Apple has unveiled a smaller, cheaper iPhone, called iPhone SE, aimed at new buyers, especially in emerging markets.
Touted as an upgrade for the older iPhone 5S model, the 16GB version of the smartphone will cost $399 while the 64GB is priced at $499.
Faster and advanced
The new phone, with Apple’s A9 chip, is much faster than Apple’s previous attempt at an entry-level phone, launched in 2013.
- Based on 64-bit A9 chip, it offers faster VoLTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and run the latest iOS 9.3.
- It comes with a 12MP iSight camera with Focus Pixel, Retina Flash, Live Photos with support for 4K video recording.
Apple is adding the 4-inch display to its lineup of smartphones after a gap of nearly two and a half years.
It also runs Apple Pay and comes in the wildly popular rose gold colour.
The $399 starting price is well below the $649 for the current top iPhone model without a contract, which is beyond the reach of many.
Many see iPhone SE as a damage control measure for Apple, whose iPhone sales growth hit an all-time low last quarter.
It is also the first time that Apple is unveiling an iPhone in the middle of its usual iPhone launch cycles, i.e. between iPhone 6S and 7.
To bolster sales, Apple has been looking towards emerging markets like India & China for long, though its sales in China recently hit a wall while those in India continue to grow.
The starting price for the iPhone SE is Rs. 30,000, Apple said. It will be available for purchase in India starting early April.
The prices in Middle East has not been announced yet, but is estimated to start at AED 1600 in UAE, where it launches in April.
Apple also announced the updated iOS9.3 version.