If you’re praying for a follow-up to the smaller iPhone, it sounds like Apple has your back…
Is that a shrunken iPhone X? No… well, kind of. What you’re looking at, if iPhone accessories maker Olixar is to be believed, is a render of the upcoming iPhone SE 2. Indeed, you can see these cases up for preorder now on the Mobile Fun website.
That’s right: the next pint-sized iPhone looks like it will inherit looks and features from the £999 iPhone X – including a bezel-less design, Face ID unlocking and… that notch. According to the CAD designs, it will manage this in a package that’s actually slightly smaller than the current iPhone SE.
That’s quite a big deal.
But before we continue talking about the rumoured iPhone SE 2, a brief history lesson. Don’t worry, you can skip the next paragraph if you like, but honestly, it’s quite interesting.
In 2011, Samsung released the Galaxy Note: the company’s first phablet. It was seen as a niche product, too large for mass adoption. How big was it? Probably smaller than you remember – in fact, it was just 5.3in in size. Most phones are bigger than that now, including two of the available iPhones – the 8 Plus and the X. The iPhone 8 is still just 4.7in, but don’t you miss the days of those sub-4in handsets?
Some people clearly did: that’s why we were treated to the iPhone SE in 2016. But that handset is a little long in the tooth now, and Apple has shown no interest in replacing it – but that may well be about to end, and soon.
iPhone SE 2 rumours and features
So we’re pretty sure an iPhone SE 2 is coming. The question is whether there’s going to be more than one. Alongside the iPhone X lookalike mentioned above, it’s possible there will be a second one that looks more familiar to existing iPhone SE owners.
iPhone SE 2
If for some reason you can’t see the above tweet, you’re looking at a design that isn’t a million miles away from the previous model in terms of shape. In other words, it’s distinctly iPhone, with a home button, curved corners and a flat back. More excitingly, well-known Apple leaker Ben Geskin reckons we’ll see a glass case, wireless charging, and claims that mass production is underway.
What else do we know? Well, Japanese blog Macotakara reckons that the iPhone SE 2 will be waterproof and pack the same A10 chip seen in the iPhone 7 and 2018 iPad. Unfortunately, the blog also thinks that this will be the first small iPhone that does away with the 3.5 headphone jack. No real surprise given we haven’t seen one since the iPhone 6s, but disappointing all the same.
More recently, these leaked CAD renders from TigerMobiles and OnLeaks shows a clear look at what is claimed to be the device. Yes: no headphone jack:
Additionally, leaked images of manufactured screen protector appear to confirm that the phone will feature a notch.
Oh, and it’ll be smaller, of course. The last iPhone SE was 4in, so it would be reasonable to guess a similar size – although it’s worth noting that Sony’s Xperia Compact series has gone from 4.6in to 5in in the past couple of years.
iPhone SE 2 dimensions
The current iPhone SE features a 4in screen (measured diagonally), with the handset itself measuring 123.8 x 58.6mm with a thickness of 7.6mm and a weight of just 113g.
It’s possible that the new SE will be slimmed even further. It could come with an iPhone 8 thinness of 7.3mm, or it’s possible that it will be larger than iPhone 8 – analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said that Apple’s new low-cost iPhone will measure 6.1in diagonally.
iPhone SE 2 X?
According to case-maker Olixar, there will be an iPhone with SE dimensions blended with iPhone X looks. In fact, it’s slightly smaller: the CAD case design shows vital statistics of 4.8 x 2.2in, compared to the original’s 4.87 x 2.31in. If we’re really looking at a bezel-less display then you’re probably looking at screen real estate of around 5in. Not bad at all.
This could mean that one of the leaks is wrong (and both leakers have good track records), or there will be two new iPhone SEs. It’s possible, in fact, that the X SE (very much a working title) will come out alongside the iPhone 11, while the SE could come out sooner like the originals.
iPhone SE 2 release date
This isn’t clear, but indications are that the phone might be released sometime later in 2018.
First off, the Eurasian regulatory database has 11 filings for a mystery Apple device. That may sound like a lot of filings, but bear in mind each one could relate to a slightly different configuration (storage, colour and so on) and it doesn’t seem so odd. In the past, such listings have come around two months ahead of launch – but June’s WWDC 2018 passed with no announcement for the SE 2.
In the past, iPhones have traditionally been released at the September event, and logically that would be the next point to look towards. Analysts, however, are split, with some pointing to a September release and others wondering whether it would be released at all given that Apple is already working on three other phone models.
Of course, if there are two new iPhone SEs on the way, it’s possible that they will be released side by side with the iPhone 11 in September. The X-style model could be held until a later date, though. We’ll just have to wait and see.
Is it possible though, that this new model will be a lower-priced model launched in an attempt to break into the low-end phone market in China and India.
iPhone SE 2 price
A report in Taiwan’s Economic Daily News claims that Wistron, one of Apple’s manufacturers, will be building the iPhone SE 2. Buried in the report is an indication of price: cheaper than the iPhone 7, but more expensive than the original iPhone SE.
The report hints at $450 (~£326). Even taking the lack of sales tax (with VAT, that would bring it up to £391), I’d be very surprised if Apple went in that low – UK prices usually correlate with US, so $450 means £450 – but fingers crossed that a lower price is on the cards.