My iPhone SE

This Sunday I activated my latest iPhone, a space-gray 64GB iPhone SE.

I’ve actually been hanging onto my old phone for an uncommonly long time. It was an iPhone 5, with scratches on the glass and a connector that was losing its ability to connect, making every night’s charging a dicey proposition. But I’d held out for one important, fundamental reason: size.

I’ll admit what Donald Trump won’t—I have fairly small hands. Specifically, I have a wider hand with compact digits, what the golf glove industry calls “cadet” dimensions (which always makes me feel like I’m 14 when I buy a new glove, but oh well).

Golf glove sizing, from

You can guess what someone with hands like the one on the right might feel about an oversized smartphone. I didn’t even like it when the iPhone graduated to 4″ from 3.5″, because it became somewhat hard for my thumbs to reach the top row of icons. I regularly use my device one-handed, so the iPhone 6 and 6S were not what I wanted.

The SE, on the other, um, hand, is exactly what I wanted. Updated hardware, updated features, and still the compact size that I could palm with ease. The design may not be as slim as the 6, and its longevity makes it feel a little bit dated, but it’s also a near-perfect design execution, and not at all something I mind re-upping.

And, of course, the SE delivers: fast, easy, familiar performance that embodies a good upgrade. The battery life is phenomenal, too—I’m on an every-other-day charge cycle so far, which I haven’t achieved since, I think, my iPhone 3GS. Hanging onto my phone far past the standard replacement cycle makes me appreciate it that much more.

It’s been a great buy for me, and I’m glad Apple saw fit to release it.

I also picked up a Ringke Snug-Fit case for the SE. I need a case—my kids are clumsy, and so am I—but as a pocket-carrying user, I need a slim one. The Ringke is nearly identical to my previous Case-Mate Barely There, but it’s actually a little smaller (albeit lacking the shock absorption that the Case-Mate includes). By making my new phone just a touch thinner, my phone feels that much newer, and for all of $9.99. So make that two happy purchases, not one.