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Changing My Mobile Phone

Updated on January 23, 2016
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It's Time To Switch!

Like many people, I recently fell in to the trap of not renewing my mobile phone contract at the end of the two years as it was "too much like hard work". However, after putting myself in gear I finally got round to making the switch to get both a shiny new handset and a reduced monthly outgoing, win win!!!

Before you continue I must make clear that this was what I personally did when switching phone contracts in the UK so I'm afraid I don't know if it would work in quite the same way anywhere else.

What I Am Leaving Behind!

If, like me, you are in the UK check out this link to find the phone at Amazon!

My New Phone!

If, like me, you are in the UK check out this link to find the phone at Amazon!

Samsung Galaxy S4 I9505 16GB Unlocked GSM 4G LTE Quad-Core Phone - Black
Samsung Galaxy S4 I9505 16GB Unlocked GSM 4G LTE Quad-Core Phone - Black

So a couple of days after I had placed my order my brand new handset was delivered ready for me to play with. I have always been a bit dubious of companies when they bring out a brand new phone that looks the same as the old one so what is actually different with my new S4.

The first thing you notice is it's size. It may only be 4mm wider and 12mm longer but if looks massive (and the S2 always looked big in comparison to an iPhone!). Oddly it feels thinner even though it is actually the same depth. For some this size would be off putting but I am a tall guy with big pockets so actually it's not a problem for me.What's more, the space for buttons appears at least to be smaller giving a greater area to read emails etc.

The other thing I have noticed is the cleaner/sharper feel to many of the apps and a higher definition screen. All in all it makes it's usability much better.

The other big thing often these days is the quality of the camera. I still take a digital SLR with me if I want to take really good photos but with a young son and baby number two on the way, a good quality camera is essential. This phone takes the S2's good 8MP camera and upgrades to 12MP. More importantly though is an increase in the internal memory not only to cope with the higher resolution pictures but also to store more of them (very vital as old phone was at limit!)

 

It's Time To Swap!

As much as I loved my Galaxy S2, it was starting to show it's age, occasionally running slowly due to the number of photos and apps I'd installed. Couple that with the fact that my contract ran out about 6mths ago, it was worth upgrading if nothing else. I had a good idea that I wanted to stick within the Samsung Galaxy series so looked to see what options I had to upgrade with my current provider.

However, before I could make a good decision, was I even on the best contract? To check this out I logged on to www.billmonitor.com, a great website a friend introduced to me a couple of years ago. You give them your network login details and the website analyses your past 3 months of bills to see what your actual usage is. Straight away I could see that I was paying for many more minutes, texts and data than I was paying for, money was just going down the drain!

The next step is they show you some of the best deals that you can get with your usage and roughly how much you would save every month. Obviously if I went for a much more basic handset then I would have saved a fortune but I knew I wanted the S4 so having applied filters I saw that I could still save money on my monthly contract and get the handset for free.

What's The Deal?

Having used www.billmonitor.com to find what deals I could have, I finally settled on one offered through Dial-A-Phone which would allow me to stick with my current network provider. It sounded perfect as not only would I get the handset I wanted, I'd also reduce my monthly payments and they would provide cashback every 5 months. Bonus!!

I could have bought there are then but, always looking out for more of a bargain, I checked to see if I could use Dial-A-Phone through my favourite cash-back website, Quidco. The good news was they were, an extra £50 in cash-back, it was almost as if they were paying me to have the phone and I'd have the handset within a couple of days.

UPDATE: On 16th September, Phones4U (the parent company of Dial-A-Phone) went in to administration. As such it is now up in the air whether or not the remaining three cashbacks I am owed will be paid out and if they are, will they be in full. I have been fortunate as I wasn't reliant on this cashback to make it a good deal but I would say if you are comparing deals, DO NOT make a decision based solely on cashback as it is not guaranteed.

What Do You Mean I Can't Keep My Number??

Surely Life Should Be Easier Than This!

For many of us our mobile phones are a bit of an extension of our being. Everyone has your number from friends and family, to work colleagues, even through to your doctor and local businesses. Therefore when switching your phone, keeping your number is key.

I knew that if I had simply upgrdaed with my current supplier this wouldn't have been a problem, and I also knew that if I was moving to another company, I could "Port" my number over via a PAC code. This all sounded simple enough so the day after I had placed the order, I phoned my phone company to request a PAC code. As I was explaining why I was leaving a massive snag was thrown up.

"You do realise that because you are staying with Orange but buying the contract through a third party you won't be able to transfer the number via a PAC code"

What?!?!?!?!?

Surely sticking with the same provider should have been easy but having searched online (and with respect to Orange it appears not just to be them!) this seems to be the case. Now I had a dilemma, I wanted the phone but really wanted the number.My best friend tried to sell me on the benefits of switching numbers as he had done it about a year ago and had been able to purge a lot of those people he didn't want to contact him but I was adamant I still wanted to keep the number so set out to find out how I could. The solution I found and did myself is the one below:

  • Firstly get hold of a free, Pay-As-You-Go (PAYG) Sim card from a separate provider. You can usually pick these up somewhere like a shop or in my case, an airport.
  • Phone your current provider to get a PAC code.
  • Stick the free SIM card in a different handset and in most cases top it up. I was in two minds at first if I wanted to "waste" £10 topping up the SIM but given the cashback I am getting at various points, in the end I decided to look upon it as less cashback than a charge to keep my number
  • Phone the free SIM company and ask to port in your phone number and give them your PAC code
  • Depending on the company this will take a day or two, in the meantime continue to use old contract
  • Once the number is switched, leave it a day and use the credit on the free SIM as you will eventually lose this otherwise
  • Phone up the free SIM company again, this time saying you want to leave and get a new PAC code
  • Phone up your actual contract provider (the one you just left as you are technically staying with them) and say you want to port your number in on the new handset which will have come with a brand new SIM
  • Leave it a day or two more and you will finally have your old number on your new phone!

Finally, 6 days after my new handset had arrived I was ready to go. At this stage I imported all of my contacts etc. from my PC as I hadn't dared earlier in case at any stage the above process went wrong. It does sound like a hassle (and is!) but I have yet to hear of anyone who knows of a better way. If you do please leave a comment to help others out!

Now I am just getting used to the handset and hopefully, as a result of this job will save a bit every month that I can spend on the better things in life!

Thanks for reading this hub. If you have had similar issues or have other tips on the best way to switch mobile contracts then please leave them for others to check out!

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    • asereht1970 profile image

      asereht1970 3 years ago

      I also got a brand new Samsung S4 at a discounted price for being a loyal postpaid subscriber of a telecom company. This is the 3rd handset that the company has given me.

    • BodyHairRemoval profile image

      BodyHairRemoval 3 years ago

      I've not been happy with my iPhone, I've thought about making the switch.

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