Apple readying a new 4-inch iPhone dubbed the "iPhone 5se"

Image: Engadget

There's a flurry of discussion over the next iPhone and while most eyes are on Apple's next flagship smartphone, there's been a few rumors about a smaller iPhone for quite some time now that would cater to a more budget-minded market. It started with an image leak over an unknown iPhone device, which was though to be the 'iPhone 6c', but then that leak and the rumors surrounding it were thought to be dead ends by some. Now, a source is coming forward to say that Apple is indeed making a smaller iPhone, but that it won't be called the iPhone 6c.

According to the source, Apple will be making a lower-tier device that will be dubbed, the 'iPhone 5se'.The device is rumored to offer a 4" display and is inspired by the iPhone 5s, with some upgrades to the innards and shell. The "se" in the name stands for either "special edition" or “enhanced”, and while the device will be cheaper than Apple's current flagship devices, it doesn't intend to be a slouch when it comes to specifications. The source came forward for 9to5Mac and offered a slew of details regarding the iPhone 5se.

  • The chamfered, shiny edges have been replaced with curved glass like on the iPhone 6 and 6s lines

  • The same 8 megapixel rear camera and 1.2 megapixel front camera systems from the iPhone 6

  • Support for larger panoramas and autofocus for video recording

  • Barometer for tracking elevation in the Health app

  • An NFC chip for Apple Pay

  • The A8 and M8 chips from the iPhone 6

  • Bluetooth 4.2, VoLTE, and 802.11ac WiFi chips from the iPhone 6s

  • Live Photos from the iPhone 6s

  • Same Silver, Space Gray, Silver, & Rose Gold color options as the 6s line

While the iPhone 6s introduced 3D Touch, the 5se will not, meaning the implementation of "Live Photos" will likely be powered by some kind of emulation rather than being sensitive to touch pressure. It's expected that the iPhone 5s will be retired and the iPhone 5se will take its place. The 5s currently starts at $0 on contract or $450 outright, so it could be expected that this lower-priced device will fall somewhere near those figures. The device is expected to be revealed in March, with a release to retail in April.

As usual, the source is anonymous, so there could be lots that change before this phone is announced, or this phone could be pulled entirely so take everything with a little skepticism. Still, the release of a smaller iPhone is something that would only help the company, offering a more affordable device that is modern rather than coming off as a hand-me-down. If the source is right, we should be hearing about the iPhone 5se within the next two months.

Source: 9to5Mac

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