iPhone nano was in the works back in 2011, according to Steve Jobs’ email

  • Steve Jobs had planned for an iPhone nano back in 2010.
  • The iPhone nano was rumoured to launch in 2011.
  • iPhone nano would have replaced the iPhone 3GS.

The 2011 iPhone nano rumours have now been confirmed after an email from Steve Jobs himself was excavated by The Verge. The rumour around a smaller and cheaper variant of the iPhone back in 2011 has now proved itself to be true. The Verge has reported that Steve Jobs had originally planned to launch a “low-cost iPhone” to sit beneath the then flagship iPhone 4 and replace the older iPhone 3GS. The email also shows that Steve Jobs wanted ‘Jony’ presumably Jony Ive, former Apple chief design officer, to demonstrate design renders or models of the low-cost iPhone nano.

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iPhone nano – smaller and cheaper iPhone

Apple’s iPhone has been a game-changer for the company as well as the industry as a whole. Since the introduction of the first iPhone in 2007, the product has changed how smartphones are perceived and interacted with. However, an indisputable fact remains that the product is on the expensive side and not all can afford it. Apple has always been in a bid to expand its iPhone user base originally restricted by the price and has been trying various strategies to get it down. From selling generation old iPhones officially alongside the newest iPhone to the introduction of the first independent cheaper iPhone – the iPhone SE 1st generation. It is now that Apple has also branched out to produce a flagship-level iPhone device at a more affordable and smaller form factor with the likes of the iPhone 12 mini and iPhone SE 2.

This plan, however, has been on the cards for a fairly long time. The October 2010 email shows Steve’s plans to slot in a lower-cost iPhone below the 2011 iPhone 4 and replace the 3GS. The budget iPhone was likely to be called ‘iPhone nano’ in line with Apple’s then nomenclature such as the smaller iPod Touch called the iPod nano. Apple currently sells the iPhone SE 2nd generation, iPhone XR, iPhone 11, and iPhone 12 mini as cheaper alternatives to the main iPhone 12 lineup.

Key Specs

Apple iPhone SE 2020 (iPhone SE 2)
Apple A13 Bionic | 3 GBProcessor
4.7 inches (11.94 cm) Display
12 MPRear camera
7 MPSelfie camera
1821 mAh Battery
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Review Summary

Expert Rating4/5



  • Ideal for one-handed usage
  • Smooth performance
  • Good daylight camera performance
  • Guaranteed OS updates


  • Small screen
  • Just one rear camera
  • Average battery life
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