phone altogether.
  • Hardware defect: Like the battery, if your device suffers from any hardware damage (i.e Cracked screen, unresponsive digitizer, crackling speaker, etc.), then an upgrade may be due.

It never hurts to switch to the best, and as this deal list has shown, you don’t have to pay a fortune to do so.

Should I buy from a carrier or directly from the manufacturer (unlocked)?

Between carrier stores and that of brands, the first question you should ask yourself when deciding where to buy from is “Locked or unlocked?”.

  • An unlocked phone allows you to use the device with different carrier services and without any of the third-party bloatware and contractually agreements. This is important if you plan on switching carriers or travel internationally.
  • A locked phone restricts your mobile data usage to the carrier that you purchased the device from, whether that’s T-Mobile, Verizon, or AT&T. While it sounds less beneficial than buying unlocked, carrier stores are more likely to offer you deals and promotions that make the upgrading cost significantly less. For example, the best iPhone deals available right now are mostly from carriers.

If you do purchase a locked phone from a carrier and end up switching to a different service, don’t fret. Thanks to the “Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act,” US carriers must unlock your phone after you’ve fully paid it off and finished any contracts or agreements.

Which phone should I buy?

There is a plethora of phone brands on the market so you’ll definitely meet a few crossroads during your purchasing journey. To help, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. iOS or Android? These two operating systems make up more than 95% of the market, so picking between the two is your first big choice. iOS, the Apple iPhone’s operating system, is known to be user-friendly, secure, and home to a robust library of quality apps. Android, on the other hand, utilizes Google’s software and AI smarts to produce a more customizable user experience.
  2. Small or large? What do you use your phone for? Browsing social media? Streaming TV shows on the go? Some users prefer smaller devices for its ergonomics and one-handed usability. Larger phones provide more screen real estate for social and multimedia consumption. You can also expect greater battery life with the latter.
  3. Budget? How much are you willing to spend on your next phone? Fortunately, there is a wide selection of capable mobile handsets on the market, so paying less doesn’t always mean you’re getting the worst. Today, you can buy a 5G-ready smartphone for as little as $200.

My best advice for you is to give every phone a try! There’s nothing more helpful than holding and interacting with the phones at your local brick-and-mortar and seeing what satisfies your consumer needs.

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