The new iPhones are here! The new iPhones are here! Shiny! Fancy! Want want want!
Hold on, there, tiger. It’s easy to get sucked up in Tim Cook‘s Hype Machine (TM) — “This is the best iPhone we’ve ever made” — but there are plenty of reasons you might want to hold onto the iPhone you already have. In fact, I can think of seven:
1. New phone, new problems
Although Apple undoubtedly runs all kinds of tests on new features likeand , there are bound to be issues. For example, can facial recognition really work well in low-light environments? Do you have to abandon your case — or — to use a wireless charger? (Answer to the latter question: Yes. No more handles, rings or pop-out grips. The one possible exception is the .)
Heck, remember? Let the millions of early adopters shake out the problems, then give Apple time to correct them.
2. Headphone jack!
With the iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, Apple has “bravely” continued to not include a headphone jack. If you’re not ready to make the switch to Bluetooth headphones, credit-card swipers and the like, that’s another big reason to stick with your iPhone 6 ($364.99 at Amazon Marketplace) or earlier.
Granted, Apple does supply an adapter for your wired headphones, and you can always switch to. But, bottom line, even if you want a headphone jack, you can no longer have it.
3. Faster processors mean nothing
As always, Apple crowed about its latest processor, in this case the A11 Bionic. It’s 25 percent faster at this, 70 percent faster at that, yada-yada.
How much faster do we need phones to get? I’ve had an iPhone 6s Plus ($749.95 at Amazon Marketplace) for about two years, and not once have I said, “This sure is slow!” Rather, everything happens almost instantly: Touch ID unlocking, camera loading, video streaming. I occasionally have to wait a few seconds for graphics-intensive games to start, but I don’t play that many games anyway.
I’m sure there’s a small segment of users who might be able to take advantage of the faster chip, especially those looking to tinker with. For most of us, however, a faster processor is hardly a reason to upgrade — because our iPhones are already plenty fast.
4. You can make your old phone feel like new
Assuming there’s nothing actually wrong with your current iPhone, don’t let simple boredom drive you to spend money on a shiny new one.
Instead, take steps to. For example, if your big complaint is with ever-decreasing battery life, you can get a new battery installed for as little as $50. A new case can add a splash of style or color. And once you’ve installed , you’ll enjoy some fresh UI updates and a host of new and improved features — all of which can contribute to making your trusty old iPhone feel a bit like a spiffy new one.
5. You can have wireless charging right now
Wireless charging has finally arrived! (Actually, owners of various Android phones have enjoyed it for some time.) But guess what: You can add this capability to nearly any existing iPhone.
Indeed, various case makers have long offered Qi-compatible charging cases for iPhones, the tradeoff being that they add length (to accommodate the necessary Lightning connector) and bulk.
More recently, however, wafer-thin adapters have arrived to provide a much less obtrusive solution — one that makes for much easier switching to Lightning-cable connectivity when the need arises.
Best of all, they’re very inexpensive; products like the Invitian one shown here sell for as little as $13. To learn more, check out Matt Elliott’s story on.
6. Prices will come down
Historically, every new iPhone brings a price cut on the previous year’s iPhone. And today was no different: Apple cut the iPhone 7 ($826.00 at Amazon Marketplace)‘s starting price to $549 from $649, the iPhone 7 Plus ($785.70 at Amazon Marketplace) to $669 from $769. See more about the .
Even if you don’t want to wait a full year for just a modest price cut, patience will net you a lower price. For example, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are just a couple months away, and although you might not see any iPhone deals, Apple did offer a $50 gift card last year.
But you should also look to what’s happening in reseller channels. Right now, for example, Daily Steals has a refurbished (but Apple Certified) iPhone 6s ($649.95 at Amazon Marketplace) for $360. Sure, it’s two generations behind, but still a very capable phone — and it’s a good bet we’ll see similar deals on the iPhone 7 down the road.
How far down the road? Give it six months to a year for maximum savings.
7. Duh: It’s paid for
Arguably the best reason of all to keep your current iPhone: You already own it.
Well, probably. Some folks are fine with a monthly lease payment, especially if it means getting an upgrade every year. But I’m a big believer in— almost always a smarter financial move than getting in bed with a Big Four carrier and never-ending lease payments.
Even if you pay $50-75 for a new battery and throw in some new accessories, you’re way better off than buying a whole new phone.
Agree? Disagree? You know what to do. (Er, leave a comment.)
: iPhone X, Apple TV 4K and more.
Apple Sept. 12 iPhone event live coverage: Read about the event on CNET’s live blog.
iPhone X, iPhone 8: Everything we know about Apple’s new iPhones.