Are There Any Companies to Pay off a New Phone?

Hey guys, just wondering if there are any companies out there where you can get a new phone and pay it off over say 12/24 months, similar to how you would if you were to start a plan with Telstra or Optus. All the plans available are far more expensive then the month to month I am already on. I currently pay $28/ month for 100gb and unlimited calls/text.

I am in a bit of a pickle. I currently have an S9+ 256gb which I came off a plan with 2 months ago. I dropped it for the first time yesterday and broke the screen which means unfortunately I no longer have insurance on it. It's going to cost $360 to fix which is almost the price of another used one so I am considering a new phone but cannot pay upfront.

Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!


  • +3

    The only reason phone companies offer those deals is because they are subsidized by the high cost of the attached plan. If a company like you're imagining exists the monthly cost probably wouldn't be great value as you're essentially just using borrowed credit.

  • +16

    If you don't hav the money to buy a phone upfront, I suggest buying a cheaper phone. Or just repair yours. Taking out a loan for a phone is silly.

  • Not recommended but a low interest credit card would be cheaper than a loan shark

  • +7

    Don't buy something you can't afford. It just creates more problems for you.

  • +3

    To answer your question, yes there is ZipMoney/ZipPay with no interest, pay over 12 months and I believe they have a monthly fee of $5.

    But in saying that, if you need to take out a loan or buy now pay later solution then it’s probably because you shouldn’t be buying an expensive phone.

    Sell yours as is and buy a cheaper Android phone, even if you get $100 for it, then you can buy a brand new Oppo or Nokia for $250.

  • +2

    Shop around for a screen replacement. $360 is crazy considering Samsung will do it for $320 with genuine parts.

  • +1

    Looks like you can't afford to commandeer a flagship phone.

    Don't take a loan to buy a phone. That is foolish move.

  • As people have said, I'd advise against it.

    There are a number of options for phones around the $350-400 mark. Samsung A series, heaps of Xiaomi or Oppo devices, the Google pixel 3A, Motorola etc etc.

  • -1

    Apple do an interest free deal using a Creditline card, although as a Samsung user maybe Apple doesn't appeal. Fee is $5 per month but no interest for up to two years. I bought an iphone 11 for my wife using this method and paid it off in around 6 months. Far better than getting stuck on a plan, many of which are now 3 years for the more expensive phones.

    She was previously on a $60 per month Optus plan for her iphone 8, so moving her to the $25 Aldi plan, which has more data and better coverage anyway, meant effectively $35 per month was being funded by the saving there.

    That said there are perfectly good mid range androids to be had for $400 or less. I've been using a Huawei Nova 3i for around 18 months and been very happy with it.

  • +1

    go master card or any of the interest free cards that retailers such as Harvey Norman or JB hifi offer etc.

  • +2

    Repair your phone if possible, there's enough electronics in the landfill already.

  • +1

    How are you paying for your phone plan currently? Some CC have screen insurance

  • Samsung website does 24m interest free

  • What phone do you want to buy?

  • Buy a $50 phone from Woolies to make calls and save up for the phone you want. If you can't save up you definitely can't afford to get one on a loan

  • I disagree with the blanket statements of saying OP shouldn't buy a flagship if they need to borrow money to purchase.

    Tech is a marketplace where more expensive items often work out better in the long run. I've seen people spend more on replacing several low-mid tier android devices in the span of time in which a singular flagship device would last. This isn't a guaranteed outcome, though; just not as impossible as others are implying.

    • A $1000 phone is never going to last 20 times as long as a $50 phone

      • They’re not even in the same product category when comparing those two. A basic phone and a smartphone are two distinct product categories given the gulf between their functionality.

        A $50 phone lasts exactly 0 seconds for someone wanting a smartphone, as it can never perform the function in the first place, let alone over a speculative duration of time.

        • What do you need a top line smartphone for?
          If you need to be able to respond to Facebook or whatsapp messages and access your email on the go etc there are plenty of sub $100 phones that can do that. Paying an extra $900 for a great camera and fast processor and access to wider variety of games and other apps is fine if you can afford it and you are choosing to spend your money on that instead of a holiday or a Playstation or whatever else you might choose to spend your money on. But if you don't have that money just lying around, going into debt just to gain a better camera etc when you can get the basic operations covered by something much cheaper is dumb. If someone posts here asking about going into debt to get a $100k luxury European vehicle instead of buying a perfectly good $25k car they will be told they are being stupid. A top tier phone is not going to last 20 times as long as a $50 phone from Woolies and it isn't going to last twice as long as a $500 phone. It will just be a better status symbol or maybe have a slightly faster processor or better camera, this is what you're paying for not the length of time it lasts

          • -2

            @Quantumcat: I’m trying not to be rude here, but you really don’t understand the functional differences across different price thresholds, and how longevity is affected through quality of hardware.

            Your original statement was absurd; $50 phones are an entirely different product class to smartphones.

            Your subsequent statements, especially the car analogy, further supports my belief that you need to do a lot more research into this space. So much so, that it would take far too long to do that for you.
            But I’ll at least justify my statement; a $25K car can do everything that a $100K car can do, except the latter offers luxurious additions which are not necessarily affecting the reason why someone purchases a car (transport from A to B). Smartphones have wide functional capacities across price points, such that your analogy is extremely off the mark.

            A true analogy would be if the budget car could only travel a finite, small distance, taking significantly longer to do so, and will only manage this half-baked functionality for a couple years before needing to buy a replacement. Meanwhile, the full priced car would have no such restrictions and would maintain this level of functionality several times the duration of that of the budget car.

            Flagship devices, nowadays, retail for $1200-$1500 (anything more is not a functional upgrade but a “luxury” upgrade, not unlike what your car analogy was aiming at, e.g screen size). A budget device which meets the criteria of doing everything that the flagship device can do (just slower, and at a lower quality) will cost you around $400-$600.
            The flagship device will sustain this functionality for 4-5 years, and will only really notice functional decline in year 4 or 5. Meanwhile, the budget device will experience an earlier functional decline, due to already having several-year old components when new, often within the first 1-2 year, rendering it no longer as functional as the flagship by year 3.

            And all of this is before considering when manufacturers cease providing software support. Since Android is made by Google, the phone manufacturer must then take the generic Android OS and provide individualised updates for each product. These budget products are usually only supported for 2 years, maximum, meaning that not only is function lost (as some apps will require newer software), which means this is no longer an apples to apples comparison, but the lack of security updates means you have all of your personal information, including banking, on a potentially vulnerable device. There is no way around cut update support.

            So, sure, you could buy two 400-600 dollar smartphones at an averaged cost of $1000 in the same period of time as your flagship. But for that entire 4-5 years, the two budget smartphones will always do tasks at a lower quality than the flagship device, and will do it slower, too. The quality of life is vastly different when a top of the line smartphone can have an app opened and message sent within 15 seconds, whilst it can take nearly 30 seconds to even begin constructing the message on a budget phone; how much do you value your time?

            Is $200-$400 over ~5 years worth living with a slower, buggier, objectively worse experience? Not for me, and for most people.

            The same goes for budget TV’s, headphones, etc. Tech is functional not just a “status symbol” - the fact that you believe the latter to be true is proof that you don’t know enough about this space, and you’re probably not the target audience.

            • @Strahany: You've managed to waffle on and on and still not say what functionality the flagship phone provides that is worth $900 more. Having OS updates just means you have a wider variety of apps and games to choose from. Is that worth $900? Maybe, to someone who has that disposable income to spend as they wish. If they prefer to have the latest OS instead of a new video game console or an extra few days on a holiday that's for them to decide. To someone who could use the money to buy an appliance instead of renting, to pay for rego on their car, to save for emergencies? No.
              People need phones - everyone is expected to be contactable 24/7. Many people need access to the net while out as well. But they don't need the latest OS to be contactable and use the net. Saying you "need" it is pure vanity. A five year old iPhone works perfectly well as does a cheap android device. Going into debt to have the latest and greatest is just dumb. There are smart things to get into debt for (investments), there are unavoidable things (vet bills, travel to see a dying relative, fixing car/house/etc when insurance won't help), and there are things that are not smart and not unavoidable. Latest best phones fit in this latter category.

            • @Strahany: Not sure too many people are keeping flagships for 5 years, still proudly rocking a Galaxy s6 or iphone 6s.

              After a couple of years the battery for a start will be deteriorating and cracked screens, scratches etc have often emerged. Certainly many nice, new phones, relegating the flagship status of your current model will have. Part of the reason for having flagships for many is being seen to have the latest model and they are all outdated within 12 months or so in that respect.

              A $400 phone might be slower, but not noticably so to most people and for most uses. And its far easier to drop 400 to buy a phone outright than it is to drop 1500. As a result many people are stuck on contracts which now often stretch to 3 years, borrowing to have these devices because they can't afford to buy them outright.

              I have a mid range phone, my wife has an iphone 11. Her camera is a little bit better but other than that no noticeable difference in performance.

  • For the amount to repair the phone you can't get much in the way of hardware specs of the s9.

    A refurb isn't always considered a great deal if you have treated your phone with care the. It's worth while to get it repaired as you know it's past history.

  • If I were you I would pay for the repair with Samsung.
    I have a Samsung Note 8 that I've had for 3 years and it is still going strong.
    Check the refurb prices on Kogan too.

    Also second the credit card screen replacement insurance. Amex Explorer and a few other cards do 10% excess screen replacements on any phone you buy with the card or pay a plan for.

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