Upgrade Time.

Disclaimer: I am not important enough yet to be sponsored by anyone, therefore all products and brands in this post are mentioned solely based on my own personal experiences with them.

I can recall the days when smart phones were using BlackBerry, Palm OS and Windows… no not Windows Phone, literally just a phone running a mini mobile version of Windows actual OS. Watching both Android and Apple innovate has been fun and while I have slowed down from my previous habit of getting a phone 2 or more times a year… I still love admiring the new releases. However, this year I am not just looking, but have had to debate on what I am actually going to upgrade to because my iPhone 11 is starting to show its age.

It has been a great phone and got me through the pandemic very well. Not to mention, it’s in my favorite color (purple)! Yet, I have come to realize that based on the way I use my phone, I need more than 128GB. I’m one of those people who often plays mobile games; some of which vary in size from 5GB to as much as 10GB. Constantly having to offload the apps and then reinstall them can get old really fast. I also like to keep at least 5GB worth of music downloaded for airplane trips or when I may need some entertainment in an area with poor signal. If I could, I would probably download a few episodes of a show or perhaps a movie. Unfortunately, I know that even with backing up Photos, iMessage, etc. to the iCloud… I still do not have enough storage for my desired personal use.

As a result, long before Apple’s event last week, I knew 256GB or more would be the minimum I would accept for my next phone. To be honest I did ponder going back to Android for a bit. I was a fanatic of theirs for awhile and even went as low as calling Apple fan’s sheep at one point. Things just change with time and there have always been things I like about both. I remember rocking an iPod Touch while having an Android phone in the early days just to be able to get some experience with both platforms. Android was always a favorite for customization but iOS always had snappy performance and prettier apps. I eventually got an iPhone 6S as my first iPhone and held onto that for quite a while. I have always loved that iPhones continue to get updated more often (and for longer) than most Android phones. They also seem to retain their value a lot better as well. I went back to Android when Google’s Pixel line first came out and bought its first two iterations, followed by a OnePlus 7 Pro.

In early 2020, I returned to iPhone and honestly have not looked back. I still have a Lenovo Android tablet and until recently I had my OnePlus 7 Pro as a backup phone that was holding its own after 3 years (aside from the battery life). So Android is still getting lots of love in my home. Now that my iPhone 11 is struggling with battery performance and playing along a very thin line of running out of storage; I figured that it would be time to upgrade to an iPhone 14 if the difference between the two was substantial enough.

I was hopeful when I woke up from a nap last Wednesday to watch the pre-recording of the Apple event. I knew I would be looking forward to upgrading to their latest and greatest or doing research on a new Android device (perhaps even giving Samsung a glance for the first time since the Note 2). Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against Android or any manufacturers that use it in their phones… I just have grown accustomed to certain things.

For example, one of my best friends was a diehard Android fan for the longest yet, in the few years since I switched over to iPhone again, he followed me. Over time we both got Apple Watches, then Air Pod Pros and essentially now are only missing out on an iPad and MacBook. So, that plus having at least half of the people I text on a regular basis also having iPhones or using third-party apps like Signal and WhatsApp… has turned me to into a blue bubble person that is deep into Apple’s ecosystem.

Further still, I’m a part of my bestie’s Apple family which means we share subscriptions to iCloud, Apple Music, News+, Arcade and TV+. Why on earth would I want to leave all of that behind?! Thus, I was pleasantly surprised when they announced the iPhone 14 and its tech specifications. It may not be much of an improvement for iPhone 13 users, but for me coming from an iPhone 11 it looked perfect on paper and in the video. Easy choice, right? Well, you would think so but then they showed the iPhone 14 Pro and I swear I had literal hearts pop out of my eyes. 😍

I normally settle for the base version of the iPhone because I feel like I don’t really need the extra bells and whistles but this year I was like, “pfft! I’m treating myself”. That camera set up is amazing, and could actually save me a bit of money as I was originally planning to find a stand-alone camera for my future YouTube videos. So, once I had made my decision on the iPhone 14 Pro 256GB in Deep Purple, I had to make the choice of when I would attempt to get it. A phone that cost $1099 USD is not easy to acquire when you are not currently employed and only getting money from little freelance gigs, family and friends.

So, pre-order morning came and went with me thinking “hmm, maybe after it’s been out a month or so”. But behold, the power of friendship! My same best friend I mentioned earlier was originally going to help me with getting a camera for YouTube so, when I told him about my plans to upgrade, I had hoped he may be able to help a bit and he came through with paying the taxes on it. Then another best friend pitched in with the cost for the upgrade fee and voila (they literally called it teamwork 😅).

Thanks to Verizon I was able to bill everything to my account so it won’t actually be due until I get my bill for October, but that’s not even the best part. I will only be paying the full monthly cost for the phone for maybe a month or two because they are giving me a trade-in credit of $800 USD that will kick in after the first couple bill cycles. As a former Verizon employee, I have actually seen it start on the second bill some times, but I am going to budget in anticipation of it taking three months.

The only downer about this whole deal is having to wait a full 36 months to pay the phone off if I want to receive that full trade-in credit. Knowing me, I still won’t wait that long to do so. Why? Well, because I like fully owning my device and I know that my iPhone 11 is not actually worth $800 USD. It is worth maybe $250 USD at best if we are being honest here. So, my plan is to make sure that I do not pay it off until I have gotten at least that much back in bill credits, and of course to not fully pay it off before I am financially ready to do so as well. I will be paying about $9 USD extra on my phone bill which still leaves it under $100 USD per month (which is manageable for me). So, win-win all the way around.

I should hopefully have mine by some time on Friday thanks to ordering via Verizon and not Apple directly. I can’t wait to do a brief write up on my initial impressions with it. I have been playing around with iOS 16 since the public beta came out*, so it won’t be a completely new experience. However, it will be awesome to see the software in tandem with superior hardware and I cannot wait.

* Which aside from age, could be a contributing cause for my increasingly poor battery life on the iPhone 11. Oops!

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