Are you waiting for next year's model?

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| Published: September 11, 2013

When I have an upgrade available, I tend to use it pretty quickly. It's gone pretty much as it becomes available. Luckily my update date falls right around the start of November, so the majority of high-end devices have launched for the year, and unless a surprise is right around the corner, I can make a healthy choice for my next device.

For those who have upgrade dates at the beginning of the year, though, it can usually mean a "small" number of new devices to choose from, especially if that person doesn't want to choose a phone from last year. That means waiting, with the upgrade just hanging there, calling out, beckoning to be used up.

Yesterday we saw the announcement of the iPhone 5S (and iPhone 5C). Thanks to the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4S before it, we knew what to except at Apple's event: a bi-annual moderate upgrade from the year's previous model. The iPhone 5S is meant to be a minor upgrade. It's meant to be the perfect device for someone who is still using an iPhone 4S, or even earlier device. It's for those who waited on the iPhone 5, to see what was next.

The iPhone 5S was meant to usher in Apple's Touch ID. Now, next year, we'll see where that technology ends up and what it can do.

Not surprisingly, I get asked a lot around this time of the year if someone should "just wait" or not. It's a viable question. We're near the end of the year, and new devices are coming early next year, and those devices will probably be plenty interesting. I've never been one to subscribe to the "I'll just wait for the next one," simply because I feel like I'd always be waiting. I'd rather have fun with the new device now.

But, waiting has its benefits, especially if you don't want to spend any money to get a new handset. And I can't help but notice that I saw a lot more, "Should I wait?" questions throughout the year than I have before, especially with flagship devices.

Specifically, I was asked quite a bit with the launch of the Motorola Moto X if it would be better to wait for the next model. The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 saw plenty of the same attention to folks. Whatever the reason, these flagship "hero" handsets weren't good enough for quite a few people, and they feel like they'd be better off keeping what they have now and just waiting to see what's next.

There isn't anything wrong with waiting to see what's next, of course. And, in the case of the Galaxy Note 3, I can actually understand where you're coming from if you do want to wait. We've heard multiple times that Samsung is changing its physical design for its smartphones in 2014, moving from plastic to metal, so waiting to see how that pans out could definitely be worth it. And, even if they don't switch to metal, the next handset will obviously be better, anyway, right?

With the announcement of the iPhone 5S, the question is already starting to swirl around again. Should you wait for the next iPhone? Is the iPhone 5S a worthy upgrade over the iPhone 5? Is it worth the money?

The answer to that is wholly dependent upon you and your situation. If you want the new camera, the new processor, and are in the market for a new phone, then the iPhone 5S is probably a safe bet. And the same can be said for the Galaxy Note 3, the Moto X, or any other device for that matter.

I am very curious to know where you stand with the whole waiting thing. Are you planning on upgrading to the Galaxy Note 3, the G2, Motorola's Moto X, or Apple's iPhone 5S? Or are you going to wait until next year to see how these companies advance, and to see what they reveal with the next handset in those lineups? Let me know!