Technology has advanced at a ridiculously rapid rate over the past few years, much more than was ever anticipated. Whilst this means our lives have been made easier, it also means we can tend to pay more for the latest items.
But, let’s face it, with talks of 4K TVs being ‘as cheap as £1k’ and Swarkovski jewel encrusted fitness trackers, it’s got me thinking about how we’re actually going to afford any of it. I’m starting to think I’m going to have to give up my home and start sleeping in a cardboard box on the street just to get the latest smartphone.
So here’s my rundown of the top 7 ways to get cheap gadgets!
- 1 7 Easy Ways To Get Cheap Gadgets
- 2 SEE MORE: Best Budget Laptops – What To Look For >>
7 Easy Ways To Get Cheap Gadgets
1/ Stay At Least One Season Behind
Don’t just huff and curse the very existence of this new technology you could never afford – you should be thanking it! Because whenever new technology is announced, it means the start of cheap gadgets and electricals from the retailers we love, trying to clear space on their shelves.
Picture from ShinyShiny
I know what you’re thinking; ‘but I want that new shiny flexy phone, and I want it the day it’s released!’. Well, I’m sorry to burst your bubble little grown-up child, but if you can’t afford new releases then you really need to stay a step behind the latest crazes. And if you think that’s just ridiculous, then you might be a bit of a snob…
Companies lower the price of their older models when a new one is released. Take Apple with the recent release of the iPhone X – the price of the 7 and 8 dropped by quite a bit, especially as sales of the X weren’t as great as anticipated. It is a handy was of them boosting sales of their older models, but it worked.
When the Samsung Galaxy S5 was put on the market, I snapped up my S4 at a fraction of the cost. Just because you’re not getting the latest and greatest new technology doesn’t mean you’re not getting something awesome, as long as it’s an upgrade from your current gadgets!
Something about new gadgets, especially for us tech lovers, draws us into wanting something just because it’s been made. That’s a ridiculously bad and expensive habit to get into; you’re not a crow out hunting for shiny things to take back to your nest, so stop cluttering up your home with junk and buying the ‘latest and greatest’ electricals only to realise weeks later that you could’ve gotten something just as good for half the price.
2/ Wait For The Right Time
As strange as it sounds, you’re probably throwing money away by buying your new gadgets on the wrong month. Or even just on the wrong day. After tech events or big new releases, prices of older models decreases, so hang fire for a little while.
Just remember, they’ll be last seasons models. But since this method works for not only laptops phones and wearables but also fridges, washing machines, cars and home appliances, there should be at least one thing on the list you don’t mind having last year’s model of!
3/ Wait For A Budget Model
Of course, all new technology is going to be expensive when it’s released commercially. You can’t see a shiny new DSLR camera and expect to get it within your £200 budget, not from any reputable seller anyway (no, the guy who sells you them from the back of a white van doesn’t count).
Picture from ShinyShiny
But, what about the new technology we know will get cheaper in the future? Take all the wearable tech we have been shown over the years – from smart-watches to fitness trackers, they all seemed to be just a bit above our budgets. That, and the knowledge that the first models are always going to be improved on stopped most of us from getting one.
Now, there are new smartwatches that are incredibly ‘budget-friendly’ option at around £30, and the capability to track your activity, swimming and sleep. Just like the latest FitBit that is over £100. Okay, the more expensive one may be a bit more technologically advanced but is the difference worth the upper price?
Playing the waiting game really does pay off. Give it even more time, and you could probably get this smartwatch even cheaper in future sales on Amazon thanks to all this new technology. Just make sure you get one in the right size for you.
Picture from TechRadar
And er… then there are the things that you can be pretty sure aren’t going to drop in price or have a budget model any time soon. This was the Mercedes Benz F 015 Luxury in Motion, a car that looks about as confusing as its name is. Convinced that self-driving cars are the future, this was Mercedes crack at making a comfortable pod for you to be transported around in rather than an actual vehicle as we usually know them (although you can still drive it!).
No, I’m not expecting you to be about to rush out and buy anything like this for yourself just from this announcement, but this is one of those products that probably won’t have a cheaper alternative released for a few years yet. For one, the legalities of a self-driving car are still a big stepping stone to get across before they become commercially available, and for two they’re just so incredibly new. Give it some time though and we’ll all be in one.
4/ Research, Research, And Research Some More!
Never, ever, buy a new gadget without looking into it first! Just because Apple’s released a new phone doesn’t mean you need it on release day, when it’s at it’s most expensive. And just because you think fitness trackers look pretty cool, that doesn’t mean you should go out today and buy the first one you find.
I don’t want to insult anyone by saying it’s common sense, but… Really, would you buy a car on the spur of the moment? Nope, so don’t do that with your new technology either. You can get cheap gadgets if you find the perfect model for you, and you research where to get it for the cheapest price.
Another trick is to find out how much it’s been in the past, to make sure if you find a ‘sale’ price that it’s actually a good deal. CamelCamelCamel is a great site for checking the price history of Amazon products, and that’ll give you a rough idea of how much the tech you’re after has been sold for in shops too. If you know that the new TV you want was £100 cheaper in the past, it’s probably not the best time to buy it right now. Patience is a virtue. And this all leads on to my next point…
5/ Wait For A New Brand To Make A Budget Version
Ah, how we’ve come along from floppy discs am I right? But if only everything we used had one standard connector – how many times have you gotten something that only takes USB sticks, or micro USB, or lightning connectors? It’s so frustrating, and to be honest one of the major downfalls of new technology is all the wires and connectors we still need to use.
Picture from Gizmodo
The great thing about new technology is that someone always comes along and make a budget version for us. Most people stay away from the cheaper designs, assuming that they’ll be worse to use because of the price or just snubbing them in favour of their favourite brand. Just take a look at all of the Apple Lightning cables on Amazon. The reviews give away which are the best ones, with two of the top-rated being under a tenner. How much is the official Apple lightning cable? Almost twice that, depending on the length of the one you want from the Apple store.
What’s the point of paying that much more for something that works just as well as it’s remake? You just need to keep an eye out for them!
7/ Get A Discount Or Voucher
I don’t think I’ve ever paid full price for a takeaway pizza in my life. And that’s because I always do a quick search online for vouchers before I ever order, and I’ve always found one somewhere. I’m not saying you’ll always find a voucher or discount code for the things you want to buy, what I am saying is that it’s always worth a check. Shops routinely put out vouchers online for things like ‘home appliances’ or ‘student laptops’, and if what you’re after comes under one of those headings you could be saving some pennies.
Just don’t spend hours on this tip. Yes, it’s nice to get a voucher, but if you waste a whole day looking for one is it really worth it?