But what about depreciation?
Flagship Android phones usually launch at €499 and some models even go for a lot more, but early adopters of such phones really aren’t getting a good deal if they’re buying SIM-free versions and there is why.
Unlike Apple, Android vendors have to adjust pricing every now and then to keep up with new rollouts, which have become ridiculously fast paced in the Android world. So, off-contract prices tend to tumble just a couple of months after launch. Needless to say, a new round of price cuts has coincided with the iPhone 5 launch.
The Galaxy S3 16GB launched at €549 back in July, but our price search engine is already showing it available for €470 in Germany and some listings go as low as €450. The LG Optimus 4X also shed €100 in just a couple of months. It launched at €499 and right now it’s available for €380 to €390 in Germany and Austria. The HTC One X fares a bit better, it’s down €50 to €450 from €499 at launch.
However, in our opinion, the good old Galaxy Nexus is still the best deal. Although it’s almost a year old, it offers the best value for money and unadulterated Android experience with the freshest updates. It’s down to €299 in some shops, but €310 is a more realistic figure.
The same trend is visible in mid-range phones. The sleek HTC One S, powered by a snappy Krait processor is down to €370 to €380, but it’s still no bargain. Sony’s stylish Xperia P is down to €290 although it launched at €349 a few months ago. The champ is Panasonic’s razor thin Eluga, which is available for just €199, making it a truly unbeatable bargain for a dual-core phone with a hi-res screen and a rather fancy design.