Posted in Opinions

All hail the iPhone SE

A product that consumers need, rather than want


I’ve heard some comments from people who are dissatisfied with the new iPhone SE release. “Nothing new,” and “can’t tell it apart from the iPhone 5S,” are just a couple of the things I’ve heard since Apple’s keynote event unveiling their new products.

Thirty million smaller format iPhones were sold in 2015. That is not a small number. With a general consensus toward phones with large screens (of which I stubbornly remain unconvinced), a strong segment of Apple’s market seems to prefer their phones being around the range of Steve Jobs’ ideal for screen size; perfect for typing with one hand as well as fitting in most pockets.

With the built-in guts of an iPhone 6S, the iPhone SE is an improvement for those who, like me, have been carrying around their dusty old iPhone 5s. One thing the new phone seems to be missing is the 3D Touch feature — something I honestly think is a functionality most people can live without. It’s sort of the best of both worlds: a much faster version of a legacy form factor. It’s a bold move, and I think it will resonate really well with the consumers Apple is attempting to target.

Critiques of Apple’s latest don’t understand that this is not, in fact, a step backwards for the brand. For price-conscious consumers, it’s a very solid introduction into the Apple ecosystem, which used to be, and what is now the much slower, iPhone 5S. With the phone geared to be the affordable choice in Apple’s 2016 cell phone lineup, this move is incredibly smart because the phone now provides an enticing option for those who have held on to their old phones, as well as those who prefer the smaller form factor.

Sure, they could have made the SE thinner, or it could have included a brand new feature. But, then again, that’s something Apple can always keep in their back pocket for their next keynote event. This Spring was more about giving the people what they needed rather than they wanted: usability by way of portability, and an improved phone that serves as an introduction to Apple’s other products and services.

Apple has now bought themselves at least a year to improve the phone for their next iteration, which I’m sure will likely have 3D Touch, and a few other bells and whistles, along with new software and security upgrades by the time it is released. And as usual, I will stand at the Apple altar and marvel at their latest offering, slightly improved, and largely imitated from Android offering.

But this time around, I’ll be lining up to acquire the 64 gigabyte edition (no, not the Rose Gold colour — blek!) quite momentarily.