In less than a week, you’ll be able to purchase the newest iPhone: the iPhone SE. What makes this iPhone stand out from their recent releases is the fact that Apple has reverted back to their 4” display days. As mobile-phone users, a lot of us have grown very comfortable with the productivity and feel of larger phones. Any phone produced these days with a display smaller than 5” is considered abnormally small and would likely be disadvantaged in the market. However, it definitely looks like Apple is going after this stigma by manufacturing a phone specifically tailored for the niche of people who just couldn’t get on board with the “phablet” fad.
The iPhone SE is essentially a significantly upgraded version of the iPhone 5S–and for many people, the upgrade that Apple missed by doing the iPhone 6’s release. The SE has an extremely similar design to the 5S, including the flat chamfered edges, sides, back, and front. It has the same logo designs and locations, including the matte styles. Other than the change with the camera–which looks flush now–, fans will be able to choose between Space Grey, Silver, Gold, and the ever popular Rose Gold.
While there’s not much change on the outside, the internals of this phone received a massive boost. With the exception of 3D Touch (which is quite a shame, considering the extensive marketing Apple did to promote the feature) this is basically the iPhone 6S packed into a smaller case. The SE will be a ‘love it or hate it’ phone. Either you’ll love the size or you’ll find yourself constantly squinting and zooming into things to see better.
I personally find that I’ve really grown to embrace the phablet trend. There was once a time when I thought the Galaxy S2’s 4.3” screen was too big and I made jokes about people who used the original Galaxy Note 1. Now, I can’t even imagine going back to anything smaller than 5”. Even the iPhone 6S feels too small. While a smaller phone was more convenient to carry around and felt less fragile in my hands, it’s just not worth sacrificing the screen estate that I’d grown so accustomed to. However, this also goes back to the idea of one-handed operation. The one-handed operation function on the iPhone 6 and later does not even begin to reflect the feel and function of being able to actually reach all four corners of the screen with just your thumb. Even if I need both hands to do anything on a bigger phone, I can do so much more on it than on a 4” display.
For many consumers, however, doing less is the point. For these people, a phone is simply an accessory or a companion rather than an essential centerpiece to their daily activities. It doesn’t need to replace a computer or be a primary note-taking device. They won’t be regularly pounding out essays of emails on the phone, so they don’t need it to be phablet-sized. This means that those who purchase the iPhone SE will likely be newcomers to the iPhone or upgrading from the 5S (or older), because the group that’s already moved on from the era of 4” phones would have already grown used to the extra space.