Apple should not launch a new iPhone SE this year

The 2020 iPhone SE is an excellent budget smartphone with plenty of power and a good camera. Now a new SE model is to follow soon. atechbook editor Adrian Mühlroth does not think this is a good idea.

When Apple introduced the iPhone SE 2020, the market was in turmoil. An iPhone that competes in price with mid-range Android smartphones, but delivers significantly more power? That didn’t exist before. Since then, the SE has been a good option for buyers who lack the money for a high-end iPhone. Now Apple wants to build on this success. However, the next “budget” iPhone could be a flop – at least for customers.

The next iPhone SE is not really “new”

According to market analyses, the next iPhone SE will be similar to the current SE model from 2020. It will continue to be located in the mid-range in order to lure buyers away from the Android competition with a competitive price.

Industry insider Ross Young writes in a tweet that the next SE will get the name suffix “Plus”. Although this name has stood for the larger version of an iPhone in the past, such as the iPhone 8 Plus with a 5.5-inch display, the size of the iPhone SE Plus remains exactly the same. Accordingly, even the 4.7-inch LCD panel from the predecessor is to be found in it. According to Young, the only new features are 5G capability and the current A15 Bionic, which can also be found in the iPhone 13 models.

Young has a 100 percent accuracy record, according to the Apple Tracker site. The site tracks whether individual leaker rumors and predictions come true to derive credibility. All nine of Young’s predictions have been correct so far. The market analysts from “TrendForce”, according to “Apple Track” with 77 percent accuracy, expect the launch of the iPhone SE Plus as early as in the first quarter of 2022. However, instead of anticipation, incomprehension rather spreads in me.

Continue reading All the information about the iPhone SE Plus and iPhone SE 3.

iPhone SE Plus – just a gap filler?

Putting aside the fact that Apple’s “Plus” has always stood for a larger model – not a few improvements – I don’t think much of the iPhone SE Plus. True, the company is known for introducing iPhones every year, often with only marginal changes. However, this formula only makes sense for high-end iPhones – not for the cheaper SE. Apple should keep the intervals longer and bring more innovations in return.

That could also have been the original plan. Because there was actually supposed to be a completely new iPhone SE 3 in 2023. However, the actual successor to the iPhone SE 2020 is now supposed to follow in 2024 and have a design based on the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13. That means thinner display edges, notch or hole punch and no more home button. The SE 3 could come in two sizes – 5.7 inches and 6.1 inches – but rely on an LCD panel instead of OLED. So is the iPhone SE Plus just a stopgap until the actual successor arrives?

A money printing machine for Apple …

From Apple’s point of view, a new iPhone SE, again only minimally adapted, is a cash cow. The company hardly has to put any money into developing new components, since the parts like the case, display, circuit boards, etc. are still available from the iPhone 8. So far, it is actually only clear that the SE Plus will get 5G and the A15 Bionic. Further changes are hardly possible if the iPhone is to have the same form factor as the iPhone 8 and iPhone SE 2020. There is no room for a bigger battery or additional cameras in it.

My guess is that Apple wants to try to attract owners of budget and mid-range Android smartphones with the SE Plus with 5G capability. Samik Chatterjee, industry analyst at J.P. Morgan, predicts that the next iPhone SE could attract more than a billion Android users.

… rather disappointing for customers, however.

Such an iPhone would be rather disappointing for paying customers. Not only would they get an iPhone whose design will soon be five years old. They also won’t get many of the advantages of the higher-priced iPhones. These include multiple cameras, excellent screens and long battery runtimes. Because 5G and a faster chip are not a reason to buy a new iPhone SE in my eyes. 5G is only in its infancy in countries like Germany, so it’s hardly a reason to spend extra money on it. And a faster chip is useful, but by no means necessary. Most users will hardly notice a difference to the A13 Bionic in the iPhone SE 2020 on the small 4.7-inch display with only 60 hertz.

That is ultimately the crux of the matter. Those who want to buy a cheap iPhone now can still reach for the iPhone SE 2020. The device is regularly available for just over the 400 euro mark and gets all the features that the iPhone SE Plus is supposed to offer – apart from 5G. In my opinion, it would be better if Apple did without an SE in 2022 and used the resulting free resources to develop a “real” successor in the form of the iPhone SE 3.


  • TrendForce
  • Reuters