Not everyone wants a big phone, and the latest rumours point to Apple returning to a 4in screen, the size used for the iPhone 5, 5S and 5C. AppleInsider says that analyst Ming-Chi Kuo’s predictions in the past have been accurate and his latest is that there will be a smaller option in Apple’s 2016 lineup to cater for the demand which still exists for smaller phones.
Various sources suggest that Apple’s release date will be moved from the 15 March to 21 March, which will be only a day before their hearing with the FBI in the US.
Update: 2 March 2016: Latest image renders of the rumoured 4in iPhone.
iPhone 5se: Name
If the phone is released on 21 March 2016, it would not make any logical sense for it to appear under the iPhone 7 tag as it is due for release in September 2016. This means that if it were to be released in March 2016, we could see it named under a different name. The current rumours around the phone suggest it will be named as the iPhone 5se, and not as the rumours initially suggested as the iPhone 6c, iPhone 7c, iPhone 5e nor even as the iPhone 7/6 Mini.
We find the name of the device to be a little odd, as we would have expected it to fall under the iPhone 6 or 7 range, rather than the older iPhone 5 generation line. If the rumours do end up being correct, then we will be a little surprised by Apple’s decision to keep the iPhone 5se – it will definitely be the first iPhone with two characters after the number.
iPhone 5se: Specifications
If Apple does make a 4in iPhone, it’s pretty easy to guess that it will have the similar specifications as the previous iPhone models.
- Display: We see it measuring the same size as the iPhone 5s, which will mean a 4in phone. We don’t see the phone coming out with 3D Touch, a feature found in the lastest iPhones.
- Processor: Latest sources have confirmed that the iPhone 5se will house the A9 chip found in the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus.
- RAM: We predict the phone will come with 1GB of RAM DDR3, identical to the iPhone 6’s specifications.
- Storage: It’s safe to assume the phone will come with a minimum of 16GB. However little is known about its maximum capacity. We don’t feel a 128GB variant will be released, but we could potentially see a 64GB version of the phone. We feel Apple will have a 16GB and 64GB model only, similar to what is currently offered with the iPhone 6.
- Camera: We expect to see the 8Mp rear-facing and 1.2Mp front facing cameras found in the iPhone 6 to be ported over to the iPhone 5se.
- Battery size: Batteries are always a talking point, and with the iPhone 5se rumours, there are also speculations about its battery size, where some Chinese manufacturers are reporting a 1642mAh battery, which would make it a smaller battery over the iPhone 6 (1810mAh) and iPhone 6s (1715mAh), but larger than its predecessor the iPhone 5c (1510mAh).
- Connectivity: We expect the phone to come with an NFC chip, Bluetooth 4.2 and hopefully the enhanced 802.11ac WiFi chip found within the iPhone 6s. These hardware components are expected to be found inside the iPhone 5se, purely based on the demand from consumers and constantly evolving technology.
- Design: It is safe to assume that the iPhone 5se will include a 3.5mm headphone jack, as its design is predicted to be identical to the iPhone 6.
- Available Colours: The iPhone 5se is expected to be released in the same colours that were found with the iPhone 6s: Silver, Gold, Rose Gold, and Space Gray. Recently, reports have also suggested that there will be a ‘Hot Pink’ or ‘Bright Pink’ version available of the iPhone 5se.
- Other features: It’s unclear if we will see it come with Touch ID, but it seems now likely for it to be included.
iPhone 5se: Other rumours
On 29 February 2016, a few image renders were created by Martin Hajek, who combined the various different rumoured iPhone 5se designs and created interesting 3D renders (see below).
If you’re interested in more image renders, they can be also found here (see image below).
On 24 February 2016 images leaked from OnLeaks, suggest that prototypes of the new 4in iPhone that were tested by Apple.
According to the image above, we Apple seem to be testing iPhones which look very similar to the iPhone 5s’ design and yet also incorporates certain iPhone 6/6s design elements.
The most interesting part of these leaked images is the fact that both versions come with a 3.5mm headphone jack and furthermore, the speaker design seems to have shifted from an uneven 5s design, to a more symmetric speaker design. Might we finally see dual downward-firing stereo speakers from Apple? This would be a great addition for those looking to improve the overall sound quality and loudness of the iPhone’s sound output.
Update (25/02/2016): A new image render from OnLeaks have leaked, suggesting the two prototypes pictured are extremely similar to the iPhone 5s’ design and yet has certain elements of the iPhone 6 line’s design. This suggests Apple has utilised their old iPhone design and thrown in hardware found in the 6/6s line.
From the leaked renders, the images seem to suggest that the 3.5mm jack is still present and that Apple was thinking of two separate speaker designs, whereby the newest image seems to suggest a smaller, more symmetric speaker design. Might we see dual downward-firing speakers from Apple? Time will tell.
For the sake of comparison, we have left the older rumours below.
Previously, there was an image floating around the internet (see below), which suggested a leaked photo of the iPhone 5se. We cannot verify if this is the actual phone itself and it has now been suggested that the iamge is fake.
As with any rumour, take it with a pinch of salt, as earlier in 2016 a video of the iPhone 5se was supposedly leaked and genuine, but then later turned out to be fake.
On 27 January 2016, we were informed by Mobile Fun of their Ringke Fusion case in Smoke Black and Crystal View that’s been listed on their site for £14.99. The interesting part to note here is not the availability of the cases, but rather the new 4in iPhone being named on Mobile Fun as the iPhone 6c and not the presumed iPhone 5se. So far, no pictures are provided of the cases, so we cannot get an inkling on the look of the iPhone.
Finally, according to a Japanese financial newspaper Nikkei (via AppleInsider), Apple started its production for the 4in phone over a year ago. Little is known if Apple was only making prototypes or the final product.