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iPhone SE 2 Rumors Remain Conflicted Over Design and Release Date

iPhone SE 2 rumors are running rampant, but there is little consensus about what to expect should the device be real.


The latest word comes from Japanese blog Mac Otakara, citing Chinese accessory makers who claim production has yet to begin for the second-generation iPhone SE. In fact, Apple is apparently still considering a final design for the device among the several different prototypes it is said to have tested.

The report claims that at least one of those prototypes has an iPhone X-esque design, including a nearly full screen display with no home button and a notch, while other prototypes are believed to have a similar design as the current iPhone SE, except with a glass back, presumably to allow wireless charging.

Ben Geskin recently shared photos of what appears to be iPhone display glass with a shallow cutout resembling the TrueDepth sensor housing on iPhone X, but in a follow-up tweet, he said his "main source" says that the new iPhone SE will have the same design and display as the current model, but with a glass back.


Meanwhile, MacRumors obtained renders from case maker Olixar last week that depicted a new iPhone SE with an iPhone X-esque display, but still with an aluminum, flat-edged frame like the current model and iPhone 5s. Olixar said its renders are based on information obtained from a "reliable source" in China.

The renders suggest the iPhone SE's notch would be approximately half as wide as the one on the iPhone X, likely making it too slim to house facial recognition sensors. One possibility is that the iPhone SE does move to an edge-to-edge design, with a notch, but without any of the Face ID technology.

As we said at the time, however, it's hard to imagine that Apple would include Face ID on the iPhone SE without significantly raising its price, as such a move would likely cannibalize sales of the iPhone X lineup.

And without Touch ID or Face ID, it's unclear how authentication would work on the new iPhone SE. Chinese company Vivo's new X20 Plus UD became the first smartphone with an in-display fingerprint sensor early this year, but Apple seemed to have elected against that approach early on with the iPhone X.

In whatever form it arrives, the accessory makers believe the new iPhone SE is more likely to launch in the third quarter of 2018, suggesting the device could be unveiled alongside a new iPhone X and iPhone X Plus in September. If true, however, Apple has likely already finalized the design of the device.

A handful of earlier reports and regulatory filings had suggested the new iPhone SE could be unveiled in May or at WWDC 2018 in June.

It's unclear how the Chinese accessory makers obtained their information, but they could be confusing one of the prototypes with the rumored 6.1-inch iPhone. That device is expected to have some iPhone X features like Face ID, but lack an OLED display, stainless steel frame, and 3D Touch to achieve a lower price point.

All in all, it's a confusing mess right now. Apple often prototypes several iPhone models, and it could even have some fake versions passing through the supply chain to throw off leakers. But where there's smoke, there's often fire, so specifics aside, it sounds like a new iPhone SE of some kind is in the works.

Apple hasn't truly updated the iPhone SE since it launched in March 2016, beyond doubling its available storage capacities a year later. The device currently starts at $349 in the United States with 32GB of storage.

Related Roundup: iPhone SE
Buyer's Guide: iPhone SE (Don't Buy)


Top Rated Comments

(View all)

10 weeks ago

I’ll be shocked if Apple keeps a six-year old design. But they’ve shocked me before in good ways and bad...

The current iPhone X is basically an iPhone 8 design , which is a 7 design, 6S, 6.

So what’s wrong with having the most beloved 4/5/SE design with nice updates?? It’s the best design they ever did and many echo my opinion. An SE with an edge to edge screen that’s the same size as the 8 screen (roughly 4.7). Would indeed be a dream come true.

Believe it or not there are those of us who want a one handed phone , not an iPad mini in our pockets. For those who don’t have an iPad , the plus phones are amazing. But since an iPad Pro is my main home device I just want the best Apple has to offer with that new tech in a small package.
Rating: 19 Votes
10 weeks ago

I’m not saying change the size, just that Th design is getting old

Personally I think it’s timeless. Hence the reason the SE is still around. Tons of people love the design of it. Whereas the current design of the 8/X actually feels a little stale. The round edges make it WAY more slippery than the 4/5 design.
Rating: 18 Votes
10 weeks ago
Perhaps it’s actually two devices. The cheap SE2 being produced in the India factories for release in a couple of months. Furthermore an ‘iPhone XS’ being prototyped in China, with a later release date.

That might explain the conflicting rumours.
Rating: 9 Votes
10 weeks ago
I don't care about the display, the notch, the face ID. Just please keep the headphone jack. I want to continue to listen to music.
Rating: 9 Votes
10 weeks ago
Nothing like "innovation" with the same old, same old.
Rating: 7 Votes
10 weeks ago

A notched display on a such a small phone doesn't make sense.

Why doesn't it make any sense? It makes a lot more sense than on a big phone. A small phone needs a big screen that fills the entire device even more.
Rating: 6 Votes
10 weeks ago

Perhaps we might see two devices in this form factor? An incrementally updated version of the current SE with a glass back and spec bump, as well as a higher end device with the full screen display and FaceID so that there remains a 'cheaper' model.


Maybe Apple will come to its senses and realize that there's a decent demand for an iPhone the size of the SE, but with the newest features iPhones have to offer (i.e. iPhone X), and that's what they're going to produce.

I loved my 5S and my SE, but not because of the old tech (headphone jack excepted), but because of the size. I'd much prefer this year's tech in that size than 2016's tech in that size.
Rating: 6 Votes
10 weeks ago
I would think it would have a decent niche if it has the headphone jack and Touch ID still.

There are people who still want these things.
Rating: 6 Votes
4 days ago at 07:12 am

After living with a 6s for ~2 weeks, I couldn't agree more. I hated it.


I had a 6 when it first came out for about a month - then back to my 5s..
I tried again when the 6s came along...back to my 5s and then to my SE that I have now.

I'm done ***** around with larger than 5s/SE size phones.
I've tried it - It's awful for me and totally the opposite of how I use my phone.

I don't want to shift my hands around trying to hold it securely.
I'm not interested in "reachability" or weird features to try to "help" with using it.
I don't want to have "find space for it" in shorts and pants pockets and backpacks during exercise or biking or around my car dash/cup area.

It's just not a superior experience for all people to have a large phone.
Rating: 5 Votes
10 weeks ago

Make a blind test, and if you hear any difference, come and tell us. For now just know you’re wrong! I listen on Apple Music, AAC full transmission and sounds awesome without any lost info...I don’t know what is bad Music... I guess there is no bad or good music, just music.


It's pretty easy to hear the difference, even with compressed aac tracks. Even more so when comparing to a CD or other uncompressed formats.
[doublepost=1526398144][/doublepost]I love all the comments on a wired jack being antiquated technology, yet every single piece of professional audio gear still uses a 1/4" headphone jack, even older than the 1/8" jack.

Keeping the headphone jack on a phone does not affect people that don't use it, so why so hellbent on defending the removal of it?
Rating: 5 Votes

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