Consumerism is evil. You know this already. Nevertheless, sometimes you have to buy items for everyday life. One of the most expensive items that all of us need today is a smartphone. Of course, the super-savers or so called frugal people will say that it is not true. Nobody needs a smartphone. But let us be reasonable. Nowadays, everybody who wants to take part in social life and be reachable for the family or other people needs a smartphone. Living without smartphone can of course be done but it is not a good idea or brings on hardship that is unnecessary and absurd.
Buying a smartphone is thus something that most of us have to do, excluding that you might be given a smartphone as a birthday present. So what happens is that you look at different smartphones and you realize not only that there are tons of different versions but that there are also different brands. Usually, the functionality of the different phones is quite similar while the different brand names have different levels of prestige. The elephant in the room is of course Apple, whose phones are not more functional than other cheaper brands but they are simply a good luxury item to show around.
Buying the luxury brands, as for example Apple, is always a bad idea moneywise. It is not worth it. You can spend 120 EUR or 700 EUR and get an almost identical phone. Simply because one case says “Apple” and the other one says “HUAWEI” or some other brand, you will have to pay more for the first phone.
Often people around you will take hours to argue why the expensive one is so great and totally worth buying. But it is simply not true, or in other words it is great marketing. But marketing is not something that you want to spend money on, right? You want to get a smartphone that you can use to receive calls, Emails and use Apps with. That is all. Smartphones are nowadays status symbols and that is why they cost a lot of money if they are from a luxury brand like “Apple”.
This is why one should never buy a smartphone. If your company buys you an iPhone, of course you can take it. Or if you get it very cheap from someone else second hand, you might think about it. Or if it is your one major hobby to have an Apple phone. But it will not help you to become financially free and it is really not necessary to buy such brands if you simply want to have a smartphone to use it as such.
I can tell you what you can do if you like fancy luxury smartphones. And it is something that I would do and have already done in the past, because I do not think that iPhones are bad. Not at all. So I did buy a phone for 120 EUR from a cheap brand. I have the smartphone now for more than 3 years and it is still working, has a big memory card and everything is good. Then, I took the money that I saved, which in this case was about 580 EUR and simply invested it in ETF. That way I had a working smartphone plus dividend income from the leftover money. Instead of what I did, you could also just buy stocks from that luxury brand, which is a fun thing to do. So you do not only have that smartphone that you needed but also own not only a smartphone but the whole company that produces a type of phone that you admire.