After rumours have been swirling for a while, Apple announced a long awaited successor to the iPhone SE. The aptly named iPhone SE2 takes on the iPhone 8 design with modern internals and replaces it in the lineup. Starting at £419 this new arrival packs a serious punch and is already being compared to the iPhone 11 — but in comparison, what do you get for your money?
Of course, you don’t get a “more modern” iPhone design. It looks like iPhones of old - but it’s glass and aluminium the same as newer models. Although the design is based on the iPhone 8, the SE2 features a similar back to the new iPhone 11. Giving it a very sleek and more modern appearance in comparison to older models.
Unfortunately with an older based design, you get bezels left over from this era. If this bothers you in the slightest, you are going to be very disappointed as this design has changed very little since 2014. In exchange for this, there is space for a Touch ID sensor (2nd gen) in comparison to the iPhone 11 FaceID and range of sensors in the notch.
One difference to point out is that the SE2 is Rated IP67 as apposed to the iPhone 11 being IP68. Meaning the iPhone 11 can stand 30minutes at 2meters as apposed to 1m on the iPhone SE2 - I doubt this is a worry for anyone.
Sure you miss out on some screen inches, but you get a slightly smaller form factor. 138.4mm x 67.3mm x 7.3mm (148g) vs 150.9mm x 75.7mm x 8.3mm (194g). The iPhone SE2 is available in White, Black and Red — the iPhone 11 is available in Purple, Yellow, Green, Black, White and Red.
While we are talking about the screen, the iPhone SE2 features a 4.7” display in comparison to a massive 6.1” version on the iPhone 11. These both feature True Tone and both work out as 326ppi with 1400:1 contrast ratio. If you want to also dig into the specs in-depth, they are also both Wide colour display (P3) and feature 625 nits max brightness. Essentially they are pretty much the same display just in different sizes — you are going to be hard pushed to see any difference.
There is a huge difference here, being that one of the lenses is missing from the iPhone SE2. They both feature the same 12MP (ƒ/1.8 aperture) wide camera, but the iPhone 11 also has a 12MP (ƒ/2.4 aperture) ultra-wide lens too. The SE2 also lacks the ability to take Night mode photos and also make auto adjustments to your images. It does still retain the ability to take portrait photos though, with advance depth control.
If video is your thing, then they are pretty much evenly matched. Both able to record up to 4k at 60fps but the extended dynamic range on the SE2 is limited to 30fps. Most of these differences are mainly due to missing the extra information from a second lens.
For selfies, the iPhone 11 has a 12MP (ƒ/2.2 aperture) camera capable of recording 4k at 60fps, whereas the iPhone SE2 has the same lens as the old iPhone 8. This is a 7MP (ƒ/2.2 aperture) version capable of recording 1080p video at 30fps. Despite this difference in sensors, they both have a Retina Flash, and both feature the ability to take portrait selfies.
The iPhone SE does begin to fall down if vlogging is in your use case, because the iPhone 11 features Smart HDR for photos, but also is the only unit that has extended dynamic range, cinematic video stabilisation, and slo-mo video capability. Of course, you can only play with Animoji and Memoji on only the iPhone 11 due to the TrueDepth sensors.
In terms of performance, they both have internally the same processor, the top of the line A13 Bionic chip with third-generation Neural Engine. The performance of the two is going to be pretty much the same. Indeed the iPhone 11 has one more GB of RAM (3GBvs4GB); however, this is likely to be used for the depth-sensing associated with the second camera. As was the same case when comparing the iPhone 8 to iPhone 8 Plus.
There aren’t any real conclusions to make here because you must take into account what you need from a phone, and what your priorities are. Ultimately you are comparing a £419 phone with a £729 one, and as such compromises must be made.
For a full breakdown, you can head to the Apple sight and compare the models. However I don’t think you miss out on much when you take into account the cost. Sure enough, most people split their phone cost over monthly payments, but for an outright price, the SE2 is a fantastic deal.