The iPhone SE was Apple’s first “budget” smartphone, and another rendition of it called the iPhone 9, or iPhone SE 2, maybe turning out this spring.
We’re awaiting official news of a heavily-rumoured new “affordable” Apple smartphone, but in the meantime, more rumours hav emerged about the existence of the phone and its surprisingly low price.
Sources speaking to Fast Company have confirmed that Apple is currently gearing up production for its new, cheaper iPhone, which will reportedly be released in March.
It was also re-confirmed by one of the sources that this new iPhone will cost around $400 USD, which is aiming to help Apple compete in China. The lower cost will also benefit the company in countries like India, and hopefully also in the US, UK, and Canada for users who are looking for a more affordable handset.
It’s expected that the iPhone 9 will be based on the iPhone 8’s body, with a 4.7-inch display, far smaller than the full-screen iPhones we’ve seen starting with the iPhone X and most recently the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro.
While the iPhone 9 will be visually similar, this won’t be an obsolete device. It’s rumored to have Apple’s latest A13 Bionic CPU running the show, plus it may come in two different sizes, with the larger version possibly coming with a new kind of power button-mounted Touch ID sensor.
From the Fast Company report:
The new low-priced phone is expected to take a similar, scaled-back approach. It’ll very likely rely on components Apple has been using for years, like the fingerprint reader built into the physical home button. The new phone probably won’t use the Face ID facial recognition technology, which involves a relatively expensive laser chip and sensor. Apple will be able to cut costs by reusing a phone design, possibly one borrowed from the iPhone 8. The new phone is expected to have a 4.9-inch display.
As Apple makes its services more of a priority, having an affordable entryway into iOS is a must. Last year, Apple revamped its iPod touch and iPad mini, which aside from updated processors, are otherwise both exactly the same as they were in 2015. But that new processor allowed people to run iOS 13 along with Apple Arcade, Apple News+, and Apple TV+.
An iPhone 9 would be an affordable way for people to get into those services and keep using them longer than an iPhone 8 would. Theoretically, packing a budget phone with new or current internals would allow you two more years of use.