The coronavirus outbreak in China is not expected to negatively impact Apple’s plans to kick off mass production of the rumored low-cost iPhone model in February ahead of a March launch, according to a new report from Bloomberg this morning.

While the coronavirus situation has negatively reflected on Apple’s suppliers and iPhone demand, its plans to launch a new low-cost handset in March are said to remain intact.

Mark Gurman, Debby Wu and Yuan Gao, writing for Bloomberg:

Amid its coronavirus troubles, Apple has been preparing to launch a new low-cost iPhone at around $400, Bloomberg News has reported. The model is still on track to launch in March, though the plans are still fluid, according to people familiar with the matter. Apple has also been preparing updated iPad Pro models with a new camera system for the first half of 2020 and the virus may yet impose delays or constraints on those plans.

Prior rumors have pointed to a device with an iPhone 8-like form factor and round edges akin to the iPhone 4 industrial design, rocking the Apple A13 chip with three gigabytes of RAM, Face ID, enhanced cameras and other improvements.

However, a new report from Fast Company describes a low-cost device with a 4.9-inch LCD screen (the original iPhone SE had a four-inch screen), glass back, improved antenna design , a new red color option and other perks — all for the same $399 price just like the original model — potentially making this “iPhone SE 2”, “iPhone 9” or whatever Apple chooses to call it the most affordable entry-level handset in the iPhone lineup.

Yesterday, an unsubstantiated and uncorroborated rumor put out by a German blog claimed that the Cupertino technology giant would be hosting a dedicated media event on March 31 to unveil the low-cost device ahead of its supposedly scheduled launch on April 3.

Are you looking forward to the iPhone SE successor?

Chime in with your thoughts in the comments down below!