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Take a Deep Breath and Choose

But wait! First you might want to take a look at some reviews if you're debating between two phones. Or maybe there are even more new features you don't yet know about.

Try not to get carried away, but visit CNet or Cell-Phone-Plans.net for reviews of the newest cell phones and the latest news on what's in store for the future. (For instance, Texas Instruments engineers have developed the first digital TV on a single chip for cell phones. The technology is not yet available, but this feature is sure to add to the fun and confusion.)

By now, you've probably devoted enough time to take the plunge. Endless weeks of shopping won't reveal anything new and will only add stress to the decision. In his book The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less (Ecco, 2004), psychologist Barry Schwartz says too much decision-making makes us unhappy. The overload of options can ultimately be a bad thing, causing unrealistic expectations and second-guessing. So make the decision and get on with life.

Oh, and don't throw your old cell phone in the trash, where it can be a threat to the environment. Instead, donate it to one of the following groups:

These organizations recycle phones to domestic violence victims, medical patients, or people in developing countries.

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