Which new phones are coming out this year?
The phones we’re talking about here have already been announced or widely rumoured. We can’t guarantee that these launches will happen or when, but this is the word on the street…
If you’re desperate for the latest, snazziest model from a particular brand, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on their website to see what they’re saying.
As soon as we know more, we’ll tell you about the new-release phones in detail, so check for links to the specs which we’ll add when we know them.
The whole world seems to be looking forward to the launch of the iPhone 13 and its predicted camera improvements. But some speculation says that with 13 being an unlucky number for some, it may have a different name when it’s launched at the back end of 2021 for the Christmas market. It’s not clear whether the whole range will be launched at once or if it will just be the flagship phone in 2021.
Also anticipated is the iPhone SE 2 Plus, with the SE 3 now being predicted for 2022.
The Pixel 5a 5G launched on 17 August 2021. A more affordable take on the Pixel 5. If you’re looking for the next flagship entry, then Google’s big launch of the year is set to be the new Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, coming this autumn. There are also rumours of a Folding Google Pixel. With Android 12 making it possible and other brands in the race, Google may want to get ahead of its mobile rivals.
Rumours of a huge battery are rife, together with a high-resolution camera and huge sensors for the Huawei P 50 Pro. October looks likely as the launch date in Europe, with an earlier, end of July, debut in home market China. What could be interesting is to see how the brand deals with the continuing US government ban on Google apps and services being installed on its devices on release.
There’s definitely a fog around launch dates and spec for the Nokia X 50 – including its final name. Rumours speculate it will have five rear cameras, all fulfilling different roles including ultrawide, telephoto and macro, similar to the Nokia 9 PureView. Mid-October is the potential release date.
Users who mourned clamshells and flip phones may be eagerly awaiting the launch of Samsung’s newest incarnations of foldable phones, the Galaxy Z Flip 3 and the Galaxy Z Fold 3. Officially unveiled during their recent livestream, they’re both set for release on 27 August 2021. The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE may also be unveiled soon, promised as a cheaper version of the flagship phone.
The best of the rest
Other anticipated models to hit the UK this year include the Honor 50 – already launched in China but no date yet set for the UK – targeting Vloggers, Oppo’s X 2021 rolls or slides out to expand, apparently inspired by tank tracks, while on 22 July the OnePlus Nord 2 5G launched with the OnePlus 9T due around September/October.
How often do new phones get released?
It depends. Some of the big phone manufacturers may have a release early in the year and the autumn. One may be a big new release while the other is an upgrade or a budget model of an existing phone – or maybe just an announcement about an upcoming flagship phone. There’s always quite a lot of speculation about dates for new releases, before the manufacturer’s announcement.
Possible changes to release schedules in 2021
For 2021, the pandemic may well have complicated potential release dates, as lockdowns around the globe have led to a shortage of semi-conductor and microchips.
So it’s difficult for mobile phone makers to be sure when they’ll be able to produce the number of new phones they’d want to distribute for a big launch and get them shipped for a particular date. Apple and Samsung have already delayed or put release dates at risk this year.
There are quite a few new releases slated for what’s left of 2021 but the dates might be more movable than usual. It’s likely that release dates will be announced at short notice.
How often should you change your phone?
It’s up to you how often you change your phone. It will most likely depend on whether you’re someone who makes do with what you’ve got if it’s working, or if you want the features the most up-to-date models offer.
Generally speaking, contract phones are priced for you to pay off the phone in around two years. You may have to pay a penalty if you leave the contract early, but if you let your contract run onto a rolling monthly deal, you could be paying more than you need to, as you may be paying the same price but having paid off the cost of the handset. This is why it’s a good time change your phone.
If you’re more budget-conscious, you might consider around every four years, as that’s when things start to break or stop working.
But simply keeping a mobile until it stops working has risks. You may have things stored on your phone that you can no longer access if they’re not saved to the cloud or elsewhere.
When deciding if the time’s right to get a new mobile, here are some things you might want to consider:
- Do you need it or simply want it? Check how much has really changed or upgraded between your existing model and the one you want. Are the new features that much better? If you do upgrade your phone very regularly, it could be better to time the switch to match major design improvements rather than an upgrade to an existing model. You don’t want to spend a lot of money just for marginal gains.
- Have you outgrown your phone? Do you now need it to do more? Do you find yourself in a situation where you can’t run the apps you want on your phone’s old operating system?
- Has your picture quality got worse? Is your camera giving poor results because the lens has been scratched or damaged? Has dropping it resulted in the sensor not working or the optics going out of alignment? If so, it might be time for a new smartphone.
- Do you need a better camera? There have been huge changes in camera technology with wide-angle and telephoto lenses. This can be particularly useful if you’re the kind of person who just wants to point and shoot.
- Do you want a 5G phone? If where you live is having 5G installed, it might be worth getting a new phone to maximise the benefits from a faster 5G network, particularly if you use a lot of data.
- Is your phone slow to start and takes a while to switch between apps? This can be an indicator that the phone’s processor is struggling. Some of the upcoming phones might have bigger or better chipsets that can handle demands better.
- Is your operating system outdated? If your phone manufacturer is no longer providing updates to the operating system (OS) it might be time for something new. With an outdated OS your phone is a bigger security risk and it may be more vulnerable to cyberattacks.
If you’re considering a new phone purely to get more storage, you could delete unused apps, save photos on the cloud and delete them from your device. If you’ve got a memory card, you could switch to a card with a bigger capacity.
Where can I find the best mobile phone deals?
We can help you compare the latest mobile phone deals. You can compare by network or mobile manufacturer to find the best value on offer at the time from the providers we work with.
You’ll be able to see upfront costs, monthly costs and how much data and how many texts and minutes you’ll get for your money, whether you want a 4G or 5G plan.
Our aim is to include new upcoming mobile phones as soon as the details and pricing plans become available to us. With new big launches there’s often a lot of competition for customers with special deals on offer, so it can be a good time to see check out what all the networks are offering.Start comparing now
What should I do with my old phone?
There are a few options:
- Keep it as a back-up – if your old phone is still working, it could be useful if you have a disaster and lose or break your new phone.
- Sell your phone – some high street mobile stores may offer you a trade-in on a new model. Online, there’s a choice of companies who are happy to refurbish and re-sell phones. If phones aren’t re-saleable they can be broken up for their components and rare metals. Some companies will even take – and pay for – damaged phones.
You’re likely to get the most money for fairly recent top-of-the line phones. You can generally find out how much you’re likely to get by going to one of their websites and entering the make and model of the phone. You’ll have to post your phone to the company.
Do your research first, as while there are some reputable companies, there are also some dodgy ones too.
If yours is a recent high-spec phone, you might also be able to sell it on eBay, or an equivalent, yourself. Some of the oldest mobile phones are now collectors’ items! But the condition the device is in can make a huge difference to the price.
- Donate your phone to charity – the charity will usually provide you with a freepost envelope to send it to them.
- Give your phone away – you might find someone who wants it on Freecycle or similar.
- Recycle your phone – you should avoid putting your phone in the bin. If it goes into landfill, the battery can leak and put nasties into the water system. Most of the valuable materials used to make your phone can be recycled. Your local council recycling centre will generally be happy to take your phone where they accept ‘small electricals’.
Whatever you do, don’t forget to wipe any personal data off your phone and do a factory reset.