Great review of the iPhone SE 2 (2020). Is it worth buying?

16 min

Iphone Se 2

iPhone SE 2 is here! But were we waiting for this?

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Three years of waiting, thousands of rumors and leaks. And finally, here he is the 2nd generation iPhone SE is out. Apple has released a smartphone that is surprisingly familiar in design and content, which still has significant innovations. We met closely with the new iPhone SE and talked about it in detail.

Design. Find the differences

Well, will we get to know each other?

Wait, though. These are painfully “familiar people”.

If you’ve ever had an iPhone 8, iPhone 7, iPhone 6s, or even iPhone 6 in your hands, then the new iPhone SE (2020) will be very familiar to you. Too familiar.

The 2nd generation iPhone SE has a traditional case shape with rounded corners and edges, large display bezels, one of which has a round Home button. The front and back surfaces are covered with a protective glass and it is glossy.


Prior to the release of the 2nd generation iPhone SE, rumors circulated that the model would differ from the G8 with a matte rear window. Just like the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro. Alas, it did not work out. The back surface of the smartphone is glossy – it collects fingerprints and tactilely reminds that it is the same glass as in the iPhone 8.

It’s really a pity that the rear window didn’t become frosted. The appearance of the smartphone would be transformed. But the main thing-there would be a completely different tactile sensation.

The location of the elements on the housing has not changed in any way. And it would be illogical to expect it. At the top it is empty, at the bottom there is the Lightning connector and the speaker and microphone grilles, on the left side — the volume control unit, on the right the power button and the SIM card tray. Just for the record: there is no 3.5 mm audio output on the smartphone.

What does it mean that nothing has changed at all? Let me assure you, there are still some new details.

1. the Apple Logo on the smartphone cover is shifted to the center, as in the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro. If you wear the new iPhone SE without a case, you will be able to show the whole world that you have a new product, and not just “eight” (or “seven”, in the case you can not make out at all).

The logo was omitted lower just to make the model fit the current and future flagships. There was no other reason for this.

In the iPhone 11/11 Pro, the logo was shifted due to the fact that in the previous place it would have been close to the enlarged block with cameras. In the iPhone SE 2nd generation, the camera is a classic single-it does not interfere with the logo in any way.

However, they omitted the logo and lowered it. Let it be in the center – thus highlighting the new iPhone SE from the crowd.

The last point about the logo, I promise. If you had a case for an iPhone 7 or iPhone 8 with a round neck under the “bullseye”, then it will not fit on the iPhone SE 2nd generation. The case itself will fit, but the desired Apple will not be visible.

Or maybe it was for making money on new covers that all these movements were conceived?

2. The second design change is body color. The 2nd generation iPhone SE came in three colors: black, white and red. With the iPhone 8, the new smartphone has only one common color – red, the others are different.

Black and white colors of the smartphone case look cool, there is no fault. Apple relied on the classics and certainly did not fail.

An interesting point. The new 2nd generation iPhone SE has a black bezel in all colors. Even the model is white. On the one hand, this is a favorable contrast. On the other hand, it will seem to some (and already seems to have seen reviews) that this is a mismatch.

Here, everyone decides for it. Personally, all the colors of the smartphone and the black front end went with a bang.

Iphone Se 2Nd Generation
Frames are black on all models

Why does the new iPhone SE have such an old design? The first reason is that Apple has exactly” littered ” with components from the iPhone 8, which were put into operation to build a new smartphone.

The second reason is that the company wanted to release a budget smartphone by its own standards. This condition did not allow it to get a modern design.

The last thing I want to notice about the design is the dimensions and weight. First of all, looking at them, it becomes clear that we are actually looking at a clone of the iPhone 8. Yes, the dimensions of smartphones are identical — 138.4×67.3×7.3 mm.

New Iphone Se

I will not find fault with the identity of the dimensions, but rather note that the new iPhone SE is a contender for the title of the best compact smartphone of 2020. Exactly. Smartphones with this size simply do not exist on the market, especially new ones. You can see for yourself, for example, by performing a search on the Market for dimensions. Spoiler: You won’t find anything.

Of course, the new 4.7-inch iPhone SE is no match for the compactness of the very 4-inch original iPhone SE. But it has every right to be considered compact in our time. Just because smartphones come with us with 6- and even 7-inch displays, which are sometimes difficult to hold even with two hands.

Against their background, the 4.7-inch iPhone SE of the 2nd generation is a baby.

To complete the picture-the weight of the smartphone is 148 g (you will not be surprised, but the same weight of the iPhone 8). For the device’s target audience, iPhone 5s/6/6s users, its weight will not be a revelation.

But if you take a new iPhone SE after using an iPhone X or any newer iPhone for a long time, the difference is felt instantly. The latest iPhone models have noticeably gained weight, which is most clearly known in direct comparison.

Let’s talk about the good. The processor is power

The main thing that is in the 2nd generation iPhone SE is the flagship powerful A13 Bionic processor.

The six-core chip includes four energy-efficient Thunder cores with a frequency of 1.8 GHz and two productive Lightning cores with a frequency of 2.65 GHz. The number of transistors surpasses – 8.5 billion.

All this goodness from above is lubricated by the 3rd generation Neural Engine machine learning system. It is responsible for all the artificial intelligence on the smartphone, including the department that processes and improves images. And this, you must admit, is more important than the Siri Offers feature, which is also real thanks to the Neural Engine.

Processor Is Power

The key point is that the A13 Bionic processor is practically not cut compared to the same chip used in the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro.

What does “practically” mean? See for yourself.

In the Geekbench 5 benchmark, the new 2nd generation iPhone SE scored 1,330 points in single-threaded mode and 3,125 points in multi-threaded mode.

The iPhone 11 Pro did better: 1328 and 3414 points, respectively. In multi-threaded mode, the difference in performance was quite significant.

And it seems that this is not a shoal of a benchmark that in theory might not be adapted to fit the new iPhone SE. Just because the AnTuTu benchmark has a similar situation. iPhone SE scored 492 166 points, while the iPhone 11 Pro scored 010 521 points.

This gives every reason to believe that Apple deliberately lowered the clock speed of the A13 Bionic processor in the new iPhone SE. What for? There may be several reasons. The two main ones are on the surface.

  1. In practice, Apple saw that a smartphone with its small 4.7-inch screen does not need the full power of the A13 processor. In fairness, this power sometimes seems excessive in the iPhone 11 Pro, since even the most demanding applications and games load instantly.
  2. The second reason is more important. Apple could underclock the processor in the 2nd generation iPhone SE to increase its battery life. Limiting peak performance would definitely allow optimal autonomy if the company had such a task.

But don’t worry about the “deliberately slowed down” iPhone SE. It is really doing well. The 2nd generation iPhone SE is faster than most Android smartphones, including flagship ones. If you take into account only the performance of Geekbench 5, which I personally trust more, then the iPhone SE is completely faster than all Android flagships. Including the latest smartphones from the Samsung Galaxy S20 line, which scored a maximum of 836 and 3101 points in Geekbench 5 tests.

But enough about the parrots. What is there with the real speed of work? The results of the “live” test turned out to be expected, yet we have the most powerful mobile chip here.

The 2nd generation iPhone SE instantly launches any application in any quantity. No matter how much I switch between applications, they do not close in the background and their change took a split second.

I did not fail the smartphone in games. I tested the device in my favorite Oceanhorn 2 from Apple Arcade and the popular World of Tanks Blitz and Call of Duty: Mobile. Everywhere I twisted the settings to the maximum, not sparing. And in all three cases, I got what I expected – stable 60 frames per second, fast downloads and no slowdowns. Even when the action in tanks and CoD started on the screen, there was no noticeable subsidence.

Play on the 4.7-inch screen of the new iPhone SE was quite normal. I did not experience any major inconvenience, I enjoyed the gameplay qualitatively. Nevertheless, from time to time, the idea crept in and on its own that a bigger screen, narrower frames, the quality of the gameplay would reach a new level.

I am sure that Apple is not in vain separately advertising the Apple Arcade service on the page of the new iPhone SE on its website. These two are not “made for each other”, but playing the best games on a smartphone will turn out comfortably – performance is enough with the head.

Iphone Se 2020

I mentioned above that no matter how many applications I run, they do not restart in the background. That’s because the smartphone is equipped with 3 GB of RAM. This is another nice difference from the iPhone 8, which has only 2 GB of RAM.

Three gigabytes of “RAM” smartphone enough can say for the eyes. Applications stably stay in the background, photos and video after the shooting are processed instantly. However, it was impossible to expect another in terms of photos. Still, the smartphone has one camera.

Another important point related to performance. The iPhone SE 2nd is a really powerful smartphone. And that means it will be updated oh for how long. Users have the right to expect updates of 6-7 years, no less. Otherwise, Apple will be a complaint.

In addition, this is a huge plus of the new iPhone SE compared to Android smartphones, which often stop updating after a year or two.

Oh yes, the built-in memory of the iPhone SE is familiar – 64, 128 or 256 GB, depending on the configuration.

Display. I’ve seen it somewhere

We return to more stable things. The 2nd generation iPhone SE has a 4.7-inch Retina HD LCD with a resolution of 1334 × 750 pixels (326 pixels per inch). Brightness – 625 cd / m², contrast – 1400: 1.

Well, notice? Yes, yes, this is exactly the same screen that is installed on the iPhone 8. There is no difference between the displays of smartphones.

The 2nd generation iPhone SE screen also has an expanded color gamut (P3), dual-domain pixels to expand the viewing angle and support for True Tone technology.

The latter, if you suddenly forget, uses sensors in your smartphone to adjust colors and brightness depending on the light. True Tone adapts the screen to any conditions, making the image “like on paper”. In general, this is a cool and useful, but long-familiar function. It debuted just the same on the iPhone 8/8 Plus and iPhone X.


And, of course, the 2nd generation iPhone SE display has a wide scope. The upper and lower frames are especially wide. “Thanks” to them, the display occupies only 65.5% of the front surface of the screen – the indicator is not so hot. For comparison, the iPhone XR display with its far from the narrowest frames around the perimeter was spread over 80.2% of the front panel area.

With the display characteristics of the new iPhone SE, everything is extremely clear. With sensations, in principle, too. The smartphone has the best LCD display among all smartphones on the planet. The picture is bright, contrasting and saturated. The detail is great. Viewing angles – space.

But the framework spoils the whole holiday – they hold back the display. If you take a smartphone in your hands after any “frameless”, then there is a slight attack of claustrophobia.

Battery. Very little mAh

The 2nd generation iPhone SE battery is another good friend of ours. The smartphone has the same battery as the iPhone 8. Its capacity is modest by today’s standards – 1821 mAh.

Does this make the battery life of the new iPhone SE and iPhone 8 identical? First of all, let’s look at the data from the Apple website. It’s very funny.


Tim Cook and the company as strange as possible notify users about the duration of iPhones without recharging.

Go to the Apple website, see yourself. In the characteristics of the iPhone 11 Pro it is stated – “it works without recharging up to 4 hours longer than the iPhone XS.” Ok, let’s see how much the iPhone XS works there. And he says – “it works up to 30 minutes longer than the iPhone X”.

Well, let’s take a look at the specifications of the iPhone X and finally find out for sure. Oops, the description of the “tens” says – “it works up to 2 hours longer than the iPhone 7”.

And such nonsense in each model. On the Apple website, you can’t actually find out the exact autonomy of the desired model. Just nonsense.

So is the new 2nd generation iPhone SE. On the Apple website, it is written in black and white that the new iPhone SE “works without recharging about as much as the iPhone 8”. “About as many!”

With such florid designs, Apple seems to be trying to confuse users. Do not give them the opportunity to quickly understand how much a particular smartphone is capable of working without recharging. And this, admittedly, the company is doing great.

In practice, the battery life of the 2nd generation iPhone SE is the same as that of the iPhone 8. You can expect about 10 hours of active work of the smartphone in the mode of surfing the network at medium brightness. The standard and long-time-old iPhone 7 indicator.

Once again, I’m not counting on a surprising increase in autonomy, for example, because of the energy-efficient A13 chip. On the first day of my use, the 2nd generation iPhone SE worked on the schedule of the new iPhone 8 – from morning to late evening. This is provided that I drove it.

Iphone Se

In the first few months, the 2nd generation iPhone SE will easily provide a day of active work without recharging. But remember that over time, the battery capacity of the smartphone will decrease. Degradation of the battery will lead to the fact that after a year or three there will be enough charge until the evening. In general, everything is like on the iPhone 6 / 6s / 7/8 (underline as necessary) with similar batteries.

But I will not end the conversation about the battery on a bad note. The 2nd generation iPhone SE supports fast charging – one, wireless charging – two.

Fast charging is possible at 18 watts. In 30 minutes, 50% of the battery is charged. True, the kit does not have accessories for quick charging. You need to buy both the adapter with increased power and a cable.

Fast Charging-Once

Well, what did you want? Apple for the first time was generous and put accessories with fast charging support only in the iPhone 11 Pro/11 Pro Max, bypassing the “normal” iPhone 11. It goes without saying that the” budget ” iPhone SE did not receive such accessories in the kit.

Wireless charging of the iPhone SE 2nd generation is slow, like that of the “eight”. Using the most common Qi charging pad, the smartphone was charged by 17% in 30 minutes.

Water protection

For some reason, many people mistakenly think that only the latest flagship iPhone models are protected from water. In fact, iPhones are perfectly protected from moisture since the time of King Peas. To be more precise – since the release of the iPhone 7.

The same iPhone 8 can easily dive to a depth of a meter (officially) without any threat to life. The IP67 is similarly waterproof to the 2nd generation iPhone SE. If the smartphone falls into the water, then, according to official tests, it will certainly lie there for 30 minutes without any problems.

It should be understood that all these indicators are greatly underestimated. This is a normal practice in general for all smartphone manufacturers. It is made so that users do not swim once again with their smartphones anywhere. Still, a breakdown due to contact with water is a non-warranty case. Both Apple and all other manufacturers.

In reality, and this has been proven many times by tests, a waterproof iPhone can withstand diving. iPhones were drowned at a depth of 10-20 meters, leaving there to hang out for hours. And everything was fine with them.

Therefore, we are not worried about the water-resistance of the 2nd generation iPhone SE. It is present and not only from splashes, as some belief.

Face ID? No. Touch ID. Yes

For a moment, let’s go to the oldest component of the iPhone SE 2nd generation. Yes, we are talking about the Touch ID fingerprint scanner. The smartphone uses a second-generation scanner model. This was first introduced in the iPhone 6s, back in 2015.

The five-year-old fingerprint scanner is still good. It adjusts quickly and comfortably, recognizes your finger instantly, and unlocks your smartphone in a split second.

Personal feelings on the speed of the unlock iPhone SE of the 2nd generation is higher than on the iPhone 8. It is worth to say thank you to the A13 processor, which is corny animation plays faster unlock than chip A11 in “eight”.

Is it normal to use Touch ID in 2020? Yes, quite. Many still haven’t gotten caught up in the whole face scanner epic and prefer the old-fashioned finger scanner. Personally, I prefer Face ID, but I also use Touch ID comfortably. There are no unpleasant feelings, as from some outdated technology, it does not arise.

Communication. Three big changes

It is a paradox, but few people talk about three very important innovations of the iPhone SE 2nd generation. This is surprising since there is not much new in the smartphone. Against this background, it is strange to miss such important changes. Well, all right.

Here’s what’s new about the iPhone SE 2nd generation in terms of connectivity compared to the iPhone 8:

  1. The 2nd generation iPhone SE supports Gigabit LTE. Networks of leading Indian operators have long been overclocked to Gigabit speeds, so all smartphone owners will be able to take advantage. Plus, such networks can have increased speeds of 900 Mbit / s or higher. It is still a long time before the launch of 5G in India, so the Gigabit LTE needs to be happy.
  2. The new iPhone SE supports Wi-Fi 6 (802.11 ax). Next-generation wireless networks are 35% faster than Wi-Fi networks 5. The increase is quite impressive, so you need to worry, buy a router with Wi-Fi 6 support and organize a high-speed wireless network at home. By the way, such routers are already on the market.
  3. The iPhone SE 2nd generation has integrated eSIM-an additional electronic SIM card. This is the most important innovation, provided that the free use of eSIM. Simply put, the new iPhone SE is the cheapest two-button iPhone, which for many will really be the main reason to buy the model.

Personally, eSIM has not yet tested the iPhone SE 2nd generation. But given that the implementation of eSIM in the smartphone is exactly the same as in the iPhone 11/11 Pro, then there will be no problems with its connection on operators offering digital “SIM cards”.

Cameras are Old but cooler

The most incomprehensible innovation of the smartphone is the camera. There’s a lot of confusion around it. All because Apple didn’t provide the proper detailed information. Now I’ll explain everything and you will understand.

Apple limited itself to naming only the basic characteristics of the camera. the iPhone SE 2nd generation received a single sensor-a resolution of 12 MP and a six-lens lens with an aperture of f / 1.8.

At the top, Apple added to the confusion by giving the iPhone 8 camera a powerful title — “the best single camera in history“. So is it better than the iPhone XR or even the iPhone 11?

In fact, the iPhone SE 2nd generation has the same camera module as the iPhone 8. But don’t get upset in a hurry.

Both cameras are 12-megapixel with an identical f/1.8 lens. But they have a different image processing sensor

The iPhone SE 2nd generation camera is supported by a modern sensor integrated into the A13 Bionic chip. Thanks to it, the camera has an increased dynamic range, has support for portrait mode and Smart HDR mode. In General, it has all the benefits of a single camera iPhone 11.

Single Camera

Sample photos on iPhone SE 2nd generation

In conditions of high-quality daylight, there are few complaints about images on the new iPhone. Fair color reproduction, high detail and normal sharpness. In complex shots, however, it is noticeable that the smartphone is not the flagship. For example, detailing the petals is a really difficult task, very average even with perfect natural lighting.

Photos On Iphone Se 2Nd Generation

Photos On Iphone Se 2

Photos On Iphone Se 2020

Photos On Iphone Se 2K20

Images on the iPhone SE 2 suffer as the lighting gets worse. There is no support for Apple’s proprietary night mode of shooting here. Therefore, the frames are also average.

In low light, even function support does not save. By the way, this was not the case with the iPhone 8 – another important advantage of the new Apple smartphone.

Another important feature of the rear camera is support for portrait shooting with the ability to adjust the bokeh effect using the Depth function. In this mode, you can take test portrait photos on the main camera of the new iPhone SE by choosing various portrait lighting, for example, studio or contour light.

Verdict. Who should buy an iPhone SE 2 (2020)?

Released before the start of sales of iPhone SE 2nd generation foreign smartphone reviews were ridiculous to read. That’s really funny. In each review, it was repeatedly said that these are the good fellows of Apple – they released a “cheap” or “budget” iPhone.

Unfortunately, in the realities of the Indian economy, the 2nd generation iPhone SE cannot be described like that. In fact, this is a very expensive smartphone, which has dozens of more affordable alternatives. The price of the smartphone is impressive – ₹39,000 for the basic version with 64 GB of memory.

In this regard, it is impossible to recommend a novelty to everyone and everyone in any case.

Buy an iPhone SE 2nd generation if…

  • You need the cheapest iPhone. Taking an iPhone 6s or iPhone 7 is now unreasonable – smartphones are close to becoming obsolete. Buying an iPhone 8 is really stupid. Its price is exactly the same as that of the 2nd generation iPhone SE, but at the same time it is worse in terms of performance. There is only one way out – you need to take the new iPhone SE from less expensive iPhones.
  • You need a compact iPhone. Among the iPhones with small dimensions, only a few models remained on sale: iPhone 6s, iPhone 7, iPhone 8 and now here is the new iPhone SE. I don’t want to repeat myself, but among these smartphones it’s right to buy only iPhone SE. Of course, situations are different. Some money will be enough only end-to-end on iPhone 7. In such cases, you can’t do anything. But if you have the financial capabilities or you can wait and dig, then among the listed compact models, you must definitely take the 2nd generation iPhone SE.
  • You need a long-lasting smartphone. The new iPhone SE for 39 thousand rupees has a lot of competitors, including the real flagships of Xiaomi, Honor and other Chinese brands. They are in many ways superior to the new Apple smartphone, but by one indicator they are hopelessly losing out. We are talking about the duration of support. Buying an iPhone SE 2nd generation now, you can be sure that it will be steadily updated for at least six years. No Android smartphone will offer anything even close to this.

Do not buy an iPhone SE 2nd generation if…

  • You have long been tired of the classic iPhone design. Unfortunately, there is absolutely no sense of novelty from the iPhone SE 2nd generation in the hands that does not occur. I am happy only with the color of the case, which many will successfully forget by putting the smartphone in a case. In other respects, this is the usual iPhone 6s/7/8 — a classic of the genre.
  • You want a new user experience. The 2nd generation iPhone SE will hardly provide you with new experience after using, for example, iPhone 5s or iPhone 6. Yes, you will be shocked by the speed of work and enjoy games from Apple Arcade if you need them. But nothing more. The transition, for example, to the iPhone XR with its narrow-screen frame and Face ID will turn out to be much more impressive.

Well, how do you like the new iPhone SE 2? Share your opinion in the comments!

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