The new iPhone SE has not gone down well in China...

Iphone Se Water
Iphone Se Water (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Initial reaction to the new iPhone SE in China has not been positive.
  • A survey on Weibo polled 350,000 respondents, 60% of whom said they would not buy the model.
  • A lack of 5G and a potential drop in price were some of the reasons cited.

A Weibo survey of 350,000 respondents in China has revealed 60% of them will not buy Apple's new iPhone, just one day after the new product was announced.

As reported by Reuters:

Apple Inc's (AAPL.O) new iPhone SE for the budget-conscious is unlikely to be a major driver of sales in China, a Weibo survey suggested, with analysts noting its lack of 5G capability. In a poll conducted on social media site Weibo, 60% of roughly 350,000 respondents said they would not buy the new $399 model, the cheapest iPhone available.

Around 20% surveyed said that they would buy it, leaving another 20% who said they would consider the purchase. Whilst reasons for purchasing/not purchasing were not part of the survey, as the report notes analysts noted the device's lack of 5G capability as one potential reason. Of course, Apple was never going to introduce 5G in its budget-iPhone before it came to the flagship fall models.

Plenty of comments on the survey also suggested that buyers were conscious that holding out on buying the phone would see its price drop:

"If you don't buy it and I don't buy it, tomorrow the price will drop another 200 yuan ($28)," said one Weibo user whose comment got more than 10,000 likes.

According to analysts, the iPhone SE will "mainly appeal to Apple brand loyalists who don't want to spend about $700 for the high-end iPhone 11," and mid-range users not interested in 5G.

The response is interesting because China is currently the only country in the world where Apple stores are open. (Korea will open its Seoul store on Saturday) As such, it is likely that China's sales figures and market reaction may be the only accurate picture we have regarding the iPhone SE's reception, with store closures throughout the rest of the world likely to stunt uptake.

Apple's new iPhone SE was announced yesterday, sporting an A13 processor and the beloved form-factor of the iPhone 8.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9