How is iPhone SE

How is iPhone SE? Review of Apple’s Phoenix!

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You have questions about iPhone SE? How is iPhone SE? Why did Apple release a small iPhone again after two years? What’s the difference between iPhone SE and the previous generation of iPhone? In this review of iPhone SE, you’ll find answers to all these questions, so stay with us!

After iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, Apple has introduced an iPhone with a small display for those who prefer small smartphones. However, Apple didn’t try to make it different; in fact, it’s just an upgraded version of iPhone 5s which can be a suitable choice for Apple fans who prefer smaller displays. Nowadays, remakes in cinema industry are very popular. And sometimes they`re even more attractive than the original version (like Ocean’s Eleven or King Kong). However, sometimes they fail to attract positive feedback.

Apple has decided to remake one of its legendary models and hopes its familiar appearance and brand new hardware can attract Apple fans. In the next paragraphs we’re going to review iPhone SE to see whether Apple `s remake managed to succeed.

iPhone SE Specifications 
CPUApple A9 chip (64-bit) with M9 motion co-processor
GPUPowerVR GT7600
Display4-inch; 1,136x640 pixels
Dimensions / Weight123 x 58 x 7.6mm
Primary Camera12-megapixel
Secondary Camera1.2-megapixel
OSiOS 9.3
Storage Capacity16GB, 64GB
BatteryNon-removable Li-Po 1624 mAh
ColorSilver, gray, gold, rose gold

Apple iPhone SE

How is iPhone SE? Review of Apple’s Phoenix!

Design: Apple Counts on iPhone 5s’ Design


As you can guess, except of rose gold color of iPhone SE, there isn’t any difference between this phone and iPhone 5s. After using large iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and Plus versions for almost two years, it’s exciting to take a small iPhone in your hand again and we wish Apple never makes iPhone any larger! According to Apple’s tradition, Home button and the fingerprint sensor are placed under the 4-inch display.

You can also see the secondary camera as well as the earpiece speaker and light sensor above the display. There’s a three-piece back panel: rose gold middle piece made of aluminum, white glass top and bottom pieces. The main camera, microphone and dual flash are also located on the upper piece. SIM card slot is embedded on the right side of the device and we can see volume and ring/silent buttons on the left side. The speaker, communication port, 3.5 mm headphone jack and main microphone are placed on the bottom.

iPhone SE Design

The weight of the device is amazing and enjoyable. It`s been a long time since we put such a lightweight smartphone in our pocket. In total, we like iPhone SE as we liked iPhone 5s. Although most of us prefer large screen smartphones, it doesn’t mean that a small Phone like iPhone SE can’t satisfy us.

iPhone SE and iphone 5S

Nevertheless, there’re still some problems iPhone SE has inherited from its prototype. For example, if you shake the phone, you’ll hear some noise because the power button isn’t embedded in its place firmly.

Apple iPhone SE Design

Display: War of Pixels Is Not Important for Apple


The fact is that although the familiar chassis is still attractive for us, we don’t think the same of the display and wish we could see the display of iPhone 6s on this phone. Apple used a display with 1136×640 resolution for iPhone SE while Samsung produces the best displays in the world of smartphones with 1440×2560 resolution (like what they did in Galaxy Note 7).

But don’t think that Apple developers don`t know it! This amount of pixels used in the display makes iPhone SE`s quality high enough so that you can’t find any drawback in it. Its readability is excellent and you won’t have any problem with reading even the smallest texts.

iPhone SE Camera

It works well even under direct sunlight and you can see content without quality loss. One of the features lost in iPhone SE is 3D Touch. Although we believe that this feature is more entertaining than functional, we thought that Apple would leave it on iPhone SE. Finally, although we can`t compare iPhone SE’s display with Samsung AMOLED displays, it has appropriate quality and is actually one of the best of its kind.

Performance & Hardware: Not the Best but Good Enough!


A different story starts here. The inside of iPhone SE is totally different from iPhone 5s. The processor of the device called A9 is dual-core with 1.84GHz. It comes with 2GB RAM as well as a six-core GPU. This is the same hardware that we’ve seen in iPhone 6s before what means it’s as powerful as iPhone 6s. Of course, as iOS runs excellent on the device, hardware specs don’t affect the device’s performance much. However, although iPhone always runs heavy software and games smoothly, you can feel impressive improvement compared to iPhone 5s.

iPhone SE Performance

iPhone SE has been released in two versions: 16GB and 64GB. If you’re thinking of buying this device, we highly recommend you to go with the 64GB version.

Actually, it’s always hard to compare iPhone with Android phones in terms of performance because they have different operating systems which act differently, but in total, it must be said that Android has taken some big and important steps forward with its new improvements during the recent years, but because of high compatibility in iPhone devices, iOS is still a few steps ahead. Nevertheless, Android is also coming closer every day and even may take the lead in near feature.

iPhone SE Popularity

iPhone SE Price History

Fingerprint Sensor: The Victim of Lower Cost


This is the part of iPhone SE which was sacrificed by Apple to reduce the final price of the device. The latest version of touch ID hasn’t been used in this smartphone what resulted in lower performance compared to iPhone 6s. Still, it acts better than its competitors released in 2015 or 2016.

iPhone SE Fingerprint Sensor

Battery: It Needs to Be Better


In terms of battery, there’s no big difference between this phone and iPhone 5s. Apple has only combined some internal components of the phone to create more space for a 1624mAh battery.

Its capacity is almost 100mAh lower than in iPhone 6s battery. However, because of the small display of iPhone SE, its battery performance is better than in iPhone 6s. We played a FULL-HD video for an hour while Wi-Fi was on; brightness was set to 100%; during our test battery charge decreased from 100% to 96%.

We also challenged the battery with some everyday tasks, such as 20 minutes of calling, 1 hour of web surfing, 1 hour of social networking and 30 minutes playing games. Battery charge dropped from 100% to 20% at the end of the day.

However, instead of finding out how long it takes for battery charge to drop from 100% to 0%, it’s more important to know how long it takes it to recharge completely. It takes about 2 hours for it to charge completely which isn’t very appropriate for a battery with 1600mAh capacity.

Camera: Convenient and Enjoyable


As we’ve mentioned above, iPhone SE is very similar to iPhone 6s in terms of hardware and its camera is no exception. Like iPhone 6s, iPhone SE has a 12MP camera with focal aperture of 2.2. In addition to more megapixels, 4K video recording has been added to this phone what makes it completely different from iPhone 5s.

iPhone SE Display

As always quality of pictures taken with iPhone isn’t the best, but it’s definitely one of the best. Noise level of taken pictures is very high, though colors and details are good enough. One of the best features of this camera is that it runs very fast and shutter speed is high what helps not to miss a moment.

Live Photos is another great feature that is included in this camera which lets you take GIF pictures.

iPhone SE Camera

Unfortunately, we don’t see same improvements on the secondary camera. Like in iPhone 5s, Apple has equipped iPhone SE to a 1.2MP camera. Retina Flash is also added to the secondary camera what means that if this feature is activated, your iPhone’s display will go white before taking a selfie to provide enough light. For all that, camera quality is appropriate and you’ll be satisfied.

Sample Photos Taken with iPhone SE

Final Word


Many iPhone fans became disappointed with iPhone 6 release because of its large display and criticized Apple for that. On the other hand, many other fans became happy because they could see content on a larger display. Anyway, Apple has released iPhone SE to the market to get satisfaction of those dissatisfied fans. If you’re one of them and didn’t upgrade your iPhone 5s to iPhone 6 or 6s, this device is made for you and without a doubt, you should buy it. But if you use iPhone 6, it’s not a good decision to switch to iPhone SE because you probably got used to a large display and it may be difficult for you to get back to a small display!

Also, if you are choosing your first Apple device, this smartphone will be a suitable choice for you if you are not used to large-display smartphones or prefer lighter smartphone with a smaller display.

What’s your opinion about Apple’s phones? Are you iPhone’s fan? What do you think about new member of iPhone’s family, iPhone SE? Feel free to share your opinion in comments below.

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