Don’t buy a new iPhone or Apple Watch right now

Tim Cook announces iPhone Pro at an Apple launch event.

Source: Apple

I was in the mall two nights ago shopping for back-to-work clothes and passed an Apple Store. It looked like lots of people were shopping for new iPhones. Part of me wanted to walk in and whisper to each of them: “Don’t buy one right now!”

But I didn’t. I kept walking and decided to write this instead.

It’s a bad idea to plop down money for a new iPhone or Apple Watch right now. Apple announced on Wednesday that it’s hosting a fall event on Sept. 7 that’s almost certainly for the iPhone 14. It may also announce new Apple Watches, though Apple sometimes separates the events. Bloomberg said the new iPhones could ship as soon as Sept. 16, just a few weeks from now.

Sure, maybe you don’t even care about getting the latest and greatest. You just want an iPhone. That’s fair. But there’s still a reason to wait. Apple typically drops the prices of its year-old iPhones after it introduces the new ones. So, you’re also saving money by waiting a couple of weeks.

Apple is planning four new iPhone 14 models this year, according to Bloomberg. You can reportedly expect a regular version, a bigger-screened version of the regular model for the first time, and two higher-end Pro models with extra bells and whistles. That bigger screened regular iPhone 14 might be appealing to folks who want the largest display on an Apple phone but who haven’t wanted to shell out more than $1,000 for the iPhone Pro Max.

You might also want to think of it as a long-term purchase. You use your phone every day. You probably use it to take pictures, maybe play games. So if you’re hanging on to it for a few years, maybe you should buy the latest model when it comes out — and if you can’t afford it right now, consider budgeting for it next year. It’ll get software updates for years to come. 

The same goes for the Apple Watch. Apple’s expected to introduce a new mid-tier Apple Watch SE model. That was last updated in 2020, so it should be a big upgrade to the budget-friendly model and will likely bring over some features that have been found in more expensive models for the past couple of years. Plus, Bloomberg says Apple is planning a new high-end Apple Watch Pro that could be more rugged. So, if that’s up your alley, you might also want to wait.

The decision’s up to you. But it seems that some folks don’t always know to expect new iPhones in September. At this point, I recommend you just wait to see what your options are. It can’t hurt!