Apple’s upcoming new 4-inch iPhone, the iPhone 5se as detailed in a recent report, is apparently in production, and will target emerging markets.
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The news comes from Japanese site Nikkei, which has learned from unnamed officials that the handset has started production. Furthermore, Nikkei says that the smaller iPhone will be cheaper than the iPhone 6s and that Apple is looking to increase its user base in emerging markets with the help of a more affordable handset.
However, don’t expect the iPhone 5se to be the affordable new iPhone you’ve been waiting for all this year. 9to5Mac’s trustworthy Mark Gurman said the device would simply replace the iPhone 5s in Apple’s lineup. That means that yes, the iPhone 5se will be the cheapest iPhone the company will sell this year, but that doesn’t necessarily make it cheap.
The phone is expected to offer buyers the same hardware available in the iPhone 6 series, but in a more compact body, according to recent rumors. The device is expected to be unveiled during a March media event, together with an iPad Air 3 model and new Apple Watch-related products.
Apple announced earlier this week that there are over 1 billion iOS devices in use, but at the same time, it did say it expects an iPhone sales decline in the March quarter.
A cheaper iPhone could help the company target buyers who would otherwise choose Android-powered mid-ranged devices.