We examine the latest information, leaks and rumours about the iPhone SE 2’s release date, tech specs and price
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If you prefer your iPhones on the smaller and cheaper side, then you may be pleased to hear that rumours are pointing to a new version of the iPhone SE launching in 2018.
Want to know more? In our iPhone SE 2 rumours article, we collect and analyse the clues, hints and evidence pointing to the release date of Apple’s follow-up to the iPhone SE, as well as the iPhone SE 2’s tech specs, design, new features and UK pricing – so you’ve come to the right place!
This page will be updated whenever new information emerges relating to the launch of an updated iPhone SE, so check back regularly for the latest iPhone SE 2 rumours. For buying advice related to the current range, take a look at our roundup of the best iPhone SE deals as well as our iPhone buying guide.
iPhone SE 2 release date
The original iPhone SE was announced in March 2016, but it didn’t get a significant update in 2017. (It just got a bump in storage to 32- and 128GB.) Instead, it’s looking like the iPhone SE will get an update in spring 2018, with March looking most likely. Find out more about the next Apple event here.
A FocusTaiwan report in August suggested that the new iPhone SE will launch in the first quarter of 2018. Sources claim this new iPhone will be manufactured in India by Wistron, the company that puts together the current iPhone SE.
The prediction was backed up by a report by the Taiwanese market research company TrendForce, which also believes the iPhone SE 2 is coming in 2018 (although the firm is less confident, specifying only the first half), and being assembled by Wistron in India. And in Feb 2018 the Taiwan Electronic Times (via the Chinese-language site MyDrivers) predicted an iPhone SE 2 launch in March, albeit with minimal design changes from the SE.
Will the iPhone SE be discontinued?
However, this is all assuming the iPhone SE will get an update. Several analysts have suggested that there won’t be a new iPhone SE at all.
In January 2018 Ming-Chi Kuo wrote a research note arguing that Apple had “used up its development resources” and would not be able to produce a new SE for the spring launch window.
“The announcement of three new iPhone models in the same quarter in the second half of 2017 was the first time Apple made such a major endeavour,” he wrote.
“We believe the delay of iPhone X, which had the most complicated design yet, shows that Apple doesn’t have enough resources available for development. With three new models in the pipeline for the second half of 2018, we believe Apple may have used up its development resources.”
And back in July 2017 China’s Huaquang Research analyst Pan Juitang predicted that Apple wouldn’t update its 4in phone, arguing that there isn’t enough demand for smaller devices as many consumers opt for larger displays for watching movies, playing games and browsing the web. The vast majority are accustomed to 5in or bigger displays, he added.
iPhone SE2 availability
Even if the SE is updated, it may not launch where you live. Some reports suggest that the new SE handset might not be available everywhere.
According to the Economic Daily, a Chinese-language site, Apple is working on a low-end iPhone codenamed Hangzhou. This low-end, lower-priced model will apparently be launched in an attempt to “seize the low-end market” in China and India.
That report suggests that this low-end model could launch in the second half of 2018.
Another report claims that the SE2 will launch in India prior to launching in other territories. This sounds dubious to us, although it might fit with Apple’s plans to offer a cheaper handset to certain territories (normally Apple does this by offering an older version of the iPhone to certain countries).
iPhone SE 2 price
The iPhone SE is currently available in 32GB and 128GB versions. In the UK the 32GB model costs £379; 128GB is £479. (For comparison, in the US the iPhone SE costs $399 for 32GB and $449 for 129GB.)
We expect the iPhone SE 2 to be similarly priced when it launches.
iPhone SE 2 design
While the iPhone SE looks similar to the iPhone 5S, there is an expectation that the iPhone SE 2 will look more like the iPhone 8, although it is expected to have smaller dimensions.
One thing that is likely to change is the colour options.
The iPhone SE is currently available in Silver, Gold, Space Grey and Rose Gold options. The iPhone SE 2 is likely to be available in Silver, Gold, and Space Grey – like the iPhone 8. The Rose Gold and Gold version have kind of merged in the iPhone 8 and it is likely that the new iPhone SE will also offer this new brassier Gold colour option rather than two gold options.
It may also feature a glass back – allowing for wireless charging, a feature introduced with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X. This could mean the new iPhone SE 2 will look more like the all-glass iPhone 4.
There are theories that the iPhone SE 2 could have an all-screen design, like the iPhone X; many publications and analysts are referring to it as the iPhone X SE. However, while this is something that could appear in the future, we think it will be some time before the home-button-free design makes its way down to the entry-level iPhone.
That hasn’t stopped one illustrator imagining what it could look like. In the YouTube video below you can see what the iPhone SE2 might look like if Apple was to give it an iPhone X-like redesign.
Here’s a idea of what we could expect from Concept Creator.
iPhone SE 2 dimensions
Currently the iPhone SE has a 4in screen (that’s 4 inches measured diagonally). The handset itself measures 123.8mm by 58.6mm and it’s 7.6mm thick. It weighs 113g.
The new iPhone SE dimensions may slim down further. For example, the phone might be as thin as the iPhone 8 at 7.3mm. If Apple was to ditch the iPhone 5s-esque design for the iPhone SE, in favour of mimicking the iPhone 8 design, this could be feasible.
It’s also possible that the new iPhone SE – or entry-level iPhone – won’t be a smaller handset at all. According to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple is working on a low-cost version of the iPhone that will feature an LCD-TFT screen, fewer pixels, and will cost between $649 and $749. This iPhone screen will measure 6.1in diagonally so the new handset could be even larger than the iPhone 8 is.
iPhone SE 2 screen
As per KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo’s theory, Apple could introduce a 6.1in LCD-TFT screen on its new low-cost iPhone, while the other iPhones will feature OLED screens like the iPhone X does now. Shown below.
There has also been a suggestion that the iPhone SE could have a 4.2in screen rather than the current 4in. The extra .2in being made possible by reducing the size of the bezels. Although unlike the iPhone X, which has a screen that stretches to the base of the phone – and thus no Home Button (read about the iPhone X here) – the Home Button is expected to remain on the iPhone SE 2.
The new iPhone SE won’t be a flagship, so you shouldn’t expect any totally new features – it’s more a question of which features will trickle down from the top-end iPhone X and 8 Plus.
This is the biggie, and if we are looking at an iPhone SE with Face ID it would imply that we’re also getting an edge-to-edge screen and no Home button.
Ming-Chi Kuo the ‘iPhone X SE’ will indeed get Face ID, the same controversial but impressive biometric tech as on the iPhone X, which also means Animoji and, we presume, Portrait Mode on front-facing selfies. (Oddly enough, since the analyst predicts a single camera lens on the rear of the X SE to keep costs down, we could end up in the situation where Portrait Mode is available on front- but not rear-facing shots.)
The new iPhone SE 2 could offer wireless charging thanks to the rumoured glass back. Tekz24 claims that it received a tip from a “very reliable source” that the new iPhone SE 2 “will have a glass back panel” and that it “might support wireless charging.”
Apple’s 3D Touch screen tech has been around for a while, and it feels logical to add it to the SE. But sources say this will not be the case: Ming-Chi Kuo has given it the thumbs down. As Tech Times observes, this runs the risk of the feature being seen “as nothing more than a gimmick that only customers who purchase the more expensive iPhones may enjoy
iPhone SE 2 specs
According to a Tekz24 report (on which the FocusTaiwan report mentioned above was based), the new iPhone SE 2 will offer an A10 Fusion chip (as seen in the iPhone 7). It currently offers an A9 chip, as used in the iPhone 6S.
In addition we could see a 7Mp FaceTime camera with Retina Flash replace the 5MP FaceTime camera in the current model.
Other than that, it is likely to keep many of the features of the current iPhone SE, such as:
- 12MP camera: The current SE offers 12-megapixels with an ƒ/2.2 aperture.The iPhone 8 has an ƒ/1.8 aperture.
- No bump: One key difference between the iPhone SE and 8 is the lack of camera bump on the bigger model. Hopefully the new iPhone SE camera on the back of the iPhone will also be flat.
- 2GB RAM: The iPhone SE already offers 2GB RAM and it’s unlikely that we’d see any more than that.
- 32GB or 128GB storage options.
The battery will also have a slightly raised rating from 1640mAh to 1700mAh.
You may also be interested in our iPad Pro 2 rumours.