Welcome to our roundup of the best 5G deals around. On this page, we've gathered together the best 5G tariffs on the hottest handsets - whether you're buying 5G phones in the US or the UK.
5G rollout was a little slower in 2020 due to the global situation, but 2021 is already proving to be a bumper year with numerous networks announcing new locations and increased capacity thanks to new spectrum allocations and investment in infrastructure.
From small beginnings, we've now reached a point where all but cheap phones are 5G enabled - any flagship or mid-range phones now boast 5G radios inside.
Many more 5G phones are now popping up at the mid-range and lower end of the market such as the OnePlus Nord or Samsung Galaxy A51 and A52 5G which are a steal on many deals.
The key thing about the rise of mid-range 5G models is that last-generation 5G handsets are only going to get cheaper. Often these models are less than a year old.
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 back if you can't find what you want.
What 5G phones are available now?
All the major brands now have 5G phones available including Apple with the iPhone 12 series, Google with the Pixel 5 and 4a 5G and OnePlus with its various handsets including the latest OnePlus 9 series.
Samsung still leads the way in terms of quantity with a full range of 5G phones now on the market including last year's Note 20 and Galaxy S20 series (and the newer S20 FE 5G variant) plus the Galaxy S21 series. There are plenty of 5G phones from other brands such as Xiaomi, Oppo, Redmi and Realme, too.
Oppo is certainly a name on the rise and it has just launched the Oppo Find X3 Series in the UK on Three and EE - those handsets are definitely worth checking out. Oppo is the sister company to OnePlus and is already getting a good reputation for quality phones.
OnePlus is shortly to follow up last year's mid-range OnePlus Nord launch with the OnePlus Nord 2, while Samsung will introduce new foldable phones soon too, probably the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Galaxy Z Flip 3.
Later in the year we'll see the new iPhone series, which some are saying will be called the iPhone 13, but we'd say that a hop over to 14 or even 12 S as a name could well be on the cards. The jury is also out as to whether there will be four handsets again. Some reports suggest that Apple is not going to produce a follow up to the iPhone 12 mini, although other analysts suggest it has sold well. Time will tell.
What 5G phones are coming out in 2021?
Every flagship phone in 2021 will be a 5G phone. That includes the iPhone 13 (or more likely 14) when that arrives later in the year, the Samsung Galaxy Note 21 and the Huawei P50 series. We are also expecting more new phones from OnePlus, Nokia, Xiaomi and many other names over the coming months.
There are also numerous high-end foldable devices on the way such as the rumoured Galaxy Fold E, which is expected to be cheaper than the current Galaxy Z Fold 2.
We'll update this list with more handsets as we hear about them. While the pandemic did appear to have an effect on some 2020 launches, we're not expecting this to be the case for the majority of 2021. Indeed, the Samsung Galaxy S21 even launched earlier than we had anticipated.
What to look for when comparing 5G deals
- Look for 5G plans - If you're not buying a network plan with a 5G phone, check your existing plan is 5G-enabled with your provider. You may need to pay more in some cases.
- Data - Unless you are planning to use mobile data sparingly, you need to have unlimited data with 5G deals - or at least a generous data allowance like 10 or 20GB. Our experiences with 5G show that you eat through data fairly rapidly.
- Upfront cost - You may be better off paying more upfront for a phone or buying one outright SIM-free and then adding a 5G plan yourself.
- 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, even for the same device.
What to look for in a 5G phone
- Are they actually 5G? - Many older devices aren't 5G. So make sure you're not being duped into choosing a 4G phone.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.