Apple will ring louder in Asia with 5G iPhone SE

FILE PHOTO: The Apple logo is seen at an Apple store as Apple's new 5G iPhone 12 goes on sale in Brooklyn, New York
FILE PHOTO: The Apple logo is seen at an Apple Store as Apple’s new 5G iPhone 12 went on sale October 23, 2020 in Brooklyn, New York, United States. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/

March 9, 2022

By Siddarth S and Nivedita Balu

(Reuters) – Apple Inc.’s low-cost 5G model is likely to boost the iPhone maker’s appeal in Asia, where it is in an uphill battle with several rivals from Samsung to Vivo, analysts say.

After Apple’s focus on high-end phones during the supply chain crisis caused by the pandemic, Apple this week unveiled 5G connectivity for its iPhone SE — priced at $429 — likely to attract more lower-end buyers in emerging markets .

“The new iPhone SE 3rd generation could effectively help capture an increasing share among budget-conscious consumers, particularly in Asia,” Cowen and Company Brokerage said, citing China and India in particular.

Counterpoint Research said that since its launch in Q2 2020 through the end of 2021, the former 4G iPhone SE accounted for 12% of total iPhone sales, with Japan being the largest market after the United States.


“This time around, we expect more opening of demand in other markets like Europe, Southeast Asia and Korea — regions that many consumers have stayed away from due to a lack of 5G support (for the older SE),” Sujeong, an analyst at Counterpoint Research told Lim.

Apple, the world’s most valuable company with a market cap of around $2.6 trillion, achieved its highest market share in China late last year, overtaking Huawei to become the best-seller, according to a previous Counterpoint.

Cowen and Company analyst Krish Sankar said the $30 price increase of the new small-screen 5G phone over the 4G version should cover most of the additional costs from the upgraded technology, although margins compared to the 699 -dollar iPhone 13 mini would be less.

He estimated that the iPhone SE would yield between 42% and 54% gross margin, or roughly half the gross profit for each device compared to the iPhone 13 mini.

“We believe a renewed affordable iPhone SE lineup should spur consumer interest in iPhones amid investor fears of sharp declines,” said Citi analyst Jim Suva.

(Reporting by Siddarth S and Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing by Andrew Cawthorne) Apple will ring louder in Asia with 5G iPhone SE

Emma Bowman

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