It is an exciting day when you buy iPhone and start discovering all the things you can do with it. It will become part of your daily activities, and your life will slowly change.
Because the iPhone is going to be with you all the time, it is going to be your companion anywhere you go.
When you are bored, you will find yourself pulling your iPhone and doing something. If you are in a meeting, working, with friends, or studying, you will see yourself pulling your iPhone and running an application to do something.
This is guaranteed to happen!
Since the iPhone is so much a life changer, it is critical to buy the right one that will meet your needs. Whether you are first time iPhone buyer or an upgrader from a previous iPhone, this guide will help you understand the available iPhone options, and who offers them.
Every year Apple drops the price of the previous generation iPhone when a new iPhone comes out. Therefore, there are currently three iPhones available to choose from, iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, and iPhone 4.
The iPhone 5 comes in three sizes, 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB, and comes in white or black. It is a world phone which can be used on CDMA or GSM networks anywhere in the world.
Lastly, you can now buy any iPhone factory unlocked from Apple in the US.
Why buy an iPhone?
The iPhone is a powerful device that can be used for serious work, while it is also a great toy for entertainment.
There are many reasons that puts the iPhone on top of its competition. The easy to use interface, the huge selection of iPhone accessories, and the hundreds of thousands of iPhone applications available in the App Store are some of the reasons why people decide to buy iPhone besides being on an Apple ecosystem.
I found the following reasons to be the most fundamental in your decision to buy an iPhone.
1- The Most Advanced OS
The iPhone currently come with iOS 6 which is the most advanced and easy to use operating system on a smart phone. The iOS is advancing quickly in every release while keeping same simplicity and ease of use.
The iPhone support 34 languages right out of the box including Arabic. You will most probably find your language on the iPhone.
You can reboot the iPhone in any of those 34 languages so the whole iOS will be changed to the selected language. You can also have your iPhone Speak many languages back to you including Arabic.
4- Over 800,000 iPhone Application
When you buy iPhone you will have immediate access to over 800,000 iPhone Applications available from the App Store which is the largest online application store in the globe.
5- Great Music Apps
If you are a musician, you might want to buy iPhone just for this purpose. The fluidity and the multi touch screen with a musical piano or a synthesizer can convert your iPhone into a fully functional sound mixer, sequencer or audio generator. You can create a whole band just using your iPhone.
6- Stability, and Efficiency
The iPhone is the most optimized smart phone. Because Apple design both the hardware and software, you get the best user experience, stability, and battery life.
If you have at least two devices from Apple such as an iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, a Mac, or an Apple TV. Then you will find that it is more efficient for you to buy iPhone to add to your Apple collection.
It is great to buy one iPhone application one time and install it on several iOS devices at no additional charges.
Another great advantage of being in the Apple ecosystem is the compatibility between the Apple devices. Look at AirPlay, iCloud and the Apple TV to learn more.
Where to Buy iPhone
Since almost every carrier in the US now carriers the iPhone, you can easily buy it from the big ones like Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon in addition to the original AT&T option.
You can get an iPhone from any retail Apple store location or from Best Buy, Target, or Walmart. You can also order it online from any of the mentioned places. Of course you might have to buy a 2 year contract from one of the above three carriers or buy an unlocked iPhone from any Apple retail store.
Buy iPhone With a Contract in the US:
Most of the time, when you buy your iPhone, it will be locked to one of the three US carriers, which means only that carrier can be used with your iPhone. If you buy your iPhone from AT&T, then it will run on the GSM network which will have an iPhone SIM card for At&T.
If you buy an iPhone from Sprint or Verizon, then it is a CDMA phone, and therefore, you won't get a SIM card but still your iPhone will be locked to that specific carrier.
It was also possible to get a CDMA iPhone 4 for the Verizon network, but now with the new world iPhone 5, it is both CDMA and GSM capable. Therefore, no matter what network you are on, the iPhone dual antenna will switch to the correct network.
You can buy an iPhone 5 at 16GB with a 2 year contract from any of the carriers for $199, 32GB iPhone 5 for $299, and a 64GB iPhone 5 for $399.
Moreover, you can buy an 16GB iPhone 4S for $99 locked with a 2 year contract. Lastly, an 8GB iPhone 4 is also available for free with a 2 year contract locked to AT&T.
Buying an iPhone
in the US with a contract is probably the best way to go. A GSM iPhone 5, or an iPhone 4S with a contract, can still be used outside of your carrier network but you will pay roaming charges.
You will know when your iPhone switch from one carrier to another by looking at the status bar as shown below. The carrier name will change automatically.
Buy iPhone Unlocked in the US:
If you are a traveler and you plan to use your iPhone in different countries in the world. Then, it is best buy an unlocked iPhone which allows you to freely select any carrier by simply changing the iPhone SIM card.
Of course, it is still possible to use a locked iPhone globally anywhere with any GSM carrier, However, roaming charges will apply to all your phone calls because you are outside of your local network. Buying an iPhone unlocked can save you lots of money by avoiding roaming charges and using local phone charges. You can also use local pre paid SIM cards if you like.
In the US, AT&T and T-Mobile are the only GSM carriers, therefore, buying an iPhone unlocked will allow you to use it with either T-Mobile or AT&T.
There are two different ways you can buy unlocked iPhones. There is factory unlock which is permanent, and is the recommended method, while there is also a user unlock method which is done by software.
Buy an iPhone Factory Unlocked in the US:
Buying an iPhone unlocked from the factory wasn't possible in the US the past.
But now, you can buy iPhone factory unlocked from any Apple retail store, or online.
You will pay the full price from Apple which start at about $800 for iPhone 5.
Many carriers now will unlock your iPhone upon request if you have passed your 2 year contract and your account is in a good standing.
Buy an iPhone and Use Software to Unlock it:
You can't buy a software unlocked iPhone from Apple or any carrier. A user unlocked iPhone is a hacked iPhone, that has a custom firmware installed which unlocks its sim port.
This kind of user or software unlock is not permanent. If you update your iOS, or restore your iPhone for any reason, your iPhone unlock will be lost, and you won't be able to use your phone with your current carrier.