Complete guide to 5G
5G technology: how it works
4G vs 5G: how they compare
5G use cases: examples of 5G
5G Dangers: the fact and fiction
5G Internet: will it replace fibre
5G security: the full picture
5G speed: guide and tools
5G phones: discover the best
5G networks: in the US and UK
5G stocks: investment tips
Now we're in 2020 5G phones - and the deals on 5G handsets - are going to really hot up. We're expecting a new raft of 5G handsets to launch from February onwards, starting with the Samsung Galaxy S11 series which we think will actually debut as the S20 series.
One by-product of newer 5G phones coming onto the market is tht networks and manufacturers will be keen to sell off their first generation 5G phones - the ones we've featured in this piece so far.
On this page we've gathered together the best 5G deals on the hottest handsets - whether you're buying 5G phones in the US or the UK. Our 5G deals are constantly updated with our easy-to-use and widgets which you can see below. These deals will change on a regular basis, so do check beck if you can't find what you want.
5G phone deals will take off in 2020
Even though 5G phones and networks remain in their infancy, this year will see the availability of 5G handsets ramp up significantly.
As well as the Samsung Galaxy launch, February sees the annual Mobile World Congress conference where we usually see a lot of phone announcements, so expect a lot of 5G devices to be shown off then.
We'll also see Huawei's new 5G phone series launch in March - the P40 and P40 Pro - although as with last year's Mate 30, it won't use Google apps which is a bit of a dealbreaker for many. 2020 will also see new 5G handsets from other manufacturers including Oppo, OnePlus, Moto and more. Plus we'll also see 5G phones from those who haven't yet produced a 5G device, Sony and Nokia being key among those names.
We're expecting the first 5G iPhone to be available later in 2020, almost certainly at Apple's September launch.
As we mentioned, this will have a knock-on effect as 2019's 5G handsets begin to be sold off at a discount. Indeed, this is already starting to happen. Also expect both the structure and cost of deals to change as we move into 2020, due to various factors - wider network rollout, increased interest in 5G from consumers and businesses and even the fallout from Brexit if you live in the UK.
What to look for when comparing 5G deals
- Look for 5G, not 4G - When you're looking for a 5G mobile deal you do need to be careful at the moment - while a lot of networks say that 5G is available at no extra cost, they may put you on a 4G tariff (especially if they're offering 5G phones yet don't yet have a 5G network fully launched). Essentially, you should check when signing up for a 5G phone that it will work on 5G networks by default (some networks appear to be saying you need to change your SIM when this time comes).
- Data - Unless you are planning to use mobile data sparingly, you need to have unlimited data with 5G deals. Our experiences with 5G so far indicate that being connected to a 5G network can eat through data fairly rapidly.
- Upfront cost - Deals on 5G devices remain expensive and you may be better off paying more upfront for a phone or buying one outright SIM-free - check out the prices below.
- Explore cheaper alternatives - Unless you're keen to have a phone from a particular brand, shop around. The price differences between networks are quite sizeable.
- Early bonus - The phones on this page are early 5G devices. Second-generation 5G phones are already beginning to debut. 2020 will see a flood of new entrants into the market including flagship devices. That means these older handsets will be available on much better deals at that point. There's not too much harm in getting ahead of the curve now - although 5G phones still tend to be a little more expensive than their 4G counterparts.
What to look for in a 5G phone
- Are they actually 5G? - This sounds ridiculous, but many 2019 phones are not 5G. So make sure you're not being duped into choosing a 4G phone.
- Physical size - Many 5G phones are large, due to the amount of cooling needed but also because of the trend for bigger phones at the premium end of the market. If you want a smaller 5G phone you'll need to wait.
- Only the features you need - 5G phones are mostly quite expensive, so it's important to choose one that actually suits your needs rather than going for the best one on a super-expensive deal. A classic example of this is with the Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ 5G; if you don't need the S-Pen stylus that comes with it then plump for something else instead.
- Battery life - Look out for the battery life, since 5G phones can be a bit more thirsty in this department. It's best to go for independent assessments, because manufacturers will always overstate this - sometimes by quite a lot.
- Camera - It's fair to say that the cameras on all of the below phones are strong, but it's worth looking up more information and camera samples if you want to take particular styles of photos. Night Mode is a particular strength of some handsets but still a weakness of others - make sure you're getting something that you want, especially if you're paying a lot of money for a 5G device.
The best 5G phone deals
Here we've suggested the top deals for each of the key 5G handsets currently on the market and we're adding more as big-name 5G phones continue to roll out.
Check back as these deals will change regularly - the price widgets are dynamically populated so they'll automatically be filled with the very latest and best deals.