Production starts on Apple iPhone 5se; case manufacturers gamble on its looks

Production starts on Apple iPhone 5se; case manufacturers gamble on its looks
Out of Japan today comes news about the 4-inch Apple iPhone 5se. The word is that the handset is starting to roll off the assembly line as Apple looks to build up inventory prior to its official unveiling expected in March. Apple is reportedly aiming the device at emerging markets. Those are regions where the full-sized iPhone models are too expensive for consumers. The same report states that Apple had finished developing the 4-inch unit early last year, and had been waiting for the perfect opportunity to produce and market the handset.

Speaking of the iPhone 5se, a number of case makers are trying to decide if the 4-inch iPhone will look like the Apple iPhone 5s or a smaller version of the Apple iPhone 6. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has an outstanding track record making forecasts about the iPhone or iPad, expects the 4-inch device to resemble the iPhone 6. Most of the case makers agree. Rearth USA has released renders of a case for what it is calling the Apple iPhone 6c.

These companies are taking huge risks by speculating on the design of the phone. Huge amounts of money can be made by guessing right and being among the first to market a case for the model. On the other hand, a wrong guess can cripple an accessories maker. It should be pointed out that Apple hasn't officially announced that a 4-inch phone is coming.

The device is expected to be powered by the A9 chipset and carry support for always-on Siri. We could see an 8MP or 12MP rear-facing camera and Live Photos. Despite the inclusion of the latter, the handset will not feature 3D Touch. The iPhone 5se will also sport NFC so that it can support Apple Pay. Apple is hoping to increase the use of its mobile payment system by offering it in emerging markets. The company gets a piece of each credit card transaction that uses Apple Pay, and a flat rate when a debit card is employed

Expected to be offered in 16GB and 64GB versions, the 4-inch iPhone could be priced at $450. The iPhone 5se will most likely replace the Apple iPhone 6 and Apple iPhone 6 Plus in Apple's lineup once the Apple iPhone 7 is announced.

source: Nikkei (translated), MobileFun via AppleInsider

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13 Comments

1. darkkjedii

Posts: 30971; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

They're not gambling, they know what's coming. Cases are always available at launch.

2. Unordinary unregistered

Did you not see the previous "benchmark" article? I guess it wasn't obvious that someone over at PA is giving out some really strong company pot.

4. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

yeah right, all known case company get dummy phone complete with all port and button so they can make case which will snap fit with upcoming phone.. they dont need to gamble, or race for anything... just who on earth that buy some case just because it available on market first? lol

3. baldilocks

Posts: 1494; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

I remember when they guessed on the iPhone 5 a few years ago and were WAY off. I still have a couple of the cases.

5. Carlitos

Posts: 664; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

So it's aimed at emerging markets? I wonder how low they'll price it. Even still, i doubt it will compete with the plethora of cheap android devices out there. And i personally think 4inches is far too small, 4.3inches at least.

7. baldilocks

Posts: 1494; Member since: Dec 14, 2008

The original 3.5" iPhone was laughed at in 2007 for having a screen that many thought was way too big. It's all relative.

13. An.Awesome.Guy

Posts: 636; Member since: Jan 12, 2015

Some of the people who I know still prefers 4 inch screen over their 5 inch phones but they sacrifice that. Also if you think about people who don't really use apps but just want to use a good phone, they would prefer 4 inch phones.

6. Baracus

Posts: 223; Member since: Sep 15, 2012

If I stamped an Apple logo on one of my constipated turds PA would declare it the best thing ever and would have 400 cases before it's flushed.

8. SemiFinal

Posts: 117; Member since: Jul 26, 2014

Obvious troll is obvious...

12. Baracus

Posts: 223; Member since: Sep 15, 2012

Lol! NO

9. SkyfallWalker

Posts: 73; Member since: Jan 28, 2016

I hope it aint too expensive.

10. SkyfallWalker

Posts: 73; Member since: Jan 28, 2016

I hope it aint too expensive.

11. oozz009

Posts: 520; Member since: Jun 22, 2015

Of course it will be expensive, it's Apple lol. In any case, I'm glad that the 4-inch is back.

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