Rumor: Apple developing 'iPhone SE 2' variant with Face ID, 5.4-inch screen

Posted:
in iPhone edited August 2020
A convoluted rumor on Tuesday suggests Apple is working on an update to iPhone 8 that swaps out Touch ID for a TrueDepth camera module with Face ID, enabling integration of a larger 5.4-inch screen.

iPhone SE 2


Citing supply chain sources who displayed wares at CES 2020, MacOtakara reports Apple could be developing a Face ID-toting iPhone 8 follow-up alongside a much-rumored Touch ID version media outlets have tentatively dubbed "iPhone SE 2."

The rumored handset will pack a 5.4-inch screen into a case close in size to that of the iPhone 8, which itself was just over 5.4 inches tall. A 5.4-inch display would be a notable improvement over the so-called "iPhone SE 2's" predecessor, as both iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 featured 4.7-inch LCD screens.

A switch to Face ID and, presumably, the deletion of iPhone 8's top and bottom bezels -- affectionately referred to as its "forehead" and "chin" -- will free up space for the larger display, the sources said.

On the back is a "much bigger" camera as compared to iPhone 8, while the True Tone flash is said to "return" to a size seen on iPhone 7. While a bigger camera is expected, both in terms of megapixels and physical size, the True Tone flash comment is confusing as the part is identical on iPhone 7 and 8.

Today's report adds to a veritable mountain of "iPhone SE 2" rumors. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo was among the first to deliver news of the upcoming low-cost handset last June, saying he expects the model to borrow most of its internal hardware from iPhone 8. Kuo later revised expectations and said the phone will share design elements from iPhone 8, including a 4.7-inch screen and Touch ID, while incorporating some modern parts like the A13 Bionic chip introduced with iPhone 11.

More recently, the Apple analyst pegged "iPhone SE 2" to debut in March as the first of five iPhones to launch in 2020. Interestingly, Kuo believes a 5.4-inch iPhone will see introduction this fall alongside a 6.1-inch LCD model and 6.1- and 6.7-inch OLED options.

It is possible that MacOtakara sources are confusing the supposed "iPhone SE 2" with an expected 5.4-inch model due out this fall, in which case the report offers no new information aside from the adoption of a smaller form factor. Apple's iPhone 11 measures 5.94 inches tall and 2.8 inches wide compared to iPhone 8 at 5.45 inches tall and 2.65 inches wide.

Further confusing matters, Kuo in December said he expects Apple to release an "iPhone SE 2 Plus" device with a 5.5- or 6.1-inch screen in 2021. The handset is predicted to feature a full-face display, but instead of Face ID will rely on a Touch ID module integrated into the power button.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 40
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 2,270member
    It's really feeling like iPhone SE rumours are just easy fodder for creating easy moves (if only small) in stock price for sentiment traders.
    curtis hannah
  • Reply 2 of 40
    5G?
  • Reply 3 of 40
    Fred257Fred257 Posts: 230member
    5G?
    Nope.  That’s in the fall.
  • Reply 4 of 40
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 2,673member
    Umm, the SE was a very clear answer to a hole in their iPhone line-up... a smaller phone.

    This “SE 2” everyone talks about doesn’t offer anything that’s not already offered in another product. These rumors keep mentioning the iPhone 8... Why make the SE the new iPhone 8? That makes no sense at all. If they’re going to update the 8, just call it the iPhone 9, and continue to offer Touch ID for those that want it.

    The point of the SE model was to offer something different that was not offered in another model. What I expect is an iPhone with 4.7 inch display and Face ID... Basically a smaller iPhone X, but with an LCD screen.
    pulseimagesentropysblurpbleepblooppscooter63netmagecincyteeJWSCbaconstangcurtis hannahcornchip
  • Reply 5 of 40
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,035member
    If they're going to do Face ID on a smaller display then they'll need to use reduced components to keep the notch width down, keep a forehead, or they data on the sides of the notch may have to reduced or become more cramped. I hope they're able to reduce the Face ID components for the notch all around in the coming years.
    netmage
  • Reply 6 of 40
    Not going to happen. The whole point of SE being a cheaper device is possible thanks to reuse of older/existing components. New case is expensive, new screen is even more expensive. 
    cornchip
  • Reply 7 of 40
    mjtomlin said:
    Umm, the SE was a very clear answer to a hole in their iPhone line-up... a smaller phone.

    This “SE 2” everyone talks about doesn’t offer anything that’s not already offered in another product. These rumors keep mentioning the iPhone 8... Why make the SE the new iPhone 8? That makes no sense at all. If they’re going to update the 8, just call it the iPhone 9, and continue to offer Touch ID for those that want it.

    The point of the SE model was to offer something different that was not offered in another model. What I expect is an iPhone with 4.7 inch display and Face ID... Basically a smaller iPhone X, but with an LCD screen.
    When did Apple ever say the point of the SE was to offer a smaller phone in the lineup? Sure some people might want that but Apple never said that’s why it existed. At the time the SE was released Apple was still selling the 5S. The SE replaced that. The oldest phone Apple is selling right now is the iPhone 8. The rumors are an updated 8 style phone with new internals. That would follow what they did with the SE which is take the oldest phone in the lineup and refresh it.
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 8 of 40
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 2,270member
    mjtomlin said:
    Umm, the SE was a very clear answer to a hole in their iPhone line-up... a smaller phone.

    This “SE 2” everyone talks about doesn’t offer anything that’s not already offered in another product. These rumors keep mentioning the iPhone 8... Why make the SE the new iPhone 8? That makes no sense at all. If they’re going to update the 8, just call it the iPhone 9, and continue to offer Touch ID for those that want it.

    The point of the SE model was to offer something different that was not offered in another model. What I expect is an iPhone with 4.7 inch display and Face ID... Basically a smaller iPhone X, but with an LCD screen.
    When did Apple ever say the point of the SE was to offer a smaller phone in the lineup? Sure some people might want that but Apple never said that’s why it existed. At the time the SE was released Apple was still selling the 5S. The SE replaced that. The oldest phone Apple is selling right now is the iPhone 8. The rumors are an updated 8 style phone with new internals. That would follow what they did with the SE which is take the oldest phone in the lineup and refresh it.
    Pretty sure the SE introduction mentioned a couple of times people really love the small size of the iPhone 5s. 
    mike1JWSCbaconstangleftoverbacon
  • Reply 9 of 40
    I was holding out for this SE 2/iPhone 9 to replace my outdated 7 Plus but yesterday decided to pluck a cool grand+ for the rather sweet 11 Pro. Frankly I’m glad I did. The mere mention of a 4.7 inch screen made me cringe. 
  • Reply 10 of 40
    macguimacgui Posts: 2,341member
    I feel it doubtful that an iPhone supposed to be an entry level phone would have face ID. And I really with the media would catch up and stop calling a phone which might have only one thing in common with the SE, if that —a low price — the SE2.

    I guess given Apple Tier One phones at $1000 allow a $600 phone to be called 'entry-level inexpensive'.

    ONE site that I've seen has mentioned the rumor that some source claimed the phone would be called the iPhone 9. This make a tonne more sense than SE2, even in the rumors.
    baconstang
  • Reply 11 of 40
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    Ahhh!  Now, unlike previous rumors (an iPhone 8 chassis with a state of the art processor) this makes sense.

    The greatest limitation of both the current SE and the 8 is that the screen size is constrained by the bezels.   Remove the bezels and you get a modern phone.   Keep the bezels and you have an "older, old fashioned" phone.

    Contrarily, for the vast majority of buyers, their phones are not constrained by the processor.  So there is room to let an older processor drive the new SE.   Or, alternatively, they could do like what they did with the original SE back in the day: 
    Start with a modern form factor and a (semi)modern processor and then allow them to age in place over the next several years.

    As this starts to take shape, the SE2 is starting to sound like a very viable phone for a lot of people:
    -- Smaller form factor (which is much needed in their line-up!)
    -- Lower price (Apple could follow their newest practices and offer multiple discounts as the phone ages)
    -- Modern features (or modern enough for most people)
    -- Potential for an SE+ that provides a larger (LED) screen in a lower priced phone.

    Nice going Apple!   That could fill in some holes that will make a lot of people happy over the next several years!

    But, as somebody asked previously:   What about 5G?  Currently that is not an issue, but over the life of any phone purchased in 2020 it will be.
    One answer is to do what they've been doing in the Mac Lines and provide incremental improvements (such as 5G) as available and needed without creating a whole new model and a lot of hoopla...
    baconstang
  • Reply 12 of 40
    gordygordy Posts: 1,004member
    I presume adding FaceID to the prior SE form factor would give a smaller IPhone a forehead--or devil horns. Maybe that's why they're looking at a larger phone. I still hope for a small form factor iPhone with as many modern features as possible. An iPhone 8 ain't it, just looks archaic now.
    baconstang
  • Reply 13 of 40
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,899member
    Larger size iphone go from 5.5" but mid-size phone, a sweet spot size is between 4.7"-5.2". The iPhone 6/7/8 size has served well for Apple so any mid size iPhone Apple wants to create should be in that range with touch id or face id.
  • Reply 14 of 40
    netmagenetmage Posts: 314member
    Disappointed the iPhone X size (non-Plus/Max) is rumored to be growing - unless it is because the new iPhone 4ish design has sharper corners and allowed slight screen growth without overall size increase. That would be ideal. 
    edited January 2020
  • Reply 15 of 40
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,768member
    mattinoz said:
    mjtomlin said:
    Umm, the SE was a very clear answer to a hole in their iPhone line-up... a smaller phone.

    This “SE 2” everyone talks about doesn’t offer anything that’s not already offered in another product. These rumors keep mentioning the iPhone 8... Why make the SE the new iPhone 8? That makes no sense at all. If they’re going to update the 8, just call it the iPhone 9, and continue to offer Touch ID for those that want it.

    The point of the SE model was to offer something different that was not offered in another model. What I expect is an iPhone with 4.7 inch display and Face ID... Basically a smaller iPhone X, but with an LCD screen.
    When did Apple ever say the point of the SE was to offer a smaller phone in the lineup? Sure some people might want that but Apple never said that’s why it existed. At the time the SE was released Apple was still selling the 5S. The SE replaced that. The oldest phone Apple is selling right now is the iPhone 8. The rumors are an updated 8 style phone with new internals. That would follow what they did with the SE which is take the oldest phone in the lineup and refresh it.
    Pretty sure the SE introduction mentioned a couple of times people really love the small size of the iPhone 5s. 
    Easy to confirm if you post that link.
    cornchip
  • Reply 16 of 40
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,768member

    mjtomlin said:
    Umm, the SE was a very clear answer to a hole in their iPhone line-up... a smaller phone.
    Like others mentioned, this was never stated as far as I know. It is likewise widely speculated that the SE existed to serve a different hole -- a cheaper phone, by using an old design/shell.
  • Reply 17 of 40
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,768member

    macgui said:

    I guess given Apple Tier One phones at $1000 allow a $600 phone to be called 'entry-level inexpensive'.
    No, entry-level is already down to $449 today. $600 is mid-level.
  • Reply 18 of 40
    mattinoz said:
    mjtomlin said:
    Umm, the SE was a very clear answer to a hole in their iPhone line-up... a smaller phone.

    This “SE 2” everyone talks about doesn’t offer anything that’s not already offered in another product. These rumors keep mentioning the iPhone 8... Why make the SE the new iPhone 8? That makes no sense at all. If they’re going to update the 8, just call it the iPhone 9, and continue to offer Touch ID for those that want it.

    The point of the SE model was to offer something different that was not offered in another model. What I expect is an iPhone with 4.7 inch display and Face ID... Basically a smaller iPhone X, but with an LCD screen.
    When did Apple ever say the point of the SE was to offer a smaller phone in the lineup? Sure some people might want that but Apple never said that’s why it existed. At the time the SE was released Apple was still selling the 5S. The SE replaced that. The oldest phone Apple is selling right now is the iPhone 8. The rumors are an updated 8 style phone with new internals. That would follow what they did with the SE which is take the oldest phone in the lineup and refresh it.
    Pretty sure the SE introduction mentioned a couple of times people really love the small size of the iPhone 5s. 
    I’m sure they did.  Marketing speak. I remember with the 5 or maybe it was the 5S Apple ran an ad about how great the phone was for one handed use (true). None of their current flagships are easy to use one handed. Again that was marketing speak to sell that particular product.
    cornchipleftoverbacon
  • Reply 19 of 40

    Ahhh!  Now, unlike previous rumors (an iPhone 8 chassis with a state of the art processor) this makes sense.

    The greatest limitation of both the current SE and the 8 is that the screen size is constrained by the bezels.   Remove the bezels and you get a modern phone.   Keep the bezels and you have an "older, old fashioned" phone.

    Contrarily, for the vast majority of buyers, their phones are not constrained by the processor.  So there is room to let an older processor drive the new SE.   Or, alternatively, they could do like what they did with the original SE back in the day: 
    Start with a modern form factor and a (semi)modern processor and then allow them to age in place over the next several years.

    As this starts to take shape, the SE2 is starting to sound like a very viable phone for a lot of people:
    -- Smaller form factor (which is much needed in their line-up!)
    -- Lower price (Apple could follow their newest practices and offer multiple discounts as the phone ages)
    -- Modern features (or modern enough for most people)
    -- Potential for an SE+ that provides a larger (LED) screen in a lower priced phone.

    Nice going Apple!   That could fill in some holes that will make a lot of people happy over the next several years!

    But, as somebody asked previously:   What about 5G?  Currently that is not an issue, but over the life of any phone purchased in 2020 it will be.
    One answer is to do what they've been doing in the Mac Lines and provide incremental improvements (such as 5G) as available and needed without creating a whole new model and a lot of hoopla...
    I don’t see an entry level iPhone having Face ID.  Seems to me this is all about reusing design/parts and just updating the internals. The 8 definitely looks outdated but some people might not care if they prefer Touch ID,
  • Reply 20 of 40
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member

    mjtomlin said:
    Umm, the SE was a very clear answer to a hole in their iPhone line-up... a smaller phone.
    Like others mentioned, this was never stated as far as I know. It is likewise widely speculated that the SE existed to serve a different hole -- a cheaper phone, by using an old design/shell.

    Can it not serve both purposes?   Whether by design or accident, it has so far.

    But, I don't think the design was an accident:   Steve Jobs loved that form and size and, when Apple went to the iPhone 6 form, many customers missed the iPhone 4/5 form factor as well.   So, this was a way for Apple to keep everybody happy while keeping up with the trend towards larger phones -- phablets.
    baconstang
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