Apple's wallet-friendly iPhone SE (wallet-friendly by Apple standards, that is) could make a return to stores according to a report from the Economic Daily News in China. The news outlet's report says that Wistron, the Indian company responsible for building the current iPhone SE is looking for new land to expand its factory and supply chain to make building an iPhone SE 2 a reality.
Wistron has already been called upon by Apple to take over manufacturing duties of the iPhone 8 alongside the iPhone SE, while Foxconn, Apple's longstanding manufacturing partner, handles the iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X.
When Apple launched the current iPhone SE in 2016, it was a surprise hit. It lets fans of the smaller 4-inch screen retain the pocket-friendly size, but benefit from near-flagship specs. We were surprised Apple didn't realise a follow-up model alongside the iPhone 8 and iPhone X at this year's WWDC.
If a second-generation model were to be launched in 2018, we'd expect it to take the best of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8, meaning at least an A10 processor. The A11 Bionic processor in the iPhone 8 would be nice, but we wouldn't be surprised if it didn't feature in the much cheaper iPhone SE 2.
A camera upgrade should be in order too, hopefully to the most recent 12-megapixel sensor and 3D Touch would be a welcome addition after it was left out of the current iPhone SE.
If it keeps the same 4-inch design that was last seen on the iPhone 5S, it could mean the Touch ID home button will live to fight another day, after it's expected to be removed from the flagship lineup entirely next year, in favour of Face ID. The Economic Daily News cites foreign sources as saying the iPhone SE 2 could launch in the first half of 2018 for $450.
With news surrounding an iPhone SE 2 being pretty thin on the ground until now, we'll take this new report with a pinch of salt for now, but we're certainly excited by the idea of a new budget iPhone.