The iPhone SE — an Elegant Smartphone, for a More Civilized Age →

April 2, 2016 · 08:21

John Gruber:

If you’ve already upgraded to an iPhone 6 or 6S and have made peace with the trade-offs of a larger, heavier, less-grippy-because-of-the-round-edges form factor, the appeal is less clear. Me, I talk the talk about preferring the smaller form factor, but ultimately I’m a sucker for top-of-the-line CPU/GPU performance and camera quality. For the next six months or so, the iPhone SE stands on the top tier. After that, it won’t — I think — and it’ll be back to the 4.7-inch display form factor for me. So why bother switching back for just a few months? I keep asking myself.
And then I pick up the iPhone SE, and hold it in my hand.

Sometimes, it’s what’s in your heart that’s important, despite your head telling you otherwise.

John also mentions how many errors he now makes while typing on the 4″ virtual keyboard — I remember I was great at typing on that screen until I moved to the iPhone 6 and later to the iPhone 6S Plus. When I tried to use the small keyboard a few months after making the switch to the 4.7″ screen, I found I was abysmal at typing on it.

‘The iPhone SE Is Apple’s Hotrod’ →

March 31, 2016 · 13:02

Jim Dalrymple:

Look at the iPhone SE like this.

Pick your favorite classic car. An old Corvette or Mustang—whatever your favorite car is. That design will always be classic, no matter what has happened in the automobile industry in the last 40 years, those 1960s designs will always be classic.

Now, take that classic car design and replace the engine, drive train, and everything else you can think of. What do you have? A hotrod. An incredible classic design with the most advanced technology that you could put in it.

That is the iPhone SE. A classic design with a lot of the newest and greatest technology.

The iPhone SE is Apple’s classic hotrod.

Thoughts on iPhone SE, iPad Pro 9.7”, and Apple’s March 2016 ‘Let Us Loop You in’ Event

March 26, 2016 · 10:15

A lot of people are not pleased with the fact that Apple ‘only’ unveiled a new 4” iPhone, another iPad, and a few Apple Watch bands. Personally, I don’t have anything negative to say about the hardware, but what I really miss is the surprise. The leaks in the weeks before any Apple event in recent years are both a blessing and a curse — while I can’t stop myself from following the rumours, they totally spoil the event. It’s as if I’d gone to see ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ on opening night, knowing the whole plot. In 2012, during D10, Tim Cook promised Kara Swisher and Walk Mossberg to ‘double down on secrecy’ — I’m still waiting for him to deliver.
Continue reading →

iPhone SE — Better Battery Life Than a 6S →

March 25, 2016 · 07:58

Geoffrey A. Fowler:

The standout news is battery life. Unlike many other recent Apple products, the iPhone SE’s is a significant improvement over its predecessors’. In my lab stress test, which cycles through websites with uniform screen brightness, the SE lasted 10 hours—more than two hours longer than both the iPhone 6s and iPhone 5s, and nearly three hours longer than the Galaxy S7.

This is huge! I’m so tempted…

iPhone SE Design ‘Identical’ to 5S, Will iPhone 6S Camera →

March 18, 2016 · 19:19

Mark Gurman:

Checks with additional sources indicate that the iPhone SE, to be launched at Apple’s March 21st event next week, will look “almost exactly the same” as the iPhone 5s…

This means the phone will include a boxier, not curved, design complete with rounded volume buttons, a power button on the top, a headphone jack, speaker, and microphone on the bottom, and a back with a metal center and a glass bottom and top. We previously reported that the only easily apparent difference would be the product’s edges. There have been mixed reports regarding the look of the new edges, and sources say that while the front edges could be “very slightly” curved, the potential change is not noticeable. Regardless, the iPhone SE’s edges will be less shiny and likely lose the shiny mirror finish that helped make the iPhone 5s prone to scratches.

The other hardware differences are internal: an A9 processor, an M9 chip for always-on “Hey Siri” support, an NFC chip for Apple Pay, and upgrades to the cellular and WiFi hardware. We have now also learned that the device’s rear camera system will match the system found on the iPhone 6s: the iPhone SE is said to include a 12 megapixel camera and 4K video recording support like the upcoming smaller iPad Pro. We previously reported the ability to take Live Photos is also in the mix.

What I don’t understand is how the camera system can match the 6S if the lens will be flush with the case. I assume it will be ‘close enough’ but slightly inferior… unless they managed to make a huge jump in lens design.

However good or bad the camera in the SE will be, I wonder how Apple will word it.

iPhone 5SE and iPad Air 3 Reportedly Available for Purchase on March 18 →

February 14, 2016 · 14:22

Mark Gurman:

Apple is currently planning to introduce a new 4-inch iPhone dubbed the “iPhone 5se” and a new iPad Air at an event on Tuesday, March 15th, then put the products up for sale online and in retail stores as early as Friday, March 18th, according to sources. Apple is unlikely to offer pre-orders for the new devices, according to sources who cautioned that the plans could still change.

I would love for the products to be available for purchase on the day of their announcement. Basically I want Tim Cook, Phil Schiller, or whoever is up on stage at the time to say: ‘Available… today.’

By the way, for those asking: I’m not buying the new iPhone 5SE nor the iPad Air 3 — my 6S Plus and iPad Pro are doing fine.

Three Sources Claim Apple Event on March 15 →

February 3, 2016 · 09:42

Mark Gurman:

Apple is currently aiming to unveil the new 4-inch the iPhone 5se, the iPad Air 3, and new Apple Watch band options at an event on Tuesday, March 15th, according to sources.

John Paczkowski posted his own take a few hours later, confirming the event, and so did Matthew Panzarino.

The new band lines will include multiple new colors for the rubberized Sport bands, new Hermès bands, a ‘space black’ version of the Milanese Loop, and an entirely new band line made of a new material. Supply chain sources indicate that Apple has been testing a series of “high-quality” NATO-style nylon bands for the Apple Watch, but we have not confirmed that this is indeed the new line launching in March.

Mark was the only one of the trio who commented specifically on the new Apple Watch things we can expect. I’m quite interested in the NATO-style bands, as well as a Space Black Milanese Loop for more formal occasions.

iPhone 5SE Reported to Have Faster A9/M9 Chips →

January 25, 2016 · 18:18

Mark Gurman:

Because the iPhone 7 will include a faster chip potentially known as the A10 processor, Apple likely does not want its new 4-inch iPhone to fall two processor generations behind in just six months. Another benefit of the M9 chip from the iPhone 6s is always-on Siri activation. This feature allows a user to say “Hey Siri” and launch Siri on their iPhone without the device being plugged in. Given the large performance leap, we are told that the “5se” will likely replace the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in the iPhone lineup this fall when the iPhone 7 is introduced. This means that Apple’s fall 2016 iPhone lineup will likely be the iPhone 5se, iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, and the future iPhone 7 and 7 Plus (or what Apple ends up calling the next-generation devices).

While the ‘5SE’ sounds nostalgic to me, it suggests the phone is three generations behind the iPhone 7 — or rather will be. Reportedly.

4-Inch iPhone Will Reportedly Be Called ‘iPhone 5se’ →

January 24, 2016 · 13:02

Mark Gurman:

The new device is internally codenamed “N69,” but the launch name will likely be the “iPhone 5se.” The “se” suffix has been described in two ways by Apple employees: as a “special edition” variation of the vintage 4-inch iPhone screen size and as an “enhanced” version of the iPhone 5s. Indeed, the upcoming “5se” features a design similar to 2013’s flagship but upgraded internals, software, and hardware features that blend the old design with modern technologies from the past two iPhone upgrades.

Mark also provides a list of upgrades over the 5S, which includes confusing statements. If the chamfered edges indeed go away in favour of curved glass (as seen on the newer iPhones), will the back edges also go away? Or will the design change more than is evident, so that everything is more consistent?

Gurman also reports that the 5SE will have an Apple A8 and no 3D Touch, but it will have Live Photos. That is not unheard of, since they can be easily viewed on iPads and Macs, but what about the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus? Will these also receive this feature with an iOS update?

I’m curious as to what will happen to the lineup when the iPhone 7 comes out too. Will the 6 and 6 Plus be discontinued, or will they still be sold at a lower price point? It will be interesting to see what Apple does, as they introduce a new line-up this Autumn.