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What Are the Pros and Cons of Buying the Cheapest Wi-Fi® Phone?

By Marco Sumayao
Updated May 17, 2024
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The chief pro of buying the cheapest Wi-Fi® phone is getting access to several useful features for the lowest possible price. Most low-cost Wi-Fi® phones have enough functionality to satisfy some individuals. The cons of buying the cheapest Wi-Fi® phone, however, outnumber the pros by a significant amount. The cheapest phones often have lower-quality hardware and might be less stable than more expensive models. There is also less technical and app support available for low-cost brands, as industry leaders typically dominate the market in this area. As a result, the cheapest phone available in an individual's market is often a poorer option than models at a slightly higher price range.

Buying the cheapest Wi-Fi® phone in the market will give an individual access to the most basic features of Wi-Fi® phones, which include Internet connectivity and web applications. Users will have access to social media applications and can make phone calls over the Internet without using the more expensive 3G or 4G networks. Most low-cost models also come with web browsers installed, giving users on-the-go Internet access whenever a Wi-Fi® hotspot is in the vicinity. Some models might also have dedicated email apps for the user's convenience.

These are often considered the most basic features of a Wi-Fi® phone, and they will suffice for many individuals. The cheapest Wi-Fi® phone available is usually priced at a significantly lower amount than other models and gives users with limited budgets a large amount of value for money. The accessibility offered by cheap Wi-Fi® phones is very favorable, contrary to popular opinion.

The cons to buying the cheapest Wi-Fi® phone, however, usually surface after prolonged use. Cheaper materials and production costs, for example, often lower Wi-Fi® phone reliability. The parts used to make the phone might wear down more easily over time than more expensive models, and the software might be more prone to errors. Over time, the costs used to repair poorly-made phones might outweigh the savings made at the time of purchase.

In addition to the decreased reliability, the cheapest Wi-Fi® phone in the market will likely have fewer technical support centers than more common brands, making repairs and advice slightly more difficult to obtain. Depending on the type of operating system (OS) used, there might also be a limited number of apps available to the phone — this is especially true if the OS was made by one of the less-common developers. The hardware of a cheap Wi-Fi® phone might also be limited, with issues such as poor display resolutions and weak signal reception.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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