iPhone SE Plus: release date, price, size, specifications and rumors

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There was a big omission when Apple launched the iPhone SE 2020: a big brother. While the new iPhone SE replaces the 4.7-inch iPhone 8 with the same screen, Apple also removed the 5.5-inch iPhone 8 Plus in conjunction with the launch of the SE. So, at least for now, there’s no big screen version of the most economical phone in the business.

But that doesn’t mean Apple isn’t working on an iPhone SE Plus behind the scenes. Apple will release an iPhone SE Plus in the second half of next year, according to a reputable analyst. It sounds like a long time, but it is possible that Apple may go up the calendar.

IPhone SE Plus release date

(Image credit: Hubert Jarechowicz / ConceptsiPhone)

Here’s the bad news. As reported by 9to5Mac, the iPhone SE Plus may not launch until the second half of 2021. Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of TF International Securities reports this. Earlier, Kuo predicted that the iPhone SE Plus would have a release date in the first half of 2021, but it would have been postponed.

Why the delay? This could be due to the coronavirus pandemic, which would have reduced mass production of the iPhone 12 by a month. In addition, Apple apparently has four iPhone 12 phones in the works, so it’s unlikely to want to rush a new, lower-priced iPhone that could cannibalize sales of several flagship products.

IPhone SE Plus Price

There are no firm rumors about the possible price of an iPhone SE Plus yet, but if history is a guide, we expect Apple to charge about $ 100 more than the iPhone SE. For example, the iPhone SE Plus may cost $ 499 for 64 GB of storage. Jumping up to 128 GB would likely cost $ 50 more, or $ 549, and a 256 GB model would cost you $ 649.

IPhone SE Plus size and design

(Image credit: Shaun Lucas / Tom’s Guide)

Here’s where it gets difficult. While some reports indicate that the iPhone SE Plus has a screen size of 5.5 inches, others say it may have a 6.1-inch panel. Much depends on Apple’s decision to recycle the design of the iPhone 8 Plus or to go in a new direction.

According to MacRumors, the iPhone SE Plus will not have Face ID but will instead have a Touch ID sensor built into the power button on the right side of the phone. This would make a 6.1-inch iPhone SE Plus much more likely and closer to a full screen design.

Another benefit: if Apple decided to forgo both the Touch ID home button on the screen as well as Face ID, the iPhone SE Plus would likely have a smaller notch for the front camera.

As for the screen itself, we expect an LCD as opposed to an OLED screen, which would allow Apple to keep the price low. All four iPhone 12 models would have OLED screens, so an iPhone SE Plus iPhone would make sense.

IPhone SE Plus Specifications

Apple may very well decide to stick with its current A13 Bionic processor which is inside the iPhone SE for the larger iPhone SE Plus. But if the company really holds back until the second half of 2021, it’s more likely that the iPhone SE Plus will get the same A14 Bionic chip that should power the iPhone 12.

It would follow the same model that Apple established with the iPhone SE. Apple would likely include the same storage options, with capacities of 64 GB, 128 GB and 256 GB.

IPhone SE Plus cameras

(Image credit: Future)

The iPhone SE works with a single 12-megapixel rear camera and a 7-megapixel selfie camera on the front, but it exploits the computer photography features of the A13 Bionic chip so well that it’s one of best camera phones for the money. You get portrait mode, intelligent HDR and extended dynamic range in 4K video.

The iPhone SE Plus could be even more versatile. The iPhone 8 Plus includes both a standard lens and a telephoto lens for optical zoom. And Apple can follow a similar path for an iPhone SE Plus.

However, Apple has gone in a different direction with the iPhone 11, giving the phone two lenses but using an ultra-wide camera instead of a telephoto lens. And it’s safe to assume that Apple will stay the course for the iPhone 12. So an iPhone SE Plus will likely have two rear cameras, although it remains to be seen whether Apple will follow the telephoto or ultra wide path.

What I would expect from an iPhone SE Plus is the Night mode. This is one of the biggest missing features of the regular iPhone SE, and there is nothing to suggest that Apple couldn’t add it to its current budget phone, let alone its big cousin. Night mode has more to do with computer photography and machine learning than hardware.

IPhone SE Plus battery life and charge

iPhone SE 2020

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

The battery life of the iPhone SE was not impressive in our tests, as its small 1,821mAh battery only lasted 9 hours and 18 minutes in our web browsing test. It’s well behind the 11 hour mark, which you need to make our best phone battery life list.

The iPhone 8 Plus contains a 2,675 mAh battery, which lasted 11 hours 16 minutes on a charge. So the iPhone SE Plus could easily be one of the most durable phones, especially for the money. In addition, Apple could give the phone a slightly larger battery, and a 5-nanometer A14 Bionic processor would likely be even more efficient than today’s 7nm A13 chip.

When it comes to charging, I really hope Apple drops Lightning for USB-C by the time the iPhone SE Plus rolls out – but I wouldn’t bet on it. You can get the same slow 5-watt load out of the box, which is a disappointment but not too much of a compromise for a mid-range phone. Fast charging in this scenario would cost more with an 18-watt USB-C charger and a USB-C to Lightning cable.

Like the iPhone SE, the iPhone SE Plus would likely support Qi wireless charging – so it should work with one of the best wireless chargers on the market.

iPhone SE Plus Outlook

With questionable demand for premium flagship phones due to economic uncertainty, an iPhone SE Plus would provide buyers with a viable large-screen phone with all the features they need at a reasonable price. As good as the regular iPhone SE, some users just don’t want to handle a small 4.7-inch screen. If Apple does develop an iPhone SE Plus, it could be deadly, but we may have to wait before it materializes.

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