iPhone SE 4 Design Disappointment as Apple Backs Out of Small-Screen Devices

The fourth-generation iPhone SE will feature almost exactly the same design as the iPhone XR, according to recent reports.

SE 4 render 1
The latest report of the next ‌iPhone SE‌'s design comes from leaker Jon Prosser, who said that the fourth-generation ‌iPhone SE‌ will effectively share the design of the iPhone XR from 2018. The change is plausible given that the first-generation ‌iPhone SE‌'s design was based on 2013's ‌iPhone‌ 5S, while the second- and third-generation ‌iPhone SE‌'s design is based on 2017's ‌iPhone‌ 8.

The latest information expands on Prosser's initial claim from August, but he remains unclear on the internals and specifications of the device – though it is likely to use some older hardware to keep costs down. To showcase the fourth-generation ‌iPhone SE‌'s design, Apple concept graphic designer Ian Zelbo created renders that purport to accurately depict the new device:

SE 4 render 3
SE 4 render 2
In October 2021, a report from Chinese site MyDrivers explicitly said that the ‌iPhone SE‌ will move to an ‌iPhone‌ XR-like design – a claim that now seems to have been corroborated by a range of other sources.

The fourth-generation ‌iPhone SE‌ has been rumored since before the third-generation model launched earlier this year. Prosser's latest claim lines up with a recent forecast from display analyst Ross Young, who said that the next-generation ‌iPhone SE‌ will feature a 6.1-inch display with a "notch" cutout at the top of the display. Back in 2019, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo first said that Apple was working on an iPhone SE with a 6.1-inch LCD display. Since the ‌iPhone‌ XR featured a 6.1-inch LCD display with a notch, rumors seem to be in broad agreement about the design of the next-generation ‌iPhone SE‌.

The ‌iPhone SE‌ has historically been a device with a small display, meaning that significantly enlarging the device is a departure from what fans of the low-cost ‌iPhone‌ have come to expect. Fans of the form factor of the iPhone 13 mini may be similarly disappointed that the ‌iPhone SE‌ does not seem set to get the design of that device, either. Yet the latest report from Kuo has brought the launch of the next-generation ‌iPhone SE‌ into question, suggesting that the device could be cancelled or postponed.

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