IPhone SE was officially launched Monday night, during an Apple special event. The giant from Cupertino has presented to the world the most powerful 4-inch smartphone and, at the same time, its cheapest phone. But that was supposed to happen in 2013.
Three years ago, the press was roaring with rumours related to the launch of a cheaper iPhone. In September 2013, during the Apple event, we wrote about a phone that was not even an iPhone and was cheaper. It turned out to be the iPhone 5C, the phone which even some of the most passionate fans hated, that came with a lower hardware spec than the iPhone 5S model (released concurrently), and with a not so good price: $449 for the version with 16 GB of storage space. iPhone SE is the phone which Apple should* (read: we wished) have launched at that event.
IPhone SE has the specifications of the current generation of iPhones. It has an A9 processor and a 12MP camera. It misses Force Touch, but it comes with iOS 9.3 and the beautiful aluminium body of the iPhone 5S. The price? The lowest that an Apple phone has ever had: $399 for 16 GB version. Not everyone was excited about its launch, but it’s a product that matters to Apple, and that’s not necessarily a good thing.
When the iPhone SE was launched, Apple has withdrawn the 5S model from the market model, which was sold at similar prices. For whom is the iPhone SE made? For Apple in the first place. It’s a “fill” device, a model which many can afford and which will cause good statistics at the event in September when Tim Cook will brag about it as it always does. The analysts will be excited, the stock price will rise, and everyone will enjoy the launch of iPhone 7.
Apple’s strategy is becoming increasingly evident and is not at all new. Samsung maintains the first place in terms of sales exactly for the same reason: in addition to the peaks of the range S7 and S7 edge, it also sells several mid-range gadgets, such as the Samsung Galaxy A3 or Galaxy J5. However, Apple’s motion in this direction can lead to the destruction of the values that users appreciate so much from the company.
The Apple fans might no longer be Apple fans after they will open their eyes and realise that the Cupertino giant lies them year after year, with a smile, looking towards their wallets.
How long will the Cupertino giant succeed to lie everyone, that the products it launches are really new? iPhone SE, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, iPad Pro 9,7 and iPad Pro are practically the same device in different sizes. The company is no longer struggling to make new hardware, but it simply recycles the old one. On Monday, Apple tried to trick everyone that has launched a new phone but has just released a smaller one.
But Apple has nothing to lose in the short term. The development costs for the iPhone SE were insignificant, compared to the development of a new device, the components were already present, as well as the housing. In the long run, however, it might lose some of the users who truly want useful innovation. Such a battery that recharges in only 90 minutes. Or a gadget that is able to resist the moment you drop it in the water.