What is The Best iPhone For A Beginner? My 2 Cents…

If you’re new to smartphones, you might be wondering what the best iPhone is for beginners? Here’s my 2 cents on the subject…

If you’ve never used an iPhone before. Or you’re looking at picking up your first smartphone, an iPhone is a great choice because they’re designed to be simple, they have the best ecosystem, and the phones themselves are very simple to run and operate on a day-to-day basis.

Apple now makes quite a few different iPhone models, however, so what is the best iPhone to get if you’re a total beginner? Let’s take a look at all the current options based on different potential types of users…

Best iPhone For Beginners…

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If You Want 5G, Get iPhone 12 or iPhone 12 Mini

If you want to future-proof your next phone, it is worth getting a 5G-capable iPhone. And when it comes to 5G-capable iPhones, the ONLY options you have right now are Apple’s iPhone 12 range.


All of Apple’s iPhone 12 lineup feature 5G, as well as OLED displays. If you get a 5G iPhone, you’re basically sorted for the next several years. So while they are more expensive than the iPhone 11, you won’t need to update the phone for at least five to six years – Apple’s iPhones last A LONG time.

If that sounds like what you want, go with either the iPhone 12 or the iPhone 12 Mini. These are the cheapest options inside the iPhone 12 range. If you want a more premium experience, go with one of the Pro models, either the Pro or Pro Max. But be warned: Apple’s Pro models are pretty expensive.

Where To Buy? 

Not Fussed About 5G? Get The iPhone 11 Pro

If you’re not bothered about having 5G connectivity on your phone, go with the iPhone 11 Pro. Because the iPhone 11 Pro is no longer the latest model, you can pick it up on some really good deals right now.


The iPhone 11 Pro is a stunning phone with a massively powerful CPU and a great camera. For 99.9% of users, it will be more than enough phone. I currently own one and I don’t think I’d bother upgrading to the iPhone 12 Pro; I just don’t see it as enough of an update.

And you cannot get 5G where I live, so for now, I’m holding onto my EPIC iPhone 11 Pro.

Why To Buy? 

Want A Small iPhone? Get The iPhone 12 Mini

If you want a small iPhone, the ONLY option worth getting is the iPhone 12 Mini – it is the smallest iPhone it has created in years. In fact, it is so small, it is closer in size to Apple’s iPhone 4s than its iPhone 12.


And because it is part of the iPhone 12 range, you get full support for 5G and things like an OLED display, as well as Apple’s latest CPU, the A14. The iPhone 12 Mini is an utter powerhouse. And as we noted inside or iPhone 12 Mini Review, the phone is one of the strongest members of Apple’s iPhone 12 lineup.

If you want a potent, but small phone, the iPhone 12 Mini is a no brainer. It looks stunning, it runs the same specs and hardware as the larger iPhone 12, and it will get iOS updates until well into the late-2020s. I honestly adore this phone. But mostly because of its size. I miss having genuinely good small phone options…

Where To Buy? 

Want A Cheap iPhone? Get The iPhone SE 2020

If you want a cheap iPhone, you have a couple of options: 1) get the iPhone SE 2020; it is currently the cheapest iPhone Apple sells – you can pick one up for $399.99. Or, 2) get yourself a

refurbished iPhone (you’ll save 40% doing this).

iPhone SE 2020 ReviewPin

With a refurbished iPhone, you’re not getting a new phone but the phone will look and function as good as new. We have an entire post dedicated to refurbished iPhones, so if you need more information check that out for more details.

The iPhone SE 2020 runs on the same CPU as the iPhone 11 range, but the phone’s design is based on Apple’s iPhone 8 – it is essentially a redux of that phone, just with updated internals. Is the iPhone SE 2020 any good? Yes, it’s a solid phone and, if you don’t want FACE ID, it is a great choice because it has a home button like classic iPhones and TouchID.

For a total beginner, the iPhone SE 2020 would be a great phone. It is small enough to not be cumbersome to use, it has TouchID and a home button, so there’s no need to scan your face to use the phone, and it is cheap – you can pick one up right now for less than $400.

Where To Buy? 

Are iPhones Easy To Use?

Apple’s software, iOS, is designed to be simple to use. You have an unlimited number of potential homescreens on your iPhone and a small dock at the bottom of your display for storing your most-used apps – Mail, WhatsApp, Safari, etc.

When you download a new app, it is installed on your iPhone and is accessed from the homescreen via its icon. To open and use the app, all you have to do is click on it and the app will open. To close it, just swipe up from the bottom. As I said: iOS is designed to be super-intuitive to use. And it is; anybody, regardless of experience, will be able to pick it up inside a few hours.

Apple’s iPhones are easier to use than Android phones. And the reason for this is that ALL iPhones run the same software. If you’ve used one iPhone, you can pick up another one, regardless of the model, and it will work exactly the same. The software is always the same, regardless of the model.

Where things get slightly different is to do with how you interact with the phone itself. If you use an iPhone with a home button, the iPhone SE 2020, for instance, you use TouchID to access the phone and close apps, as well as revert back to your homescreen.

With iPhones released after the iPhone X, so, the iPhone 11, iPhone 12, and iPhone XS and iPhone XR, you use FACE ID to access your phone and there is no home button. Inside iOS, you use gestures to move around the operating system. But do not be put off by this; Apple’s gestures are really simple to remember and all new iPhones come with a detailed guide on how to use them.

My advice? If you’re a technophobe, get the iPhone SE 2020 – it is the simplest iPhone to use. If you’re not averse to learning new things and want to run a modern-day smartphone, get the iPhone 12 Mini – it is small, compact, simple to use, and it packs in all the latest features and specs, as well as full support for 5G.

Richard Goodwin

Richard Goodwin is a leading UK technology journalist with a focus on consumer tech trends and data security. Renowned for his insightful analysis, Richard has contributed to Sky News, BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio 2, and CNBC, making complex tech issues accessible to a broad audience.

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