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Fancy features – at what cost?

Nearly 60% of users not aware of all functions that exist on a mobile phone

Smartphones have evolved so much in recent years that the latest handsets are not necessarily needed in order to take advantage of the most popular features and functions. So, it’s worth thinking about whether forking out for an iPhone 6 or 6s is worth it. It could be that an iPhone 5c, or an even older model, would meet your needs and save you money.

Despite being lured in by the latest advances in technology, the average Brit uses just a third of the smartphone features available, according to the results of a recent Talkmobile survey.

Somewhat surprisingly, the most ‘innovative’ smartphone features, such as Voice Activation (i.e. Siri), Mobile Payment (Apple Pay, Google Wallet) and Video Calling, are some of the most underused in modern-day phones.

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Headline findings from the smartphone survey included:

  • Text messaging and phone calls remain the most popular reasons for using a smartphone, despite a surprising 126 people claiming they have never used their mobile to make a call
  • Based on a list of 40 built-in functions, only 35% are being used regularly. With a new iPhone 6s 64GB model costing around £44 per month on a 24 month contract , there are some potentially huge savings to be had by opting for an iPhone 4s for £17.50 per month, or an iPhone 5 for £30 per month on an equivalent price plan
  • Despite advances in technology, most of the newer apps and functionality can be accessed via older smartphone models – including the Apple iPhone

Looking at the way we use our smartphones it’s clear to see that the innovative features found on handsets like the iPhone 6 (e.g. Apple Pay, Siri and Health) are yet to have an impact on our daily lives. This suggests many of us could easily get by on handsets that cost less than £20 a month.

Most popular reasons for using a smartphone:

  1. Sending texts (81%)
  2. Making calls (76%)
  3. Taking photos (70%)
  4. Surfing the internet (57%)
  5. As an alarm clock (50%)
The following handsets cover all those uses (and many more), so why not give them a try?:
  1. Apple iPhone 4s (from £15 per month)
  2. Huawei P8 (from £20 per month)
  3. Nokia Lumia 630 (from £7 per month)
  4. HTC One M8s (from £25 per month)
  5. Samsung Galaxy S4 (from £20 per month)

Over the coming weeks, Talkmobile will provide a series of guides aimed at getting the most out of your smartphone, starting with our introductions to the Huawei P8, and the iPhone 5.

Notes: The study was conducted across 2,000 smartphone users in the UK, via OnePoll.

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