Less than a year after the release of the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, Apple has announced the release of the new iPhone SE, which will be smaller, with a cheaper price.
One of the notable features of the iPhone 6 was that it was significantly larger than the previous model, the 5s. While this size appealed to some users, it was also a drawback to others who preferred the smaller 5s. The SE is likely to appeal both to users who preferred the smaller size of the previous model and to users who want some of the features of the “6” line of iPhones without having to pay the price that comes along with them.
The phone is four inches, and is being described as “the most powerful 4-inch phone ever.” Apple is using the tagline “a big step for small,” clearly demonstrating a desire to appeal to consumers who did not like the larger size of the 6.
The iPhone SE is currently set to cost $320 less than the 6s, according to CBC, and will contain many of the same features. However, some of the features will not be included; the front-facing camera (or “selfie camera”) in the SE will be of a lower quality than in the 6s, the SE will not include a barometer like the 6s, and the 3D Touch feature that was being touted as one of the 6s’s major innovations will not be included.
The SE uses the same chip from the 6s (the A9 chip), allowing for similar graphics and performance. The CPU performance, according to Apple’s website, is two times faster than the previous iPhone 5s and the GPU performance is three times faster. The rear camera, unlike the front-facing camera, is 12 megapixels, which is the same as the 6s.
The front-facing camera, despite being of lower specs than the 6s, is still of reasonably good quality at 1.2 megapixels, and it also has a flash setting for selfies.
One area, besides size and cost, where the SE actually excels over the 6s is in battery life. CBC reports that the battery life for video and web surfing will be 13 hours, which is more than the 6s.
The phone will likely be a welcome option for fans of smaller phones who were hesitant to give up their 5s. People who preferred the previous generation’s smaller size, either because it fit well in their hands, or because of easier storage in pockets or purses, were left with no real option in the current generation, as the 6 and 6 plus were both substantially larger than the 5s, and there was no alternative available from Apple. The SE will fill the current gap in the phone market for small phones with up-to-date technology. The Verge reports that, while the SE will have substantially updated technology, it is aesthetically identical to the 5s with the exception of more colour options, matte edges, and an updated Apple logo on the back.
The SE will come in two options for storage: 16GB and 64GB. Unlike the 6s, it will not come in a 128 GB version. It will also come in four colour options: Space Gray, Gold, Silver and Rose Gold, and starts at $579.00. The SE will be released on March 31.