The iPhone 13 launched with minimal upgrades, disappointing some hoping to see spectacular new features in this year’s Apple flagship phone. The same disappointment was echoed by some with the Apple Watch Series 7, though expectations were set by unofficial information anyway. Rumors of the next iPhone SE model didn’t help alleviate concerns of what some have called a “brain drain” inside the company, but there might be some reason why there won’t be that much of a change in Apple’s affordable iPhone next year.
The iPhone SE has always been Apple’s fallback when it comes to providing the market with a more accessible iPhone that doesn’t compromise too much on the iOS experience. More than just a throwback to older designs, the phones offered iOS in a device that will be updated for as long as the latest mainline models and sometimes even has features that some older iPhone fans have preferred. It was never about size, Apple insisted before, and the iPhone SE 2’s larger body was proof of that.
According to earlier rumors, the iPhone SE 3 won’t even get a size upgrade and will retain the same 4.7-inch LCD that the iPhone SE 2020 has, which is the same as the iPhone 8’s as well. There will be a Touch ID button as well, which some might actually prefer over Face ID. In fact, the only upgrade the phone might have is the processor, possibly an Apple A15, and compatibility with 5G networks.
That may sound disappointing, but Ross Young offers a different perspective that explains it in a more acceptable way. Next year’s iPhone SE might actually be called the iPhone SE Plus, which suggests that it is a minor upgrade over the current iPhone SE. If 5G is indeed the only notable change, it would be reasonable not to increment the model number, though Apple admittedly doesn’t call it an iPhone SE 2 anyway.
There will still be an “iPhone SE 3”, but it won’t be until 2024 before we see it. It will reportedly get a larger screen but still use LCD rather than the current OLED Apple has been using. This could make that iPhone SE more similar to the iPhone XR, which, in turn, could bring a new design to the affordable iPhone line.