Apple's iPhone SE launch was "meh", but maybe that's the point

Lynsey Barber
Follow Lynsey
The iPhone launch was underwhelming for many people (Source: Getty)

People still want a small phone that fits in their pocket.

Yes yes, Apple has been trumpeting about bigger screens for the last year, so you’d be forgiven for thinking that was the future. But the average joe? Probably doesn't care as much about that as the most avid Apple fan, journalist or tech analyst surrounding themselves with EVERY single thing that's happening ALL THE TIME at that very moment in time that's always SO important.

There are people out there who really don’t check their phone first thing when they wake up, spend their commute glued to Netflix or rely on a smartphone for every basic need and want all that on a giant screen. In fact, these people probably outnumber those super-smartphone users considering that would probably be most people over the age of 30, if we're honest.

A lot of people care about having the latest most dazzling device. And they like to shout about it. A lot really don’t. And they're just busy getting on with life.

And that’s why many found the launch of the iPhone SE less than impressive. It had the brains we had already seen last year wrapped up in a three year old shell. Wall Street went “meh”, journalists said it was “boring”, “nothing new” and more “meh” (just search “Apple meh” on Twitter). It was a collective ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

But that doesn’t matter. They're just the ones who care. The iPhone SE is a wolf in sheep's clothing.

It appears to be a lesser device, but the pint-sized stature hides power every bit as good as the 6s.

And there are those that don't care about parading around the latest flash device that has the world abuzz. No one can escape the Apple brand, but maybe when those people, normal people - your Mum or Dad, or luddite husband in my case - are shopping for a new phone, whether they have an old Apple or a rival brand, they see the cheaper, pocket-sized Apple phone that hasn’t been hyped to death for some new-fangled feature they really couldn’t care less about, or might even put them off.

It doesn't have a curved display or some sort of weird feature designed to set it a part from rivals. It's just a normal phone from a brand they know that does the job. They can put it in their pocket and forget about it.

Maybe, they say, hey, this iPhoneSE is the one for me. Small. Simple. Approachable. Unassuming. And then, like a trojan horse, they discover it takes quite a nice picture, that it’s pretty quick to use when they’re not just at home on wifi, or that they can connect with their kids on Facetime rather than just speaking over the phone.

The iPhone SE is a phone for people who go ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ to Apple, but gives them everything they didn’t think they needed. And that’s good for Apple. Because when they go to upgrade, whenever that is, they'll say, hey, that Apple SE was a great choice.

City A.M.'s opinion pages are a place for thought-provoking views and debate. These views are not necessarily shared by City A.M.

Related articles