So I’m hiking with my brother-in-law and, while navigating a steep slope, I slip and land on my hands. The impact didn’t feel that terrible, I’ve honestly had harder falls in my own front yard. But I just so happen to have my treasured Iphone SE in my hand. And the damn thing shattered. I was upset, my perfectly functioning $70 ebay find was now badly cracked. I can’t tell you how much I loved that phone, its tiny profile fit perfectly into the palm of my hand and was ideal for jogging. Unfortunately, that ideal hand size also meant I was more prone to palming it everywhere rather than putting it in my damn pocket!
I ordered a replacement screen for it. I had done this sort of repair before, once on a 5c and another time on a 3s. But, alas, the process broke me. The screws are so damn small and the my patience is only so strong. I was 45 minutes into fumbling around with the parts when I finally gave up – recognizing that my labor hours had far exceeded the value of the phone. My mind had also started to ponder if I could get a better value on ebay again. It was this exploration that was unique, for the timing of my phones demise paralleled the release of the SE2020. Oddly enough, the quantity of SE 1st gen phones had gone down since my purchase on ebay. Getting a 64gb in that same price range was difficult. I could have gotten a 32 gb for $30, but decided going down in memory was the wrong direction. After a week of stalking SEs, I finally resigned myself to looking elsewhere.
Then, the thought hit me. My brother-in-law, who’s hike invoked my phone’s demise, was a notorious iphone user. I remember that he had just upgraded to the 11, which meant his old phone was likely sitting around in a junk drawer. I called him up and asked him if he would sell it – he said yes! He had a 6s 128gb, which I was a bit reluctant to buy at first. But when he took $50, I couldn’t really find fault in the decision. At that price, its hard to critique a phone purchase. The phone was case kept and was like new. The battery health was at 78%. I had no issues using it, and it ran find under IOS 13.
I reflected on this in terms of market consumption. Had I gone out and gotten the new 2020 SE, I’d be set back a modest $350. Sure, that phone has a better camera and processor. But this phone is the same size, with the same OS, and performs fantastic with all the stuff I use it for. This cost me $50, I saved a great phone from a future land fill journey, and I am utilizing it to my fullest potential. I sound like a broken record at times, but I cant find any fault in using 3-4 year old tech. Why break the bank on a new phone – which will likely include an insurance plan, when you can swoop up other people’s discards and capitalize on THEIR wanton consumption. I don’t need a $69 Apple insurance plan. When my old iphone breaks, I can go get another for the same (or lower) price. That’s not just good sense, it’s good cents!