It’s November and the holiday season is officially here. And if you’re looking for an excuse to splurge on a new phone this year, we’ve got 5 of them. These money-saving apps will help your phone and your phone bill to pay for themselves long before it’s time to upgrade to a new model in 2013.
Buy Your Phone Unlocked
Do you know why wireless carriers offer phones at a steep discount? Because they know they’ll more than make their money back once they have you locked into a 2-year contract completed with throttled data.
If you want to save in the long-run, buy an unlocked phone. Shop at the right place and you’ll find them surprisingly cheap. And once you buy it you’ll be free to choose the carrier with the cheapest plans or opt for pay-as-you-go service so you never pay for minutes and data that you don’t use.
This is a new wireless service provider that pays you to advertise for it. We’ve written about it here. And so far it sounds pretty good. To start, their service plans are $49 per month for unlimited 4G data, text and talk via T-Mobile (via your own unlocked phone or one of theirs).
And for every three people you persuade to join Solavei you get $20 off of your monthly bill for every month that those three people continue to use the service.
The more customers you sign up, the more money you make. If you’re a social media guru, you can even get them to pay you. Their website promises monthly payments up to $20,000 if you can keep 6,000 users to use their service month after month.
They’re new and there’s no telling how long the service will be around so it’s worth a try now. Their Twitter followers seem happy to spread the news. And many of them claim that their monthly bill is now free. So that’s promising. I am not personally affiliated with them but if you have a plan, leave a comment! We’d love to know how your service is going.
Skype (Android, iPhone, BlackBerry, Free)
If you’re not already running the Skype app on your phone you’re paying way too much for your phone bill. When you talk to other Skype users, your calls are free — no matter where in the world you make them from. Calls to landlines and Skype-free cell phones are a tiny fraction of the cost you’ll pay by making them directly through your service provider.
Text Free Unlimited ($5.99)
If you don’t have a plan that offers unlimited texting (or you think you’re paying too much for the privilege) try the Text Free Unlimited app. While the app is running, all of your ingoing and outgoing text messages are free. For people like me who talk more than they text, this can be a great way to cut down on your monthly phone bill and get one of those really cheap plans that charge per text.
Once your phone is done paying for itself it can help you out with other bills. Apps like Coupon Sherpa will pull up available in-store coupons at most national stores. It’s designed for those of us who are too lazy to search for and clip coupons but really should. While you’re out running errands, use your phone to search for stores by name and location and you’ll make sure you always get the lowest prices. Other apps like Yowza!! Mobile Coupons and Coupon Cabin do the same thing.