The iPhone SE is achieving exactly what Apple intended

The iPhone SE is achieving exactly what Apple intended
Apple switched up its market strategy in April by launching the updated iPhone SE (2020) for only $399 in the United States. Some people were skeptical about the decision to launch a so-called budget iPhone, but new market data shows that Apple made the right call.

The iPhone SE is keeping people inside the ecosystem


A recent survey conducted by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP) of customers based in the United States that recently purchased Apple products reveals that the iPhone SE (2020) is proving to be popular among users of older iPhone models.

Despite being released towards the end of April, the new iPhone SE (2020) still accounted for an impressive 19% of all US iPhone purchases in the second quarter of 2020. That makes it the third most popular smartphone in Apple’s entire lineup behind the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro duo.

A whopping 73% of all iPhone SE (2020) buyers in the US were upgrading from an iPhone that was launched before 2017. The list includes models such as the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6S, the original iPhone SE, and even the iPhone 5.

The rate of upgrades among older users has more than doubled versus the rest of Apple’s lineup. For reference, only 32% of those acquiring other models were upgrading from iPhones that are at least 3 years old.

The iPhone SE (2020) has, therefore, successfully locked some of the most stubborn Apple customers into the ecosystem for several more years, exactly as the Cupertino giant intended when it launched the device. 

The iPhone 11 was still the most popular model


The iPhone 11 was, once again, the most popular model in the past quarter. It accounted for around 34% of all US iPhone purchases between April and June, therefore marking the third consecutive quarter in which the $699 iPhone was the most popular.

That share of the market isn’t as high as that of the iPhone XR during the same period a year ago – it accounted for roughly 48% of shipments at the time – but that doesn’t mean the iPhone 11 is selling less.

Apple currently has the iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone SE (2020) in its lineup, both of which have proven to be successes. Last year, the company was selling the iPhone XS and iPhone 8, which were much less attractive and popular options.

The iPhone 11 Pro series was popular too


Following the iPhone 11 in second place was the iPhone 11 Pro series, which includes the smaller iPhone 11 Pro and bigger iPhone 11 Pro Max. These premium flagships accounted for roughly 31% of all sales during the quarter.

Those results make them considerably more popular than their predecessors, the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, which only accounted for around 20% of US sales in the same quarter twelve months ago.

The iPhone 8 and iPhone XR were enough for some people 


Apple completed its lineup with the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, which were officially discontinued two weeks into the quarter upon the introduction of the iPhone SE (2020), and the notch-bearing iPhone XR

CIRP reports that the iPhone 8 series accounted for roughly 7% of purchases during the quarter. The iPhone XR, on the other hand, was slightly more popular with a decent 9% of the US iPhone market.

Related phones

iPhone SE (2020)
  • Display 4.7 inches
    1334 x 750 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP (Single camera)
    7 MP front
  • Hardware Apple A13 Bionic
    3GB RAM
  • Storage 64GB, not expandable
  • Battery 1821 mAh
  • OS iOS 13.x

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