This was posted 4 years 9 months 7 days ago, and might be an out-dated deal.

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iPhone SE 32GB (Space Grey) $449 on Telstra Prepaid with $30 Starter Kit (Telstra Locked)


Saw that Telstra now sell the iPhone SE 32gb as a prepaid phone.
Unlocking costs $80 if you do it in the first 6 months but overall cost to purchase and unlock is still only $529 vs full RRP of $679.
Link for unlocking terms/costs:

The 32gb version of the iPhone SE was only recently released so won't be old stock. Should also get full 2 year warranty from Apple.
Looks Like Space Grey colour only.

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  • +5

    Thought all iphones come unlock nowadays..
    I bought the iphone multi color few years back, it says locked to telstra and was unlocked when i tried dif sims..

    • +2

      Yeah, this ^

      I didn't think you could carrier lock an iPhone?

      • +3

        In the US, all prepaid iPhones are locked. Some are almost impossible to remove. So it's not that you can't carrier lock them, it looks like Australian telcos just haven't put the effort in it.

    • My understanding is post-paid phones can be unlocked with a phone restore through iTunes. But prepaid phones can be network locked and need to be unlocked through telstra

  • +3

    Great Deal

  • +3

    I'm currently using this phone - ask me anything if you need advice!

    So far, I'm happy with the device. Bought it because its small but I an envious of larger displays. I got used to typing on a larger S5 so it was a bit of an adjustment moving back to the smaller SE. I replaced the stock keyboard with GBoard and am happy with that change.

    If you want cases, I suggest going to Kmart as they're one of the few bricks and mortar stores that actually sell cases for this size. They're between $2 and $5 unless you want to wait a month for China shipping on eBay.

    I'm on the previous version of iOS 10.2 but haven't updated to 10.3 in fear it would reduce the performance of the phone.

    Camera is great - my current combo is take photos either through native app or in Lightroom, then edit, then share.

    • +14

      There is nothing to worry about with updates for the iPhone SE, its got the A9 chip and 2GB ram same as iPhone 6s and it just screams performance due to its smaller screen. The iOS 10.3 actually makes it faster due to apple changing to a new file system called APFS. Also if you are with Optus, the hidden bonus in 10.3 is inbuilt native wifi calling.

    • my girlfriend always finds some covers for $3 to $5 on sale at Sportsgirl for the iPhone SE…but they're not that great for men :)

      • Yep, and theres still a few hidden gems around trying to get rid of iPhone 5 cases (exact same dimensions) for $1. I bought about 5 for my wife and they are in the drawers at home :P

        • +1

          same !!!! new covers are all sitting in a cupboard!

  • 1 or 2 years warranty?

      • thanks, thought only one year.

        • +2

          One year explicitly stated by Apple. If you make a claim under the ACL you have a warranty for as long as that product is reasonably expected to last. That's likely to be at least 24 months.

        • @simulacrum: You may be right. It's a complexed law.

      • Hang on…I know that mobile phones get 24 months warranty as many mobile phone contracts are 24 months, however I don't think you can make a statement that "All consumer electronics get 24 month warranty" — neither of your links support the statement. — mentions "12 month replacement guarantee"

        • +4

          Under section 54 of the Australian Consumer Law, all customers are entitled to a guarantee that the goods they are buying are of acceptable quality (including safety, fitness for purpose, appearance and finish and0 durability). The standard for the extent to which these qualities are to be met is the expectation of a reasonable customer, taking into account a number of factors including the price paid for the goods, the nature of the goods, any statements made about the goods by the supplier or manufacturer etc..

          Available remedies include repair, replacement or refund.

          The ACCC is the relevant regulator, and Graeme Samuels is on record stating that it is reasonable for a customer to expect a mobile phone to last at least as long as the length of the contract (typically 24 months)

  • +5

    I have the older 64 gb version of the iPhone SE.

    This is my daily driver, and I work it hard!
    Superb performance in a small package - no lag whatsoever.
    In car tems, think of a Mercedes A45 or Golf R - pocket rockets.

    Battery life excellent, and the camera is great.

    Actually enjoy the small form factor, but still get envious of all the other larger screen phones with fabulous displays.
    The display on this phone is fine, but does not wow compared to the other top line phones.

    re SugeKnight - I've updated to 10.3.1, and on my phone after the first day battery life has been fantastic - 24 hours standby and 4 hours screen on time, and still had about 30% left.
    Performance feels even faster on 10.3.1 then on 10.2, so I say go ahead and update. The only reason not to update would be if you want to jailbreak the phone.

    • +1

      Agree with all of this except for battery life (I'm on 10.3, updating to 10.3.1 now). When I use it a lot during the day, my battery tends to run flat by the end of the day - I think this has been the case since 10.2? Certainly not an improvement over my old iPhone 5.
      I also find it annoying they put in an outdated fingerprint scanner. The one on the 6s/7 is so much better you forget it's even there!
      The screen is fine but it indeed doesn't compare to its bigger iPhone brothers.
      At this price, it's a great buy!

      • Maybe have a look at if any apps are using your location or constantly updating in the background. I found that instagram was constantly updating in the background which drained a fair bit of battery.

        After tweaking location and background update settings, I take my phone off charge at 7am, I stream spotify all day at work and play a few games at lunch, check instagram and Facebook throughout the day. Usually still around 40% by the time it hits the charger again around midnight

  • Would anyone know if "locked to telstra" works on Telechoice? In the past carrier locks still worked for reseller providers?

    • Good question - I had presumed it would without even thinking, as this has been the case in the past with network locked phones.

      I'm pretty confident it will - but would love someone to buy one and report back.

    • I have bought locked Telstra phones in the past and the work on telechoice but never a iPhone

  • +1

    Can anyone confirm if this is Telstra locked?

    • Would like to know as well..

    • +2

      Can confirm Telstra locked

  • Do I need this phone? No. Am I happy with my Nexus 5X? Yes. Am I tempted to purchase this? Absolutely!!!

    • +2

      Funny, I just lost my N5X to the dreaded bootloop, and have had to use my daughter's old iP5. As a "small phone" guy, I think the 5/5s/SE is the zenith of phone design, and I'm pleasantly surprised regarding the quality of Google apps on iOS.

      So I had already kind of committed to a new SE. Would be great to have confirmation of the whole unlocking thing. And I'm already using Boost (Telstra reseller) for my prepaid.

      • I am the same. I thought it would be hard to go from 5.2 to 4 inches but I love the SE design and the price.

      • Have you tried to get it fixed with Google/LG? I'm wondering what the process is for Aussies…. My 5X is about 10 months old and I'm counting down to a boot loop…

  • +1

    Agree that iPhones aren't locked to networks so should be able to use with any carrier

  • I thought unlocking was free iPhones from Telstra?

  • +1

    Will this work with AldiMobile (while locked)?

    • +1

      most telstra locked prepaid mobile phones don't work with aldimobile

  • +4

    Pretty sure prepaid iPhones are normally locked. My experience with an old 4S (Telstra locked) was that it would not take an Aldi Mobile SIM without unlocking.

    • +2

      my telstra iphone 5s is locked as well.

  • Seeing this I have incredible buyer's remorse over getting an iPhone 7 on a Virgin plan.

  • Just a side question.

    Can anyone comment if these work with the Telstra re-sellers, Woolworths or Boost?

    I may be interested in one for a family member who needs an upgrade.

    • +1

      boost is definitely fine, not sure if it works for re-sellers

      • Excellent - from personal experience (regarding Boost)?

        • +2

          Boost is not a reseller, it uses same network id as telstra

        • @lovbargain: cheers, thanks

        • @lovbargain: Boost is a reseller, they're just paying Telstra to provide all the system-side administration and customer support for them as well, which is why phones that are locked to Telstra will work on Boost.

        • @Bronwyn Bishop:
          Yes, AKA retailer, which is different from Aldi/woolworths..

  • +3

    Contacted Telstra Live Chat, not locked apparently

    • I just chatted with Telstra, the staff said it is locked for two years. So confusing.

      • +4

        What a trainwreck

  • Having issues trying to order this, keeps failing to validate credit card details. Tried 3 different cards now

    Edit: Finally processed correctly

    • Did you do anything to fix the issue?

      • No, just kept trying. I did get sms from citibank and lattitude for 2 out of the 3 cards I tried. citibank gave me an option to reply where as lattitude simply blocked the card

  • Has anyone tried getting the apple shop to price match?

    • +2

      apple shop tends to not match prepaid iphone.

      • Ah well. Will just order from Telstra :)

  • Will OFW price match this and would they include the $30 Telstra credit?

    • +1

      Why don't you try and let all us know of the outcome !!

      • +1

        Yeah my son is looking for new phone so might give this a go this afternoon. Screen grab printed from Telstra so i will report back.

        • Cheers

        • +1

          OFW wouldn't price match as it is Telstra locked and all the phones they sell are unlocked.

        • @OzSikhs: Just also tried OFW call centre and they wouldn't price match either

    • Doubt it. They have stock of the Space Grey and the SE 32GB they sell is network unlocked. Different models mean not obligation to price match/beat.

  • +4

    Great news! Just had a chat with Telstra. They confirmed the unlock process is free.

    'Fred, you can anytime get back to us and we will submit an order to Unlock it for free, I have added the notes for the same, the reference number is xxxxxxxxxxx'

    Does anyone know if Officeworks could beat price for different color of same model? They only have silver not space grey of 32GB.

    • They might if they're nice but they wouldn't be obliged to as the different colours means different models and their T&C's state the models have to be the same.

  • +1

    Hi does anyone know if telstra shop stock this or is this only online ?

    • Just purchased one from Telstra shop. Unfortunately, small chip on the edge of the screen, so about to head back to see what I can do…

  • Is there any phone manufacturer that makes a phone similar in size to this - yet still has that top tier camera (for a tiny phone), good performance, great battery life, micro SD expansion?

    I started to miss being able to effectively use my phone with 1 hand after using the Note series for many years. The Galaxy series and iPhone 6 form factor are still a bit large to be comfortably used with 1 hand for me.

    It seems like the iPhone SE is the only phone on the market that has premium specs in this form factor (minus the micro SD card)?

    • +1

      Only the Xperia compact series AFAIK comes anywhere close.

    • I just downgraded from a Galaxy S5 (5.1") to an S5 Mini (4.6") a week ago, I'm very happy with the phone, finally I can carry it everywhere in my pocket or even in my largish wallet, and of course use the phone with one hand, and has MicroSD slot. Camera is pretty good, not the best though.

      I was tempted by the Xperia Z5 Compact but I had a Z3 Compact which had low volume and reception issues, plus I was a bit wary of the not-so-tough screen Xperias have as I'm a very active person - knocking my phones on things are common.

  • iPhone SE $449 or iPhone 6S $699?

    • +1

      There's some good pros and cons given in the comments already, take those into account and decide for yourself if you want a smaller or larger iPhone.

    • SE. Go 7 if you want bigger screen

  • Agree battery life excellent on SE. Rarely have irun out of juice. Usually end up between 30-40% left before i go to sleep. Speed impressive and same camera quality as 6s.

  • Thanks OP

  • Reached out to Telstra via Live chat. They confirmed that it is Telstra locked and it is $80 to unlock.
    So, unlock price $529. Still cheaper than buying from Apple for $679.

    • +4

      I was on Telstra website looking at this phone when chat consultant asked if I had any questions. I asked her if this iPhone SE is locked. She told me that it was unlocked. When I pointed her to the Telstra page which said that it was locked, she replied that "If you are looking for phone on a plan then it is locked."

      This completely contradicts Telstra's previous advice that iPhones on a "plan" are unlocked and only pre-paid are locked. When I pointed this out to her, she promptly passed me on to a specialist in "consult dept." This so called specialist tied himself in knots telling me contradictory things that made no sense. One moment he said that it is unlocked and the next moment locked. When I queried how much to unlock, one moment he said that it is free to unlock and the next moment I have to pay but he does not know how much.

      Because I had looked up the various Telstra links posted here by other commenters, I sought to clarify their advice. When they crossed checked they immediately reversed their positions. My conclusion is that you cannot take the words of Chat consultants as gospel truth. They know less than the average lay person who has looked things up on Telstra websites.

    • +3

      Just asked Telstra Live Chat how to unlock it and they happily did it for free right away

      • Really? Is your phone at least 2 years old? Because as per their website, unlocking is free only after 2 years.

        • Sometimes if you get the right person on live chat they'll do it for free for you. It's always worth trying but not something you should bank on because they have no obligation to do it.

        • +5

          Bought it yesterday and got it unlocked about 2 hours later

        • @jrjr: Thanks

  • +2

    Never saw network-locked version iPhones in Australia… It's hard to lock the iPhones than unlocking IMO.

  • +5

    Just checked with Jb Hi Fi. They are a Telstra dealer so also have this phone available for the same price in stores (different price showing up online) so if anyone has JB giftcards to spend (eg through Cash Rewards) this could be a better option.

    • +2

      OMG , this is such a good Idea , ive never thought about discount gift cards to buy markdown item , guessing you save extra 5% for little work

    • Where do you get discounted jb cards from? Not available at Cash Rewards.

      • +2

        You buy WISH cards at 5% off through Cash Rewards and then go use them in-store at Woolies to buy JG Hi Fi cards. I can't take credit for the idea, I got it here:

        Also it's usually possible to pick up discounted JB gift cards people want to get rid of via Gumtree or E-bay. I just bought a $399 value giftcard from someone for $350 cash and used it towards this phone!

  • Great phone. Wife wants a small phone with a better camera than the hand-me-down Nexus 5 she's currently using. Anyone know if a new one would be in the works? Hoping it had USB Type C

    • This has the standard apple connector, not USB-C

      • ie Lightning connector

  • +1

    I just copy some information from Telstra website:

    Telstra Pre-Paid mobiles (including iPhone) and mobile broadband devices are locked for use only on Telstra's network. There is a fee to have your Pre-Paid mobile phone unlocked.

    $80 for devices activated for 6 months or less, or never activated; and
    $25 for devices activated for more than 6 months up to 2 years.
    There is no unlocking fee after that.

    Means there is no fee after 2year.

  • +3

    From my experience:
    End of 2014, bought Telstra prepaid iPhone 5c 32GB from JB Hifi. It was unlocked out of box.
    March 2017, bought Telstra prepaid iPhone 5s from Telstra online store. It was locked out of box. Call up Telstra customer service, and got it unlocked for free (I am Telstra prepaid user for over 2 years now, they just did it for free).

    Conclusion: 50 - 50 chance you will get an unlocked phone. And if you get it from Telstra online store, almost 100% they will be locked to Telstra. And yes, Telstra Prepaid iPhones CAN be locked to Telstra carrier.

    • This annectdotal yet actual experience is more valuable than the guesses made by Telstra CSRs.

  • +3

    Hi, just thought I share with you my experience - i just bought one from the Telstra Shop at George Street (opposite Apple) - call the call centre to unlock and surprisingly they unlock it without any fee ! Just told me to use a non Telstra sim card and plug it to the itunes, and i should get an activation error, and after that unplug it for a few minutes and plug it back in and I should get an unlock iphone.

    Havent tried that yet since I am at work but so far so good.

    • I bought mine as well but they said 48 hours?? still not activating when I plug it into itunes…

      • +1

        When they unlock my 5s prepaid, i was told the unlock is immediate, and there is no need to plug into itunes. Just put any active 3rd party SIM into it and it will work. I tried mine using my partners amaysim, and it works brilliantly. You may give that a try

        • +1

          I can confirm that these can be unlocked for free by Telstra. I purchased two today from JB Hi Fi and rang Telstra, go them unlocked, THEN put put in Vodafone sim, turned them on for the first time, connected to wifi and unlock worked. Now on Kogan Extra Large plan for $1 this month on both phones

        • @motef:

          all sorted thanks mate. Great price for this phone

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