Apple discontinued the popular iPhone 8
and iPhone 8 Plus last week after 31 months of sales. The former was replaced immediately by the newer and cheaper iPhone SE
but, despite early rumors, it turns out the larger device might not be substituted until 2021.
The iPhone SE Plus won't arrive until March 2021
According to previous reports, Apple had planned on announcing the iPhone SE and iPhone SE Plus simultaneously before it encountered production issues with the latter which ultimately threw a spanner in the works. New information received by Jon Prosser
suggests that may have not been the case, though.
Several sources have told the YouTuber that Apple has purposely scheduled the iPhone SE Plus for the first quarter of 2021 rather than 2020. That lines up with earlier reports from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo who mentioned a similar timeline.
Prosser now expects the iPhone SE Plus announcement to take place in March 2021, possibly at a big press event like the one planned for the iPhone 9 before COVID-19 led to its cancelation. But despite waiting nearly a full year to unveil the device, no major internal upgrades are expected.
The iPhone SE Plus should be based on either the iPhone 8 Plus or iPhone XR
The Plus-branded smartphone will retain the A13 Bionic featured inside the standard iPhone SE. The differentiating factors will come on the outside because, as the name indicates, it will feature a noticeably bigger display.
There is no word just yet on which smartphone it will be based, but Ming-Chi Kuo has previously mentioned the possibility of either an iPhone 8 Plus-like device or an iPhone XR
-like alternative. That means buyers should expect either a 5.5-inch or 6.1-inch LCD displays.
also believes the iPhone SE Plus will make its debut in early 2021. But he suspects there’s still a lot of work to do, which means there is plenty of time for plans to change. More concrete details should emerge later this year.
The Smart Connector is coming on a future iPhone, but not this year
On an unrelated note, recent iPhone 12 Pro Max renders based on CAD files dating back to December 2019 showed what appeared to be some sort of iPad Pro
-like Smart Connector. Unfortunately, the information received by Jon Prosser indicates that it won't be happening on the final product.
Apple has zero plans for a Smart Connector on the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro lineup but is actively looking into an implementation that could be used on the first portless iPhone, which may well be the 2021 iPhone 13 Pro Max. Specific details aren't yet available, but Prosser thinks it will enable a MagSafe-like magnetic charging system.
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max CAD file (December 2019)
Buyers, therefore, won't be forced to purchase a compatible Qi charger or an AirPower charging mat, but the change still allows for the removal of the Lightning connector. Whether the Smart Connector-like feature will work with accessories too remains to be seen.
But one thing that does seem certain is that Apple won't be introducing support for the Apple Pencil
. The Tim Cook-led company is staying true to what founder Steve Jobs said all those years ago for the foreseeable future.