The iPhone SE: A Budget-Friendly iPhone with Flagship Power

The iPhone SE: A Budget-Friendly iPhone with Flagship Power


Apple recently released a new addition to their iPhone lineup – the iPhone SE. As an affordable alternative to the flagship iPhones, the iPhone SE packs impressive specs and performance into a compact, familiar design. Here’s a comprehensive look at what the iPhone SE has to offer.

iPhone SE
iPhone SE

Design and Display

At first glance, the iPhone SE looks virtually identical to the iPhone 8, with the same 4.7-inch Retina HD display and chunky top and bottom bezels. However, while the screen itself is unchanged, it’s housed in an all-glass enclosure like the iPhone 11 series. The iPhone SE retains the home button and Touch ID fingerprint sensor, unlike newer Face ID iPhones.

With dimensions of 5.45 x 2.65 x 0.29 inches, the iPhone SE is compact and pocketable. It’s available in black, white, and (PRODUCT)Red color options. The IPS LCD display has a resolution of 1334 x 750 pixels, which is sharp and colorful but not as crisp as flagship OLED displays. The bezels do look dated compared to nearly bezel-less competitors, but the small size makes one-handed use easy.


On the rear is a single 12MP f/1.8 wide camera, which Apple states is identical to the main camera on the iPhone 11 series. So while you don’t get multiple lenses like on pricier iPhones, photo and video quality should still impress. The camera supports Portrait mode with various lighting and depth effects, Smart HDR for dynamic range, and 4K video recording at 60fps. Around front is a 7MP f/2.2 selfie camera, capable of Portrait selfies and 1080p video.

Performance and Battery Life

Here’s where the iPhone SE really shines – it’s powered by Apple’s latest A13 Bionic chip, the same extremely fast processor in the iPhone 11 lineup. With such speedy performance packed into a $399 phone, the iPhone SE smokes anything in its price range. It’s a full-fledged flagship on the inside. You also get a solid IP67 water/dust resistance rating.

Apple claims the 1821mAh battery lasts about the same as the iPhone 8 – up to 13 hours of video playback. While not extraordinary, it should easily deliver a full day of use. Fast charging and Qi wireless charging are supported to help top up quickly.

Storage and Other Features

The iPhone SE comes in 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB storage options. Given the lack of microSD expandability, you may want to spring for 128GB or more to future-proof your device. A dual nano-SIM model is available in China, while other countries get embedded eSIM support.

Some other handy features include WiFi 6 for faster speeds, Gigabit LTE, NFC for Apple Pay, Bluetooth 5.0, Dolby Vision HDR video playback, stereo speakers, and iOS 13 out of the box with guaranteed updates for years to come. Unlike premium iPhones, there’s no ultra-wide camera or Face ID though.

Pricing and Availability

The iPhone SE starts at just $399 for 64GB of storage, making it the most affordable new iPhone you can buy. It’s up for preorder now and hits stores on April 24, 2020. For $449 you can upgrade to 128GB, while $549 gets you 256GB. It comes unlocked or for use on carriers like Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile.

Compared to premium $1000+ iPhones, the SE sacrifices some features but retains the lightning-fast A13 processor for hundreds less. For many, it strikes the ideal balance of price and performance in Apple’s lineup.

Who is the iPhone SE For?

The iPhone SE targets several main audiences:

  • Those seeking a budget iPhone option without sacrificing speed or software support. The SE brings flagship power down to an affordable price point.
  • Fans of smaller phones. With most models growing ever larger, the SE provides welcomed compactness. It’s the only current iPhone under 5 inches.
  • Apple devotees clinging to Touch ID and home button. The SE retains the iconic physical home button along with super-fast Touch ID fingerprint recognition.
  • Owners of older iPhones. For those still holding onto an iPhone 6, 6S, or first-gen SE, the new SE provides a massive speed boost and camera upgrade while feeling right at home.

iPhone SE vs the Competition

The closest competitors to the iPhone SE are budget-minded options like the Google Pixel 3a, Samsung Galaxy A51, and OnePlus Nord N10. Let’s see how the SE stacks up:

  • Pixel 3a – Best SE rival in camera quality, especially in low light thanks to Night Sight. But the SE wins on performance and will get software updates for many years longer.
  • Galaxy A51 – Has an OLED display with slimmer bezels, plus four rear cameras. But the SE crushes it in speed, build quality, and software support.
  • OnePlus Nord N10 – Features a faster 90Hz display, more RAM, and 30W fast charging. However, the SE still reigns supreme in raw performance and will get updates for longer.

The SE handily beats any comparably priced Android phone in power and longevity. For budget shoppers who value those traits, the SE is a standout choice.

Should You Buy the iPhone SE?

If you want a fast, pocket-friendly iPhone that won’t break the bank, the SE is an excellent option. It can keep up with iPhones costing more than twice as much, aided tremendously by the A13 Bionic processor. The camera, while no multi-lens setup, takes great shots in daytime. Just keep in mind there’s no ultra-wide or telephoto lens, and low light quality is just okay.

Battery life and base storage could be better, but wireless charging helps offset average endurance. The small, dated screen won’t impress those accustomed to huge flagships, yet remains perfectly usable. For the price, the iPhone SE delivers outstanding performance in an iconic design. If you want flagship capabilities without a flagship price, the 2020 iPhone SE is difficult to beat.


The iPhone SE packs a punch, delivering incredibly fast performance thanks to Apple’s A13 Bionic chip at an affordable $399 starting price. For iPhone fans on a budget, owners of older iPhones, or anyone who prefers a smaller device, the 2020 iPhone SE is a compelling choice. It foregoes some features like multiple rear cameras, but retains flagship power and software support. For more articles exploring the latest gaming and technology products, visit



Hello, my name is Wyatt, and I am a biography writer with 3+ years of experience writing about all sorts of popular people like gamers, YouTubers, TikTok stars, Esports players, and Social Media Celebrities. I also write articles about video games, health, and technology.

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