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iPhone SE (2nd Generation)

Apple iPhone SE

On April 24, 2020, Apple officially released the second generation iPhone SE to the public. It is an updated version of the first iPhone SE from 2016. Although they bear the same name, the two models are actually quite distinct. They share a similar budget-conscious philosophy, but in terms of technology, the 2020 iPhone SE shares more in common with the iPhone 11, which was released in September of 2019.

Highlights of the 2020 iPhone SE

2020 iPhone SE2016 iPhone SEiPhone 11
Display4.7-inch Retina HD4-inch Retina HD6.1-inch Liquid Retina HD
SecurityTouch IDTouch IDFace ID
Front Camera7MP1.2MP12MP
Rear CameraSingle 12MPSingle 12MPDual 12MP
Max Storage256GB128GB256GB

Budget-Conscious Design

The 2020 iPhone SE is an entry-level smartphone that has plenty of sophisticated features without breaking the bank. Although lacking some of the high-end features of the iPhone 11, such as Face ID and gesture navigation, it still has many of the innovations Apple has made in chip design, camera functionality, wireless charging, and other key features.

Retina Display

Retina HD is the brand name of Apple’s display technology. The key feature of a Retina display is the high pixel density (as measured by the number of pixels packed into a square inch). Individual pixels in the display should become indistinguishable at a normal viewing distance, so everything on the screen will appear sharper and clearer. The density of the iPhone SE is 326 pixels per inch — the same as the iPhone 11, iPhone XR, and many others, but less than the iPhone 11 Pro.

How Does the 2020 iPhone SE Compare to Other Apple iPhones?

2020 iPhone SE2016 iPhone SEiPhone 11
Display4.7-inch Retina HD LCD with 1334 x 750 Resolution4-inch Retina HD LCD with 1136 x 640 Resolution6.1-inch Liquid Retina HD LCD with 1792 x 828 Resolution
System on ChipA13 with six-core CPUA9 with dual-core CPUA13 with six-core CPU
Memory3GB LPDDR4X RAM2GB LPDDR4 RAM4GB LPDDR4X RAM
Front Camera7MP FaceTime HD1.2MP FaceTime HD12MP TrueDepth
Rear CameraSingle 12MP Wide cameraSingle 12MP Wide cameraDual 12MP Wide and Ultra Wide cameras with Night mode
Max Video Recording4K at 60 FPS4K at 30 FPS4K at 60 FPS
Max Storage256GB Flash128GB Flash256GB Flash
Cellular ConnectivityGigabit-class LTELTEGigabit-class LTE
SecurityTouch ID with fingerprint sensor in home buttonTouch ID with second-generation fingerprint sensor in home buttonFace ID with facial recognition
Battery6.96-watt-hours with 13 hours of video playback6.21-watt-hours with 13 hours of video playback11.91-watt-hours with 17 hours of video playback

Performance Improvements

The heart of the 2020 iPhone SE is the A13 chip. It contains a six-core CPU — with some cores clocked as high as 2.65 GHz — compared to the 1.8 GHz dual-core CPU of the 2016 iPhone SE. The neural engine inside of the chip also accelerates the performance of applications with artificial intelligence. In practical terms, all of this results in significant performance improvements with shorter loading times and more multitasking.

Fast Wireless Speeds

Gigabit-class LTE is a bridge technology between 4G and 5G. With speeds up to a gigabit per second (which translates to around 400 megabits in the real world), it can stream video and download games with far fewer hitches than standard 4G, according to the website Digital Trends. Other wireless connectivity options include Bluetooth 5.0 and 802.11ax Wi Fi — the same as the iPhone 11.

Advanced Camera Features

The rear camera of the 2020 iPhone SE features image stabilization, True Tone flash (which corrects the color temperature of the picture), a Portrait mode with depth control, six unique portrait lighting effects, and digital zoom. Another important innovation is Smart HDR, which can automatically take multiple shots at different exposure levels and then combine them into a single image to enhance shadow details and highlights. Many of these features were not present in the 2016 iPhone SE.

How Does the 2020 iPhone SE Compare to Similar Smartphones?

2020 iPhone SESamsung Galaxy A20Lenovo A5
Display4.7-inch Retina HD LCD with 1334 x 750 Resolution6.4-inch AMOLED with 1560 x 720 Resolution5.45-inch LCD with 1440 x 720 Resolution
Memory3GB3GB2GB or 3GB
Front Camera7MP8MP8MP
Rear CameraSingle 12MPDual 13MP and 5MPSingle 13MP
Max Storage256GB (Not Expandable)32GB (Expandable)32GB (Expandable)
If you’re not quite ready to make the investment in the iPhone SE, then you might want to consider previous generations of Apple smartphones such as the iPhone 7, iPhone 8, and iPhone X. These powerful devices come with many of the same features such as 4K video recording. Content provided for informational purposes only. eBay is not affiliated with or endorsed by Apple, Samsung, or Lenovo.