Apple Keynote: Thoughts on the New iPhone SE and More
Here's the important bit out of the way first: the iPhone SE will be available in 16GB and 64GB models and is priced at S$658 and S$828 respectively. I find it interesting that while Apple acknowledged that they brought back the 4-inch screen size due to consumer demand, they didn't bring back a 32GB variant, which has a lot of fans. Clearly the Cupertino giant only listens to you if it makes fiscal sense.
You can preorder from the Apple store from 24 March onward, with availability beginning Thursday, 31 March.
The key question is whether the iPhone SE is worth the price. Admittedly the internal specifications are similar to the powerful iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus. Apple installed the blazingly fast A9 chip and a 12-megapixel iSight camera that can take Live Photos and 4K video. Considering that the 64GB iPhone 6S Plus with its 5.5-inch display is priced at S$1,388, I would say the current price tag of the iPhone SE is a fair price to pay.
Here's the thing though. With that price and specifications, I highly doubt if the iPhone SE will convince Android smartphone users to switch ecosystems. Current users of bigger iPhones will certainly not bite. The only people that might actually buy an iPhone SE will be those stubbornly holding on to their iPhone 5 smartphones due to the small screen.
There is an iPad Pro with a smaller 9.7-inch screen. Besides animators, illustrators and people in jobs that require sketching, I'm not sure whether the iPad Pro will appeal to those looking for a laptop replacement.
While Apple does boast of its capabilities and ultra-lightweight nature (500 grams, to be exact), I'm still not convinced that it can fully replace an ultrabook considering its small harddisk space, its rather exorbitant price (S$1,898 for a WiFi + Cellular 256GB variant) and that the A9X chip still loses out to Intel's entry level Core M chips in tests.
- iOS 9.3 is available for download now and comes with Night Shift (finally!), a new Health dashboard and password-protected Notes among other updates.
- New Apple Watch straps
- Apple Watch price reduced, an interesting move considering the company usually only reduces prices when a new version comes out, which makes me think that sales haven't been as good as it wanted it to be