Apple will start taking orders on Friday (April 17) for its new, smaller, $399 iPhone in a move to reach budget-conscious customers as the COVID-19 pandemic wreaks havoc on paychecks.
“The first iPhone SE was a hit with many customers who loved its unique combination of small size, high-end performance and affordable price; the new second-generation iPhone SE builds on that great idea and improves on it in every way – including our best-ever single-camera system for great photos and videos – while still being very affordable,” Phil Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide marketing for Apple, said in a statement on Wednesday (April 15).
“iPhone SE features the industry-leading performance of A13 Bionic that enables great battery life, takes stunning Portrait mode and Smart HDR photos, shoots amazing videos with stereo audio, is great for games and super-fast web surfing, and is built with the same industry-leading security features our customers expect. We can’t wait to get iPhone SE into customers’ hands,” Schiller added.
Delivery of the new device is anticipated to begin on April 24. New iPhones are usually unveiled at a press conference event with fans, but because of the coronavirus lockdown, large gatherings are still prohibited in Santa Clara County, California, where Apple is headquartered.
Starting prices for the new iPhone SE will be $50 below the iPhone 8, which is being discontinued. The new phones will have a 4.7-inch display and the same processor chip as the 11 Pro. There won’t be a facial recognition system or 5G connectivity, but the new phones will include wireless charging and a high-end camera.
Apple’s choice to move to a lower-priced model likely stemmed from more customers buying older phones, like the iPhone 8, Ben Bajarin, principal analyst for consumer market intelligence at Creative Strategies, told Reuters.
The new iPhone will give people “a device and price that can still get people on the latest technology,” he said. “Having a device you’re sure is going to last a long time is exactly what (consumers) want.”
Made of aluminum and glass and resembling the iPhone 8, the SE comes in black, white and red and will be available in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB.
Apple is also planning to offer redesigned versions of its top-tier iPhones that will upgrade the iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. It will also introduce 5G capability to four new handset models along with two new accessories.