Apple has a new iPhone on the way that looks incredible, is faster than ever, and … is outrageously expensive. The base model costs $A1,579.
But there’s good news, friends: There’s a far better iPhone out there right now, and it costs less than half the price of the absurdly priced iPhone X.
That phone is the iPhone SE — Apple’s best iPhone. Here’s the deal:
Assuredly, millions of people will excitedly plunk down a full stack for the iPhone X. It's more than just a phone -- it's a status symbol. I get it. It's a much more affordable version of a Ferrari. Fine. But I'm a Honda Civic kinda guy.
I want something affordable, powerful enough, and long-lasting. I'm not trying to impress anyone, nor am I the kind of person who lives on the bleeding edge of tech gadgets. That's why I was excited to see that, alongside the announcement of the iPhone X, Apple quietly made the iPhone SE $130 less expensive.
At $550 to start, with 16 GB of storage and the internals of an iPhone 6S, the iPhone SE is the perfect Honda Civic of smartphones.
The chip that powers the iPhone SE also powers the iPhone 6S and the most recent iPad. It's called the Apple A9, and it's more horsepower than you need in a smartphone -- Apple calls it 'the most powerful 4‑inch phone ever,' specifically due to that chip.
More than just a zippy device, the A9 powers 4K video recording, high-definition games, and pretty much everything else you want to do with your iPhone. Most importantly, the A9 makes the iPhone SE feel like a modern phone in terms of everyday use.
Don't worry: Everything from 4K video to HDR photos is built into the iPhone SE. And yes, you can do Live Photos on the iPhone SE just like you would on any other recent iPhone.
Most importantly, though, you can easily snap crisp, beautifully detailed photos using the iPhone SE's 12-megapixel rear camera. Like the A9 chip at the heart of the iPhone SE, the same camera from the iPhone 6S is built into the iPhone SE.
The new iPhone X is a massive hunk of glass, metal, and silicon. We're talking about a phone that comes in a single size -- nearly six inches tall and three inches wide.
The iPhone SE, by comparison, seems tiny. Here's the thing: It isn't. The iPhone SE seems tiny only by comparison, as we've all gotten used to smartphones getting bizarrely larger every year. Some folks love this embiggening, choosing to purchase 'Plus' versions of the iPhone. I am not one of those people, and you may be like me. If that's the case, the 'small' iPhone SE is right up your alley.
BONUS: The iPhone SE easily fits into, say, a small clutch, while many of the hulking 'Plus' models of iPhone won't. Something to consider!
Starting with the iPhone 7 in 2016, every new iPhone -- including the iPhone 8 and iPhone X -- dropped the headphone jack. If you already own Bluetooth headphones -- or are looking to drop over $230 on Apple's AirPods -- this isn't a huge problem. Maybe you never use headphones? Also not a big problem for you.
But I have a daily commute on a subway, as do millions of other people, so headphone jacks are something I consider a crucial feature on any modern smartphone.
There's nothing quite like the frustration of going to listen to music, only to find that your Bluetooth headphones are out of power. You know what never happens with wired headphones? That! That literally never happens!
Despite Apple making it seem like you need the newest iPhone in order to get the latest Apple experience, the truth is that every recent iPhone model runs the same version of iOS that the newest model does.
On the iPhone SE you get the same access to Apple's walled garden of products and services (the App Store, for instance), the same security updates, and the same new emojis as every iPhone X owner.
Apple does an excellent job at making people believe they need the newest iPhone. Every September, a variation of the same dog-and-pony show touts whatever the latest iPhone is as 'the best iPhone ever made.' Even if that were true every time, each person has their own preferences. You might care a lot about the front-facing camera, for instance -- and, in that respect, you may want to go with a different model than the SE.
Good news: There's a really simple, easy to use iPhone comparison tool that Apple offers on its website -- check it out right here before you buy any new iPhone!