iPhone SE 4 design is still up in the air

iPhone SE 4 design is still up in the air

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iPhone XR test
iPhone SE 4 might look much like the iPhone XR, but Apple is also considering other designs.
Photo: Apple

Apple is reportedly sticking with a two-year replacement cycle on its budget handset line. That means the iPhone SE 4 won’t be out until 2024, according to a reliable source.

The launch is apparently far enough away that Apple hasn’t settled on a final design.

iPhone SE 4 on course for an 2024 launch

The iPhone SE 3 is the most affordable iOS handset at $429. It doesn’t have cutting-edge features so generally doesn’t make headlines, but it puts iPhone into the reach of millions of customers who couldn’t afford the $799 model.

The third model in the SE line came out in spring 2022, two years after the second-gen version. That’s a pattern Apple reportedly will stick with. The fourth in the line is “not expected until 2024,” according to Ross Young with Display Supply Chain Consultants.

Screen size unknown

With a couple years before the launch, the design is still in flux. “We hear Apple has not yet finalized its display choice on the SE4,” Young said via Twitter. “It is believed to be considering 6.1″ OLEDs from 2 suppliers as well as 5.7″-6.1″ LCDs from 2 suppliers.”

The current version is built around a 4.7-inch screen. Increasing the size to 5.7 inches or more would almost certainly require kicking out the Home button. Especially as the SE 3 is the only current iOS device that’s still has a Home button – it’s been almost completely phased out.

Young is a display expert with contacts in companies that supply screens to Apple. These have enabled him to make accurate predictions in the past about Apple’s future plans.

Earlier reports from other sources have indicated that Apple intends to base the design of iPhone SE 4 on the the iPhone XR from 2018. If true, that would give it 6.1-inch LCD, so the old and new leaks aren’t completely contradictory.

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