According to a new report, Apple may not be releasing the iPhone SE 4 next year. Analysts from Barclays, Blayne Curtis, and Tom O’Malley, have stated that after engaging in discussions with companies within Apple’s supply chain, it appears that the absence of a new iPhone SE may point to a delay in Apple’s rumored in-house 5G modem development.
Apple’s potential modem delay impacts iPhone SE 4 launch
The speculations surrounding Apple’s in-house modem project have been ongoing since 2018 when Apple reportedly started working on its own 5G modem. In 2019, the company further solidified its efforts by acquiring the majority of Intel’s smartphone modem business.
However, the recent analysis from Barclays suggests that the in-house modem might not be ready for implementation in the near future.
Earlier this year TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo revealed that mass production of Apple’s modem was expected to begin no earlier than 2025. This timeline implies that even the upcoming iPhone 16 models, anticipated to launch next year, will continue to rely on Qualcomm modems. Adding onto Kuo’s prediction, tech analyst Jeff Pu claimed that the iPhone SE 4 with Apple’s custom 5G model would debut in 2025.
Kuo had also indicated that the iPhone SE 4 would likely adopt a similar design to the standard iPhone 14 model, featuring a 6.1-inch OLED display and Face ID. However, with the potential delay in Apple’s in-house modem, it remains uncertain whether Apple will eventually proceed with releasing the iPhone SE with a Qualcomm modem.
The current iPhone SE, which hit the market in March 2022, boasts a 4.7-inch LCD display, Touch ID, 5G capability, a 12-megapixel rear camera, and the powerful A15 Bionic chip. Priced starting at $429 in the U.S., it stands as one of Apple’s more affordable iPhone options. The original iPhone SE was launched in 2016, followed by the second-generation model in 2020.
While it is disappointing news for fans of the iPhone SE series, Apple’s decision not to release a new model in 2024 suggests that the company may be prioritizing the development of its in-house modem technology. It will be interesting to see how this decision unfolds and whether Apple will integrate its proprietary modem in future iterations of the iPhone SE.