The “iPhone SE” is now official as Apple today unveiled the device on stage at its ‘Let us loop you in’ press event in Cupertino.

The new iPhone SE’s major upgrades include Apple’s A9 chip and M9 motion coprocessor, since the design is mostly identical to the iPhone 5s apart from the new rose gold color as expected. Apple noted that the upgraded internals give the iPhone SE the same graphics and processing performance as the iPhone 6S.

The other big upgrade for the iPhone SE, as expected, is a new 4K-capable 12MP iSight camera with Retina Flash, Focus Pixels, True Tone Flash, and a new image signal processor. That gives the device support for 4k video, 1080p at up to 60fps, slo-mo up to 240 fps, and Panoramas up to 63MP.

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Other new specs in the iPhone SE include faster LTE, voice over LTE support, Wi-Fi calling, Bluetooth 4.2, and improved battery life over the iPhone 5s. You’ll also now get support for Live Photos and always-on “Hey Siri”.

And the device has new microphones as well as an NFC chip, which means Apple Pay will be supported unlike with previous 4-inch iPhones.

The much anticipated 4-inch iPhone marks a few firsts for Apple as it introduces the smaller, less expensive iPhone as a rare mid-year iPhone update ahead of what most expect will be the next-generation iPhone 7 launch in the fall later this year. The device comes as an upgrade to the aging iPhone 5S, Apple’s last device to include the 4-inch display size before it upgraded to 4.7 and 5.5-inch displays for the iPhone 6, 6 Plus, and later generations. 

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Apple made a point of noting why it’s introducing the new device, pointing out that it sold around 30 million 4-inch iPhones last year and the fact that there are many users that appreciated the 5s for being either smaller or less expensive. Earlier today we noted that based on data of active iPhone users, the market for a 4-inch device could be as high as almost one third of total users or 36%.

And the iPhone SE will be Apple’s least expensive new iPhone yet starting at just $399 or free on contract with carriers. Get full information on the iPhone SE’s pricing and availability here

Hit up our news hub for all of our coverage from today’s ‘Let us loop you in’ iPhone/iPad event.

Apple Introduces iPhone SE — The Most Powerful Phone with a Four-inch Display

Featuring A9 Chip, Advanced 12-Megapixel iSight Camera & Apple Pay

CUPERTINO, California — March 21, 2016 — Apple® today introduced iPhone® SE, the most powerful phone with a four-inch display, in a beloved compact aluminum design that has been updated with matte-chamfered edges, a color-matched stainless steel Apple logo, and four gorgeous metallic finishes, including rose gold. iPhone SE offers exceptional performance with the same 64-bit A9 chip offered in iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus for blazing fast speeds, longer battery life, faster wireless, a 12-megapixel iSight® camera featuring Live Photos™ and 4K video, and Touch ID® with Apple Pay®.

“iPhone SE is an exciting new idea — we started with a beloved, iconic design and reinvented it from the inside out. The result is the most beautiful and powerful phone with a four-inch display in the world,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “iPhone SE is packed with a stunning four-inch Retina display, advanced 64-bit A9 chip with M9 motion co-processor, longer battery life, 12-megapixel iSight camera with True Tone flash, Live Photos, 4K video, faster LTE and Wi-Fi, and Touch ID with Apple Pay. Everyone who wants a smaller phone is going to love iPhone SE.”

The Most Powerful Phone with a Four-inch Display iPhone SE takes a beloved iPhone design and reinvents it from the inside out, giving customers a powerful, full-featured iPhone no matter which model they choose. The 64-bit A9 chip, introduced in iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, offers iPhone SE customers two times faster CPU and three times faster GPU performance compared to iPhone 5s, all with gains in energy efficiency for improved battery life. M9, Apple’s next-generation motion coprocessor, is integrated into A9 allowing more features to run all the time at lower power, including “Hey Siri” without having to pick up your iPhone, and a range of fitness tracking capabilities like measuring your steps and distance. iPhone SE users can browse, download and stream content even faster with Wi-Fi up to three times and LTE up to 50 percent faster than iPhone 5s.* iPhone SE also includes more LTE bands for better worldwide roaming and supports Voice over LTE and Wi-Fi calling for high-quality wideband calls.

With an easy-to-use interface, amazing features, and security at its core, iOS 9 is the foundation of iPhone SE and brings powerful built-in apps like Messages, FaceTime®, Photos, Music and Maps to iPhone users. iOS 9 also brings more intelligence to iPhone SE with proactive assistance, powerful search, improved Siri® features, and a new Night Shift™ feature that uses your iPhone SE’s clock and geolocation to automatically adjust the colors in the display to the warmer end of the spectrum after dark and may even help you get a better night’s sleep.

All of these innovations are packed into a light and compact phone designed to fit comfortably in your hand, crafted from bead-blasted aluminum for a satin-like finish, refined matte-chamfered edges, a new color-matched stainless steel inset Apple logo and a brilliant four-inch Retina® display.

The World’s Most Popular Camera iPhone SE has an advanced 12-megapixel iSight camera featuring Focus Pixel technology for fast focusing, an Apple-designed image signal processor, advanced noise reduction, third-generation local tone mapping and better face detection, all resulting in sharper, more detailed photos like the ones shot on iPhone 6s. With Live Photos on iPhone SE, customers can go beyond snapshots to capture moments in motion and relive unforgettable memories with sound. Live Photos are beautiful 12-megapixel photos that, with just a touch, reveal the moments immediately before and after the shot was taken, so users can enjoy a living memory rather than an instant frozen in time.

Additional camera advancements include:

  • The ability to shoot HD video with support for 4K at a resolution of 3840 x 2160. After capturing 4K video, customers can edit on a Mac®, PC or iPad®, and with the latest version of iMovie® on iPhone, can even edit two simultaneous streams of 4K on iPhone SE.
  • Retina Flash, which momentarily makes the display three times brighter with True Tone® lighting technology, for wonderfully bright selfies in low light with the FaceTime HD camera.
  • Features introduced with iPhone 6s, including up to 63-megapixel panorama photos, video capture up to 60fps for 1080p video and 240fps for slo-mo, time-lapse with video stabilization and cinematic video stabilization.

Pricing & Availability

  • iPhone SE will be available in space gray, silver, gold and rose gold metallic finishes in 16GB and 64GB models starting at $399 (US) from Apple’s retail stores, Apple.com, Apple Authorized Resellers and select carriers, or for 24 monthly payments starting at $17 (US) exclusively at Apple’s retail stores in the US.** As part of the newly-announced Trade Up with Installments program at Apple stores in the US, customers can also purchase iPhone SE for as low as $10/month for 24 months.***
  • Customers in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Singapore, the UK, US Virgin Islands and the US will be able to order iPhone SE beginning Thursday, March 24, with availability beginning Thursday, March 31.
  • iPhone SE will be available in early April in Albania, Andorra, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Guernsey, Jersey, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Maldives, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey and UAE.
  • Apple-designed accessories including leather cases in black and midnight blue will be available for $39 (US), and Lightning® Docks in color-matched metallic finishes are currently available from Apple’s retail stores and Apple.com for $49 (US).
  • Every customer who buys iPhone SE from Apple will be offered free Personal Setup, in-store or online, to help them customize their iPhone by setting up email, showing them new apps from the App Store® and more.
  • Anyone who wants to learn more about iPhone SE or iOS 9 can register for the free workshops offered at every Apple Store®.