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Consumers are being locked into longer mobile phone contracts new research shows, to make it more affordable to buy the best phones on the market.
A study by uSwitch.com revealed 39 percent of mobile phone users are now in a 24 month contract which is three times the number of people in a 12 month deal.
EU legislation aims to try to halt this by bringing back 12 month contracts and banning ones which are longer than 24 months.
The research showed there are over three thousand 36 months deals already on the market.
"Smartphones have proved great bait for providers in not only snaring new customers, but in making them commit to a longer contract,” said Ernest Doku, uSwitch.com's technology expert.
"Consumers could easily find themselves saddled with an obsolete phone, not to mention a contract that no longer suits their needs.”
Just 12 percent of consumers have a 12 month contract while 34 percent are tied into an 18 month deal, with the most common length being 24 months.
From 1st May the EU has ruled that phone retailers must offer consumers the option to take a 12 month contract, and any contracts longer than 24 months will be banned.
The worry is, however that the price of handsets could rise as a result of this new legislation.
The Cost of a New Mobile Phone
The research highlights the growing trend in consumers taking out longer contracts to be able to afford the handset they desire.
The new model smartphones which emerge on the market however change so often, with new deals constantly being updated, that longer contracts could see many left with an outdated deal.
The cost of a new phone can be expensive, but if you are locked into a lengthy contract it is vital you have adequate mobile phone insurance to cover any damages, which otherwise you would have to live with for the rest of the term.
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