Apple refreshing the fairly popular iPhone SE this 2018 remains on shaky ground, and if indeed a new model will materialize, it's not expected to generate earth-shaking excitement.
According to KGI Securities analyst Ming-chi Kuo, a second-generation iPhone SE on Apple's 2018 pipeline is hard to believe if the reports are true that the company plans to unveil three new flagship phones in the last quarter of the year. It will be the same case in 2017, when the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 series were rolled out, and the analyst said Apple is unlikely to repeat the missteps committed in the past.
Kuo, who has a sterling record of releasing spot-on forecasts on Apple products and services, recalled that when the company's 2017's flagship models came out, it was revealed that "Apple doesn't have enough resources available for development," to the company's embarrassment.
The flaw on Apple's part were evident when the iPhone X shipment was delayed by more than a month, which was perceived as the chief reason the handset model performed below par. The analyst said the iPhone maker is certainly not inclined to see a repeat of the same scenario, which could mean the shelving of the plan for an iPhone SE 2.
"With three new models in the pipeline for the second half of 2018, we believe Apple may have used up its development resources. Also, we think the firm will do all it can to avoid repeating the mistake of a shipment delay for the three new models. As such, we believe Apple is unlikely to have enough spare resources to develop a new iPhone model for launch in 2Q18," Kuo wrote on a research note obtained by MacRumors.
Slim Chance Of Refresh
The KGI analyst, however, is not totally ruling out the likelihood of Apple upgrading the iPhone SE, which the company said proved a sleeper hit. Kuo said in the event the SE gets a sequel this year, the changes to be seen are unlikely to massively impress.
Presumably, the SE version 2 will have the same industrial design that Apple first used with the iPhone 5 in 2012, meaning there will be no jaw-dropping design and feature bumps such as 3D Touch, Face ID, and wireless charging.
At best, the iPhone SE 2 could get a faster, more powerful, and more efficient processor. Likely, it will be the same A10 SoC that was deployed first with the iPhone 7 series, though it remains to be seen if the 4-inch iOS phone will see a RAM increase to 3 GB.
In any case, Apple extending the life of its compact iPhone model is hardly a surprise. As mentioned, the iPhone SE managed to attract a loyal following, and credit goes to its more-than-decent specs and functionalities. It also helped that the sticker price now stands at $349 for the basic model with 64 GB of storage, which will be the same asking price and packaging for the rumored 2018 edition.