What Can We Expect from the Third-gen iPhone SE?

In 2020, after waiting for four good years, Apple launched an updated version of its iPhone SE but still maintained the exact name “iPhone SE.” It was a bit confusing differentiating between the two though Apple refers to the second model as the 2nd-gen iPhone SE when necessary to differentiate the 2020 model. Most people prefer to call it the iPhone SE 2 or iPhone SE (2020).

Although it’s not likely that Apple would release an update on the SE iPhone in 2021 we are quite certain that Apple won’t wait another 4 years before updating its most reasonably priced iPhone model. According to a recent rumour, Apple may release a third-generation iPhone SE before June of 2022. Leaks suggest that the “iPhone SE 3” (or iPhone SE (3rd-generation), or iPhone SE (2022)) may arrive with the exact well-known retro design but with huge internal changes, such as a new SoC and 5G connectivity.

Here’s a summary of what we can expect from the Third-Gen iPhone SE and everything we know about it so far:

Display and Design

The latest iPhone SE is expected to physically look like its predecessors, which were designed like the shell of the iPhone 8. Hence, the third-gen iPhone SE may “look like an iPhone 8 refreshed version” but with new components. The iPhone SE 3 may still rely on the 4.7in. LCD, which was used in the iPhone SE 2. Hence, this new model is expected to operate natively at 1,334px x 750px, which is a much lower resolution than what the iPhone 13 mini offers.

5G Connectivity

Apple is expected to replace the A13 Bionic in iPhone SE 2 with the latest A15 Bionic. This means that the new iPhone SE will support 5G connectivity, a feature launched in the iPhone 12 series. The A15 Bionic chip will also bring other benefits, such as a revised display engine, a faster Neural Engine, and a new ISP. The iPhone SE 3 may also use the Qualcomm X60 modem – the same modem in iPhone 13.


Apple is known to always use the very newest Apple A-series processor used in the previous higher-priced iPhone models and its iPhone SE. Hence, it is expected that the third-gen iPhone SE would be fitted with the same A15 processor as the recently launched iPhone 13 – this was also reported by Macotakara and Nikkei Asia. However, another report claimed that the A14 processor would be used instead. Either way, both processors are going to make the iPhone SE 3 faster, of great value, and qualify it for iOS updates for a long period.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)


The much anticipated iPhone SE 3 is likely to feature the same solo 12 MP wide-angle back camera like the iPhone SE 2, together with a single 12MP front camera. The iPhone SE 2 has a 7 MP front camera, which is expected to be upgraded to 12 MP in the new model. Though we shouldn’t expect massive improvements in the camera quality.

Price and Release

In terms of the price, we do not know and can’t say what the iPhone SE 3 will cost. One thing we are sure of is that it would be less pricey than any recent flagship iPhone model. As for the release date, it’s on record that Apple launched the previous two iPhone SE versions in the first half of the year, and Apple would likely continue with the trend. Hence, the expected 3rd-gen model may come before Jun of 2022.

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