Supply chain reports have claimed that Apple is currently working on a successor to the iPhone SE, seeing the device go into full production in the second quarter of this year, shipping sometime in May or June.
A new report from DigiTimes claims that Apple is working on a new iPhone SE, which could potentially be known as the iPhone SE 2. That device will come with a slightly revamped design, including a glass back that would allow for wireless charging, said the sources. To keep the device’s price down, however, Apple will likely get rid of 3D sensing in the smartphone.
“For the entry-level sector, Apple is preparing a new inexpensive smartphone similar to the iPhone SE for 2018, featuring the wireless charging functionality, but not 3D sensing,” reads the report. “The smartphone will begin mass production in the second quarter with the official launch in May or June, Lin noted.” It’s unclear what “3D sensing” is referring to, but it could be referring to the 3D sensing capabilities of a TrueDepth camera system used in Face ID on iPhone X.
Lin doesn’t specify the size of the possible entry-level iPhone for 2018, however the details do line up with previous speculation regarding an upcoming four-inch “iPhone SE 2” with a glass back. This earlier speculation, however, pegged the phone to ship in the first quarter of 2018, not the second.
Rumors about the phone first started circulating last year when China’s Economic Daily News claimed that the iPhone SE 2 would be powered by Apple’s A10 chipset and will feature upgraded Touch ID and camera modules.
Apple hasn’t refreshed the entry-level iPhone SE smartphone since the model was first launched in March 2016, though the Cupertino company did double the available storage options to 64GB and 128GB in March of last year.