Apple is expected to unveil a flurry of updated devices at the next Apple event on March 8, with the iPhone SE 2022 set to headline. Now, rumor has it the next-gen SE model may be priced from $300, which may lead to an even cheaper $199 iPhone SE (2020).
According to Loop Capital Markets analyst John Donovan (via Investor's Business Daily), the third-generation iPhone SE model is rumored to start at $300. Currently, the latest iPhone SE is priced from $399/£389, meaning the next model — with expected 5G connectivity and a possible A15 Bionic — would be significantly cheaper.
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On the other hand, according to a leak on Weibo, the iPhone SE is expected to be the same price as the previous model. With the added upgrades, it's unlikely Apple would reduce the price of its SE model to below its previous generation. However, we also don't expect Apple to increase the price of the SE model to match its previous flagship smartphone, such as the still available $499/£489 iPhone 11.
Apple has a habit of offering better specs on its flagship smartphones while retaining the same price tag, so there's a chance we could see the smartphone stick to the same $399. If this is the case, the current iPhone SE model is primed to get an ideal price cut.
As Bloomberg's Mark Gurman points out, Apple selling a $199 smartphone would entice newcomers to the iOS ecosystem. Those not fussed about 5G and enjoy a smaller handheld device when compared to flagship smartphones would still be treated with a blazing fast A13 Bionic and seamless connectivity with other Apple products, such as AirPods, Apple Watch and even Apple TV (for more advantages, check out why the iPhone SE (2020) is still one of the best iPhones).
Many third-party brands and refurbishers sell the current iPhone SE for around the $200/£200 mark, but buying a new model from the source at the same price would turn some heads. While many would aim for nabbing the fresh iPhone SE model, plenty of customers around the globe, especially regions that are more Android focussed, would opt for the current model as an affordable entry point to the Apple ecosystem. This could boost revenue for Apple's digital products, such as Apple Music, Apple Fitness+, Apple Arcade, iCloud storage, and more.
It's interesting to note that the best budget smartphones with 5G capabilities can be found for around $400, including the Realme 9 Pro+ 5G for £349 (around $470). With this in mind, Apple has the chance to bring a commendable 5G budget smartphone at a low price, and an even cheaper 4G model found in the iPhone SE (2020).
We're excited to see how the rumored iPhone SE 2022 will turn out, especially if it sports an A14 Bionic (as Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claims) or even an A15 chip. The rumored upcoming March Apple event won't just be a platform to unveil the SE model, as a new iPad Air 2022 and an updated Mac mini with M1 Pro or M1 Max chips or entry-level MacBook Pro could also steal the show. Stay tuned for all of Apple's announcements.