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Goodbye, iPhone SE – Apple cancels plans for a sequel

Apple doesn’t often cater to the low end of the market, preferring to produce premium devices with premium price tags. But since its initial release in 2016, iPhone SE has offered the closest thing Apple users could get to a “budget” model. Three generations of iPhone SE have been and gone, and they proved popular with those who prefer smaller handsets or don’t have the budget for the latest models.

But alas, according to a report from the usually-but-not-always-correct analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple has ditched plans for a fourth-generation iPhone SE. “The supply chain has received instructions from Apple indicating that the production and shipment plans for the 2024 iPhone SE 4 have been canceled rather than delayed,” he says in a Medium post.

That’s bad news for fans of the SE line, especially considering the iPhone 13 mini sold poorly enough that it was axed from the iPhone 14 lineup. That doesn’t leave much in the way of smaller or cheaper iPhones for those who prioritize those things.

This news also makes it likely Apple will stick with Qualcomm as modem providers for a little longer – Apple has been developing an in-house modem, and the next iPhone SE was expected to act as a test bed for the tech.

For what its worth, we always thought iPhone SE was a great product. We wrote in 2017 that the first-gen model was Apple’s best iPhone, claimed the second was all the iPhone you really need, and the third was a tad boring but prioritized the right things.

Of course, there was a four-year gap between the first- and second-generation iPhone SE models, so we could yet see a return for a tiny handset in 2025 – never say never. And Apple may have other plans for a low-to-mid range device. But if these supplier reports are accurate, it might be time to say goodbye.