If you can get the same performance as aFor almost half the price, don’t you think it’s worth getting? According to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple may cancel the next version of the iPhone SE compatible with the wallet, which was expected to arrive next year.
“The supply chain has received instructions from Apple indicating that production and shipping plans for the 2024 iPhone SE 4 have been canceled rather than delayed,” Kuo wrote in a Medium post on Jan. 6.
If Kuo’s predictions are correct, only Apple knows the reason behind the cancellation. But research and media reports suggest there may be a very simple answer. More expensive iPhone models tend to be more popular, which could leave little incentive for Apple to continue pursuing cheaper phones like the iPhone SE.
Apple did not respond to CNET’s request for comment.
The third-generation iPhone SE, which debuted in March, starts at $429 and is essentially an iPhone 8 stuffed with the guts of an iPhone 13. CNET’s Patrick Holland called it an “amazing value” inbut it also highlighted missing elements that made it look outdated, such as its lack of a full-screen design or a night mode for the camera.
Previous generations of iPhone SE have taken a similar approach; The 2020 version had basically the same design but had an iPhone 11 chip. The 2016 model had an iPhone 5S body with an iPhone 6S processor. The rumored fourth-generation iPhone SE was expected to adopt a new design similar to the iPhone XR, according to YouTube personality and gadget leaker Jon Prosser.
To understand why Apple canceled the next iPhone SE, consider the changes Apple recently made to its iPhone 14 lineup. In a departure from the past two years, Apple did not release a cheaper “mini” version of its new flagship iPhone in 2022. Instead, it released a larger version of the regular iPhone 14 called the iPhone 14 Plus, which is $100 more expensive. than the regular $799 iPhone 14, raising shoppers’ entry barrier.
The change follows reports from Nikkei Asian Review and Kuo (via MacRumors) that Apple will cancel the iPhone Mini in 2022, with the former adding that the Mini model didn’t resonate with consumers. Combined, the disposal of the Mini and reports that the iPhone SE rumored next year may have been axed could indicate that Apple is steering clear of releasing smaller, cheaper iPhones.
But Gene Munster, managing partner of technology investment firm Loup and a longtime Apple analyst, doesn’t see it that way. He believes that the iPhone SE still plays an important role in Apple’s lineup due to its lower price.
“It’s still, I think, the best bang for your buck when it comes to the iPhone,” he said.
Evidence is that the more expensive iPhones tend to be the best sellers, which may help explain this shift. The average selling price of an iPhone increased 7% year over year in the third quarter of 2022, according to Counterpoint Research. The market research firm also reported in June that Apple dominated the global premium phone market with a 62% share in Q1 2022. It’s important to note that Counterpoint defines premium phones as devices costing $400 or higher, which means the next-gen iPhone will fall The SE is in this category because it starts at $429. However, the report did say that Apple’s growth in the premium segment came largely from the iPhone 13 lineup.
The more expensive iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max also seem to be the stars of Apple’s new smartphone lineup so far. The information stated that Apple reduced the production of the iPhone 14 Plus within two weeks of its launch, while the research company Trendforce says that Apple boosted the production of the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max. ku also he said on Twitter In September, the iPhone 14 Pro Max was responsible for about 60% of Apple’s order increase for the Pro range, indicating that Apple’s most expensive new iPhone is also the most popular. A November 2022 report from Wave7 Research also said that 38 out of 39 carrier service representatives surveyed said they had no in-store inventory of the iPhone 14 Pro or Pro Max.
Meanwhile, the iPhone SE has accounted for only about 5% to 8% of quarterly iPhone sales in the US over the past two years, said Josh Lowitz of Consumer Intelligence Research Partners. When looking at the total volume of the latest iPhone models in a given year, the Pro versions typically account for 35% to 40% of sales, while the iPhone SE makes up about 20%, according to Monster.
It also made it easier to get high-end phones for cheaper, especially when trading in an older device, my colleague said After the launch of the iPhone 13. Many American shoppers are also paying for their phones on monthly installment plans through carriers, making the higher prices easier to swallow. Both of these factors can make the case for buying a less expensive iPhone with fewer features more difficult.
“Because you’re paying over a long period of time … a $100 spread, or even a $200 spread, isn’t much a month,” Lowitz said.
At the same time, Samsung has achieved success in the budget phone market. Its Galaxy A phones, which typically cost hundreds of dollars less than its flagship Galaxy S phones, accounted for 58% of Samsung’s smartphone unit sales in 2021, according to Counterpoint Research data previously provided to CNET. Samsung Galaxy A phones have modern features not found in the iPhone SE, such as a multi-lens camera and larger screens, although they often run on less powerful processors than more expensive Samsung phones.
The idea that Apple may have canceled the iPhone SE 2024 raises questions about the future of the SE line in general. Apple extended the SE brand to the Apple Watch in 2020 for the first time andfor this product in september.
iPhone SE (2022): Apple’s cheapest phone brings 5G to a classic design
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The fact that Apple brought the SE line to another product made it seem like a stable item in Apple’s lineup. But if Kuo’s vision turns out to be accurate, the iPhone SE’s days may be numbered. Once you take a closer look at how Apple’s smartphone lineup and data on phone shipments have changed, it’s easy to understand why.
But Monster isn’t convinced that cheaper iPhones like the SE will be gone forever. Having a more affordable option makes it easier for Apple to achieve its broader goal of getting more customers into its network of products and services.
“I think this plays an important role,” he said. “I don’t think Apple is giving up on this price point.”