The problem with reviewers and the iPhone SE is that it’s always going to be a step down. We live in an entitled bubble where the best phones are courier delivered to our homes or offices for us to use at our leisure. Basically, I’m saying we’re out of touch. And it’s true. But taking your SIM card out of an iPhone 13 or Samsung Galaxy S22 and into a phone worth half or a third of the price is a solid reality check.
And this week, using the iPhone SE for the last five days, has been amazing.
It’s very similar to when I stop booking cars to review and just enjoy the fun and simplicity of driving my 2010 Mazda 2, it bloody well does the job and I don’t see any reason to upgrade.
And that’s Apple’s problem. Plenty of iPhone 6, iPhone 6s, iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 owners out there who are unlikely to be rushing out to upgrade to an iPhone 13, let alone whatever masterpiece Tim Cook and his team reveal later this year.
Those customers want familiarity, they want simplicity.
The iPhone SE offers that, and it does it in spades.
A common and very familiar design, pioneered with the iPhone 6 almost eight years ago, it’s the 4.7 inch screen size those users love, and most importantly, that little round fellow at the bottom of the phone – the home button is still there.
And with that comes TouchID, Apple’s fingerprint recognition system.
It all – just – works.
But, throw in 5G and you know you’re going to have network connectivity for years to come, and under the hood, throw the A15 Bionic chip from the Apple iPhone 13.
Yep, all the power in the world, this thing flies.
Honestly, launching apps is effortless, a few cheeky games, for research purposes only of course and the power is all there just as it is on the iPhone 13.
Critically though, and while Apple won’t say it, this phone will last you five plus years. Because that A15 Bionic chip will have the power to run features in iOS 20. I’m almost certain of that.
My love for Apple Pay is heightened when TouchID is in the room, and for that reason it’s been a great five days. And frankly even unlocking the phone is great, without my awkward stares or mask removal.
Bottom line, this thing flies, and offers more than most would need at this level.
That said, it’s overpriced when you compare it to the Android market. There are $299 phones with more complex camera systems. That’s not to say they’ll take better photos, but you’ll have more options for sure.
But this isn’t about comparing Oranges to Apples, this is about Apples and Apples, and for this one company the $719 price tag on this means a lot. They could EASILY have charged $799 – the same price as the previous SE in 2020 and no-one would have battered and eye-lid.
They didn’t. They dropped the price, and that’s huge.
I think this is a fantastic phone, I love how lightweight it is, I love the size. Same reason I love the iPhone 13 mini. But I do miss the wide Angle or telephoto camera lenses of the iPhone 13 Pro – but hey, the bubble I live in huh.
Outstanding value for an iPhone, there’s really nothing more to it.
For a first iPhone, or a replacement of an older model, the iPhone SE is ideal.