Why there is no Apple iPhone SE2

Apple's 4-inch iPhone SE
Apple’s 4-inch iPhone SE

Brett Arends for MarketWatch:

Apple’s new iPhone SE2 is stunning. The slim, elegant successor to the defunct SE clocks in at less than 5 inches long and 2 1/2 inches wide. It’s 40% smaller and lighter than the flagship iPhones, the XR and XS Max. But thanks to the new edge-to-edge design, this pocketable little phone still boasts a screen size of around 5 inches.

The only problem? The iPhone SE2, alas, doesn’t actually exist…

Frank Gillett, a technology expert at Forrester Research, says… surveys have found an estimated 15% of the population want a smartphone with a screen of 5 inches or less.

But he says he hasn’t heard any rumors of a smaller iPhone in the pipeline, and he isn’t holding out too hope. The reason? Economics.

If 15% of the population say they want a small phone, probably only about 10% would actually buy one, he suggests. “Apple really built itself on scale,” he says. “They don’t like 10%.” As people now typically replace their phones every three years, the actual size of the potential market probably just isn’t big enough for Apple, he adds.

MacDailyNews Take: Yup.

We’d hazard a guess that if 4-inch iPhones were off-the-charts popular, Apple would have a modern X-class iPhone the size of the SE’s case on the market. — MacDailyNews, February 28, 2019

If the iPhone SE sold well enough, Apple would have paid more attention to it. Obviously, it did not sell well enough.MacDailyNews, July 22, 2019

According to none other than Ming-Chi Kuo, in 2020, Apple will sell three new 5G iPhones featuring 5.4-, 6.1-, and 6.7-inch OLED displays. That 5.4-inch display should fit in quite the compact iPhone body, satisfying many who’d like a smaller one-handed iPhone. — MacDailyNews, August 27, 2019

14 Comments

  1. I think there will be an “SE2” because of recently released iPod touch (A10 Fusion). No one saw that one coming. There’s no new iPod touch, if it didn’t share design and dev costs with new iPhone SE.

    History… 5th gen iPod touch (A5) released about same time as iPhone 5 (A6). 6th gen iPod touch (A8) released a few months before iPhone SE (A9). Now that new iPod touch released just a few months ago. My guess is new iPhone SE will sport A12 Bionic, just like brand new iPad mini.

    And like the new (old school) iPod touch and iPad mini, it’ll just be called iPhone SE. And externally, it’ll look and feel just like previous version. With a Home button and headphones jack. Apple needs a low cost phone model that is actually low cost.

  2. I’m guessing Apple wants to sell larger-sized iPhones and most people aren’t willing to pay what Apple wants to charge for a smaller iPhone. Apple seems like it’s on a slippery slope by only going after the high-end market while being called the iPhone Company. Such a tiny market isn’t going to satisfy investors. Apple simply isn’t making enough revenue nowadays and they need to do something about that. Selling just high-end iPhones isn’t going to cut it. I hate to see Apple’s iPhone business become so badly eroded as consumers give up on buying iPhones mainly due to their high cost.

    1. 200+M iPhone units per year is not a “tiny market,” magnificentseven48. I agree that over the long term Apple cannot continue to count on the iPhone to generate the bulk of its revenues and profits. But Apple does have several other profitable products and services which are growing YoY.

      How can you possibly back up your statement that “Apple simply isn’t making enough revenue nowadays…”? Apple continues to generate huge revenues and massive profits at this time.

  3. I might add, Apple has never seen what actual sales would be for the iPhone SE. Put current chips in it when the other iPhones are announced and I bet you would see a very big jump in sales. I want the most current specs but in the SE size.

  4. Strange, my own poll is clearly not conclusive but I am surprised by how many SE iPhones I see despite it being defunct. Seems quite a large market to ignore. That said a 5.4 inch phone with edge to edge if decently priced will probably buy off many of those like me who refuse to go big and would look elsewhere if not given an acceptable option. I would have to have it in my hand to make a final decision mind.

  5. I’m going to continue to have a phone that’s less than 5″ long.
    The only question is who will be the manufacturer.
    I’ll go back to a candy bar basic phone or flip phone if I need to.
    I would greatly prefer an SE2 though, and pay $1000 for it

  6. I”m on my 2nd SE. Not everyone wants a huge screen. I have my 27″ iMac at work, and another 27″ at home, and big iPad. Can go to those if I need a big screen. I just want the SE to fit in any pocket.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.