Apple’s upcoming four-inch ‘iPhone SE’ will cost between $300 and $400 in the United States, it will have a twelve-megapixel camera on the back rather than an eight-megapixel shooter, as previously rumored, and is entering mass production soon. Moreover, the existing iPhone 5s is slated to be discounted by fifty percent.
That’s the gist of a note KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo sent to clients, a copy of which was obtained by AppleInsider.
Prior rumors have asserted belief that the iPhone SE will pack in the latest hardware inside a four-inch device with an iPhone 5s-like design, sans camera technology: the rumor-mill largely agreed that the upcoming iPhone will come outfitted with the eight-megapixel iSight model found on the previous-generation iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
Kuo, however, wrote that the handset will have a twelve-megapixel rear camera. If true, than the only things distinguishing the latest iPhone 6s series from the iPhone SE would be 3D Touch, bigger screen sizes, larger batteries and design (the iPhone SE is widely believed to have an iPhone 5s-esque look and feel).
The analyst has pegged iPhone SE shipments in 2016 to twelve million units, adding that the price of the existing iPhone 5s may be cut in half. The iPhone 5s currently costs $450 off-contract in the United States, meaning it may be discounted to as low as $225, potentially making it extremely well-suited for customers in emerging markets like India.
For further comparison, the year-old iPhone 6 starts at $549.
The aggressive pricing model should help grow total 4-inch iPhone shipments 131 percent year-over-year to 37 million units, Kuo wrote. By some estimates, one-third of iPhones sold are devices with screen sizes no larger than four inches diagonally.
Other expected features of the iPhone SE include the latest A9 chip with 2GB of RAM, a slightly curved display, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2, Live Photos and 4K video capture support, a 1,642 mAh battery, the M9 motion co-processor which supports a tetherless ‘Hey Siri’ feature and NFC circuitry for touchless Apple Pay transactions.
The device should come in the familiar gold, rose gold, silver and grey colorways and be provided in 16GB and 64GB capacities.
Apple is believed to be holding a media event in mid-March that should serve as a launchpad for both the iPhone SE and a third-generation iPad Air, described as a smaller iPad Pro with support for Apple Pencil and a smaller Smart Keyboard.
iPhone SE and iPhone 7 renderings by German magazine Curved.de.