Apple's iPhone SE Sales a 'Bright Spot' in Q2 2020 Thanks to Android Switchers and Those Upgrading From iPhone 6s or Older

Apple's U.S. iPhone sales were down 23 percent in the second quarter of 2020 compared to the second quarter of 2019, according to new sales estimates shared today by Counterpoint Research. Though sales were down, the iPhone SE was seen as something of a "bright spot," selling above expectations.

iPhone SE Cosmopolitan Clean
Overall U.S. smartphone sell-through was down 25 percent year over year in Q2 2020, but Apple and Samsung were able to maintain sales somewhat better than other brands due to a strong online presence. In Apple's case, the new 2020 iPhone SE, released in April, also helped Apple's sales volumes throughout the quarter.

counterpointiphonesales
Priced starting at $399, the ‌iPhone SE‌ has been selling well in both postpaid and prepaid channels. More than 30 percent of ‌iPhone SE‌ buyers were upgrading from an ‌iPhone‌ 6s or older, and more than 26 percent of ‌iPhone SE‌ users came from an Android device, which Counterpoint says is a higher than normal Android to iOS switch rate.

Apple volumes grew through the quarter and were especially helped by ‌iPhone SE‌ volumes. It was not a typical Apple launch with large fanfare and a launch event at the Steve Jobs theatre, which normally also includes a blitz of TV ads. However, the device has been successful and selling above expectations in both postpaid and prepaid channels. Since the ‌iPhone SE‌ launched, carrier stores and national retail have been re-opening. Some channels saw large promos to draw shoppers back to stores. This was especially true within Walmart, Metro by T-Mobile and Boost.

Apple's ‌iPhone SE‌ sales are "unlikely" to cannibalize sales of the 2020 iPhone 12 models because ‌iPhone SE‌ purchasers are "more pragmatic" about price, less concerned with 5G connectivity, and the smaller display is "not considered a hindrance."

According to Counterpoint Research, mid-March through mid-April saw the weakest sales in the overall smartphone market, but things began picking up again in the back half of April after consumers received stimulus checks and retail stores began reopening. Smartphone sales for May through the end of June grew week over week, and June 2020 sales were ultimately stronger than June 2019 sales.

Related Roundup: iPhone SE 2020
Buyer's Guide: iPhone SE (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

jclo Avatar
26 weeks ago


Why upgrade from 6S to SE? It has no sense.

Faster processor that can run newer versions of iOS for longer.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Relentless Power Avatar
26 weeks ago


The key to its success has been the fact that this is one great phone. It isn't the leftovers or old tech. It is a great phone.

It is a great phone, but I think the true key to the SE’s success is the price point. It’s ‘a lot of phone’ for ~$399 and it’s affordable enough Where consumers can pay full cash price versus financing it as well.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nutmac Avatar
26 weeks ago


Why upgrade from 6S to SE? It has no sense.

* Your phone is damaged or stolen
* Better camera (better image quality, optical image stabilizer, shoots with lower light)
* Double the storage
* More cellular bands, faster wireless (both cellular and Wi-Fi)
* Longer battery life and new battery
* Qi wireless charging
* Double the performance
* Water resistance

But I get it. iPhone SE 2020 doesn't look fresh enough. I would've loved some redesign. But at the time, Apple is able to hit $399 entry price precisely because it is recycling an old design.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JosephAW Avatar
26 weeks ago
There is still a pent up demand for an original "SE" size iPhone without a home button and notch.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dwaltwhit Avatar
26 weeks ago
The key to its success has been the fact that this is one great phone. It isn't the leftovers or old tech. It is a great phone.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
az431 Avatar
26 weeks ago


Do you really need a smartphone if you're stuck inside?

What difference does it make whether someone is inside or outside?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iphone 5s black slate

Images of Unreleased iPhone 5s in Black and Slate Shared Online

Sunday January 17, 2021 9:47 am PST by
Twitter user @DongleBookPro has today shared images of a prototype iPhone 5s in an unreleased Black and Slate color. The iPhone 5s was launched in September 2013. The device featured Touch ID, a 64-bit processor, and a True Tone LED flash for the first time. Other new features included a five-element lens with an f/2.2 aperture, a 15 percent larger camera sensor, Burst Mode, and Slo-Mo...
iP12 charge airpods feature 2

Hidden iPhone 12 Hardware Feature Could Still be Unlocked

Thursday January 14, 2021 2:51 am PST by
All iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro models purportedly have a hidden reverse wireless charging feature, according to an FCC filing. The feature has not yet been activated, but could yet be unlocked for an upcoming Apple accessory. The FCC filing suggests that iPhone 12 models contain the hardware for Wireless Power Transfer (WPT) to accessories: In addition to being able to be charged by a...
Top Stories 43 Feature

Top Stories: MacBook Pro, iMac, Mac Pro, and iPhone Rumors, Best of CES 2021

Saturday January 16, 2021 6:00 am PST by
This week was sure a busy one in the Apple world, with a flurry of announcements out of CES early in the week followed by a rash of Mac- and iPhone-related rumors later in the week. The new rumors this week included details on updated MacBook Pro, iMac, and Mac Pro models, as well as a few other tidbits, so make sure to read on below to get caught up! Kuo: New MacBook Pro Models to...
foldable iPhone concept feature

Apple Testing In-Display Fingerprint Sensor for iPhone 13, Foldable iPhone Also in the Works

Friday January 15, 2021 1:46 pm PST by
Apple has started "early work" on an iPhone that has a foldable display, according to a new report from Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Though testing of a foldable iPhone has begun, Apple has not committed to releasing a device that has a foldable display. Development has not yet expanded beyond a display and Apple does not have full foldable iPhone prototypes in its labs. Like foldable...
16inchmacbookpromain

Kuo: New MacBook Pro Models to Feature Flat-Edged Design, MagSafe, No Touch Bar and More Ports

Thursday January 14, 2021 9:32 pm PST by
Apple is working on two new MacBook Pro models that will feature significant design changes, well-respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in a note to investors that was obtained by MacRumors. According to Kuo, Apple is developing two models in 14 and 16-inch size options. The new MacBook Pro machines will feature a flat-edged design, which Kuo describes as "similar to the iPhone 12" ...
macbook pro flexgate

Apple Extends 13-Inch MacBook Pro Backlight Repair Program

Sunday January 17, 2021 10:31 am PST by
Apple this week extended its worldwide 13-inch MacBook Pro Display Backlight Service Program, authorizing coverage for eligible notebooks for up to five years after the original purchase date or up to three years after the start date of the program, whichever is longer. The previous cutoff was four years after the original purchase date. Apple launched the program on May 21, 2019 after...
iphone x camera close

iOS 14.4 Will Introduce Warning on iPhones With Non-Genuine Cameras

Thursday January 14, 2021 8:07 am PST by
In the second beta of iOS 14.4 seeded to developers and public testers this week, MacRumors contributor Steve Moser has discovered code indicating that Apple will be introducing a new warning on iPhones that have had their camera repaired or replaced with aftermarket components rather than genuine Apple components. "Unable to verify this iPhone has a genuine Apple camera," the message will...
Apple TV Ray Light 2 Triad

Apple Extends Free Apple TV+ Trials Until July

Friday January 15, 2021 10:50 am PST by
Apple is once again planning to extend its free Apple TV+ trial subscriptions, this time until July. When Apple TV+ launched in November 2019, Apple offered free Apple TV+ subscriptions to those who purchased a new Apple device in or after September 2019. Those free subscriptions were set to expire in November 2020, but in October 2020, Apple announced that it was extending free trials...
mac pro mini feature

Apple Working on Two New Mac Pro Desktops, One of Which Will Be Reminiscent of Power Mac G4 Cube

Friday January 15, 2021 10:23 am PST by
Apple is developing two versions of the Mac Pro to succeed the Mac Pro that was first released in December 2019, according to a new report from Bloomberg. The first updated Mac Pro is a direct successor to the current Mac Pro and it will use the same design. It may also be equipped with Intel processors rather than Apple silicon chips, and it could be one of the sole machines in the Mac...
macbook pro magsafe

MagSafe is Coming Back to the Mac: A Look Back at Apple's Original Magnetic Charging Technology

Friday January 15, 2021 12:16 pm PST by
Surprise late night rumors last night provided us with our first in-depth look at what we can expect from the new MacBook Pro models that are coming in 2021, and there are some significant changes in the works. Along with additional ports, a new flat-edged design, and the removal of the Touch Bar, Apple's updated MacBook Pro machines will readopt MagSafe. MagSafe in the 2021 MacBook Pro...