While we are patiently waiting for the new iPhone 7 to appear in the fall of this year, Apple might surprise us with a new release. The new iPhone 5e, with just a 4-inch display, is meant to please potential customers seeking an iPhone with a screen smaller than 4.7 or 5.5-inches. It is an upgrade of the iPhone 5s that was first released in fall 2013, said to support Apple’s latest features, like Apple Pay and Live Photos. Minor design changes and more color options are expected.
The new 5e coming up in March shares quite a few hardware specs with iPhone 6s, including an A9 chip for increased CPU and graphics performance. Other than that, it will feature a 12 MP rear-facing camera, rather than an 8 MP sensor as previously rumored.
While in terms of design, 5e is said to stay loyal to the appearance of his older brother 5s, rumors say the new phone will feature 2.5D cover glass with curved edges like the iPhone 6 and newer.
What’s more, the new iPhone will also rely on 16GB and 64GB storage capacities, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2 and a slightly larger 1,642 mAh battery, if compared to the iPhone 5s.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that “while the new model may not generate huge sales, Apple still has good reasons to launch. These are: (1) still-existing demand for 4-inch smartphones. We estimate 15-17mn 4-inch iPhones will be shipped in 2015. We estimate the new 4-inch model will account for 8-9% of total iPhone shipments in 2016; (2) expected price of US$400-500, with the aim of penetrating emerging markets and consumers on smaller budgets; and (3) adoption of NFC will support Apple Pay, benefiting the ecosystem.”
According to macrumors, Apple is expected to announce the new 4-inch iPhone at a media event set for March 15th, alongside the new 9.7-inch iPad Pro.