iPhone SE redesign could feature a hole-punch camera — but not soon

iPhone SE 2020 in hand showing the back of the phone
(Image credit: Future)

The iPhone SE doesn't garner the same level of attention as Apple's flagship phones. We've already seen countless leaks about the iPhone 13, but the iPhone SE was a big seller for Apple last year.

Given the level of success that Apple saw with the iPhone SE (2020), it's safe to assume that the company isn't going to abandon the affordable iPhone and a new rumor from display analyst Ross Young points to multiple iPhone SE models in the works, but fans will have to be patient (via MacRumors).

According to Young, the next update to the iPhone SE will come in 2022 and will feature the same 4.7-inch display found in the current model that traces back to the iPhone 8. The big upgrade mentioned for this one will be 5G, although by 2022 that will be much less noteworthy. 

From there, things get more interesting as Ross indicates that a 6.1-inch model is also in the pipeline, due to launch in 2023. This version would use a hole-punch display as we see with most Android phones, rather than a notch. 

The 2023 refresh rumor is a new one, but the lack of a 2021 iPhone SE aligns with previous reports from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a research note back covered by MacRumors in March, he indicated that the new model would be coming in the first half of 2022 and that it would feature largely unchanged specs while adding 5G support.

If true, this leaves open some room for Google's Pixel 5a this year to grab more of that affordable $350-$450 market. Like Apple, it found quite a bit of success in this range over the last couple of years. A Pixel 5a may win over some customers that aren't interested in waiting another year for a nearly identical iPhone SE, especially if Google can deliver 5G in this model.

Sean Riley

Sean Riley has been covering tech professionally for over a decade now. Most of that time was as a freelancer covering varied topics including phones, wearables, tablets, smart home devices, laptops, AR, VR, mobile payments, fintech, and more.  Sean is the resident mobile expert at Laptop Mag, specializing in phones and wearables, you'll find plenty of news, reviews, how-to, and opinion pieces on these subjects from him here. But Laptop Mag has also proven a perfect fit for that broad range of interests with reviews and news on the latest laptops, VR games, and computer accessories along with coverage on everything from NFTs to cybersecurity and more.