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Beginner's guide to smartphones

Getting your first smartphone is an exciting time, but learning what you can do with it can be overwhelming. So we've put together all you need to get started—from what a smartphone is, to setting up and learning about data usage.

Thinking of getting your first smartphone?

What's a smartphone?

A smartphone is just like any other mobile phone—you can still make calls and send texts. But you can also access the internet, send and receive emails, download apps and games, and check your social networking sites, like Facebook and Twitter.

Watch this video to see what your smartphone can do

What are the benefits over a normal mobile phone?

Always connected with loved ones


When you want, how you want, where you want. Keeping in touch with friends and family is easier on your smartphone - with instant access to email, social networking and photo sharing.

Internet in the palm of your hand


Large touchscreens and fast processor speeds make it easy to do the things you love online. Whether that's shopping, streaming YouTube clips, booking flights or even banking.

Personal entertainment


Large screens and clear sound make your smartphone perfect for music and video on the go. Built in cameras are standard features on all smartphones so you can capture and share memories wherever you are.

There are apps for everything


Add and personalise the features of your smartphone by downloading apps to help you get organised, stay informed and have fun.

The most popular apps are games, social media apps like Twitter and Facebook, and news apps like RTE News — but you can get an app for almost anything. There are loads of free apps and some you have to pay for. Find out what apps are available in your smartphone's app store...

Just got your new smartphone?

How to set it up

Our simple, step-by-step phone guides show you how to set up and use your phone. Find out how to:

  • write and send text messages
  • set up your email
  • turn WiFi on and off
  • set up Facebook
  • get apps to your phone
  • and much more...

Explore our interactive phone guides

Interactive phone guides

Vodafone apps you might like

Here's some of our essential apps to get you started.


My Vodafone app

Keep track of your account on the go

With the My Vodafone app, you can keep track of your account on the go, check your usage and details and even send a webtext. Whether you're bill pay or pay as you go, you can download our app for free.


Vodafone Backup+

Access your content from any device

Backup+ and Dropbox work together to keep the precious content on your mobile safe. This innovative partnership means you can be re-assured that your content is stored safely and always accessible from your smartphone, tablet or PC.


Learn about mobile data usage and costs

Watch our video to see what you can do with 1BG of data.

 Video explaining what you can do with 1GB of data

The added features of a smartphone uses mobile data. The amount of data you use depends on how much time you spend on the internet and how often you use your apps, as well as how rich the content is — e.g. watching a video uses a lot more data than looking at photos.

Get the right data plan

Make sure you're on the right data plan for your data usage, so there's no need to worry about additional costs. We've got great bill pay plans and top up offers with data included, so you can sign up for as much data as you need.

Manage your data usage

Here's some tips to make sure you don't overuse on data.

  • Monitor your data usage using the My Vodafone app or Vodafone Data Monitor app.
  • Close down your apps if you're not using them— many apps use data in the background, even when they're not active. You can download the Task Killer app to close most apps in one go.
  • Be aware that streaming or downloading videos and music can use large amounts of data. It's best to do this when you're connected to WiFi.
  • Set up your email and Facebook for manual download or less frequent automatic checks in the settings menu. They will frequently and automatically check for and download data, unless they're set up not to.

Using data abroad

  • Data usage doesn't have to be expensive if you're going abroad. Just make sure you opt in to the right roaming offer.
  • And remember to save heavy data usage, like watching videos and listening to music, for when you're connected to WiFi.

Data usage guide

Estimate your data usage

Worried about data? Control data usage and reduce costs on your smart phone with this handy guide from Vodafone.

Learn about data

My Vodafone

Keep track of your account

Login to My Vodafone regularly to keep track of how much data you're using each month.

Login to My Vodafone

Helpful online services for your smartphone