Foreign technology media AppleInsider recently conducted a detailed evaluation of Apple’s third-generation iPhone SE. The media believes that the iPhone SE 3 has a significant upgrade in performance, and the addition of support for 5G networks will attract more potential users, attracting Android users and those who are less concerned about specifications.
The iPhone SE, as the cheapest new iPhone, occupies an important place in Apple’s entire iPhone lineup. It offers most of the benefits of the top iPhone models and scales back all other features to provide as good value as possible to consumers. The iPhone SE is relatively low in price compared to high-end models and is a great smartphone option for those who don’t have much to spend.
Same classic look
The iPhone SE 3 relies on Apple’s design using older components, cases, and other elements to minimize development and production costs. At least from the looks of it, Apple has taken this approach to heart. The third generation of the iPhone SE features the same aerospace-grade aluminum and glass design as its predecessor. Same buttons, same corners, same switches, same IP67 rating.
You can also get the same Retina HD display with a diagonal of 4.7 inches, an LCD panel with a resolution of 1,334×750 pixels, and a pixel density of 326ppi. The contrast ratio is 1,400:1, the maximum brightness is 625 nits, the wide color gamut (P3) is supported, the True Tone is supported, and the Haptic Touch is supported. There’s no switch to a full screen like you’ve seen on other iPhone models.
Of course, as part of sticking to the same design as the previous generation, you have the same Home button on the front display. This also means that Touch ID is still in use. In an environment where masks are still in use, this is a great form of biometric security.
On the back, there’s the same camera, with a compact circular bump and a flash. Finally, there is still a reliable Lightning interface at the bottom. The same dimensions are 5.45 inches × 2.65 inches and 0.29 inches thick. Sure, Apple did make it lighter, at just 5.09 ounces, but that’s not a huge saving in the long run.
Anyone who sees the iPhone SE won’t be able to tell from the outside whether it’s a second or third-generation model. You also can’t rely on having a specific model of color to distinguish between different generations. With the exception of the usual (PRODUCT) red variant, Apple has made minimal adjustments to the other two colors. The “midnight” and “starlight” colors of the third generation have slight variations in tone from the “black” and “white” of the second generation, but they are not enough to fundamentally identify. This is similar to the changes we’ve seen with the Apple Watch.
If anyone suspects that this is just an internal upgrade, the only external changes in design compared to the second-generation iPhone SE are stiffer glass and two slightly tweaked colors.
A stronger “brain”
Compared to the A13 Bionic chip provided by the iPhone SE 2, the iPhone SE 3 has a significant performance improvement, equipped with the same A15 Bionic chip as the iPhone 13 series and iPhone 13 Pro series.
That’s a two-generation jump compared to the A13 of the second-generation iPhone SE, followed by two years of improvements. The new phones have the same six-core CPU arrangement, two performance cores, and four efficiency cores, but they run better than ever. The GPU is still quad-core, but Apple has also made some improvements to it.
According to the GeekBench run score library, the iPhone SE 3 has a single-core score of 1744 points and a multi-core score of 4315 points. Unsurprisingly, but impressively, this score is almost identical to that of the iPhone 13 Pro, with single-core and multi-core scores of 1734 and 4688, respectively. However, there are differences in memory. There are 6GB on the iPhone 13 Pro and 4GB on the iPhone SE.
The impact of processor upgrades cannot be overemphasized. As the brain of a smartphone, the system-on-chip touches almost every aspect of your experience, from startup apps to taking pictures to battery life. It also ensures future compatibility with upcoming software that will run on phones for years.
Same camera, new features
The camera system has not been upgraded in specs, it has a rear 12MP wide-angle camera, optical image stabilization with f/1.8 aperture of 5x digital zoom, and True Tone flash. However, the A15’s new image signal processor can help reduce noise from video and low-light images. ISPs can also improve white balance and provide better skin tones for subjects.
As before, you have portrait mode with depth control bokeh, portrait lighting with six effects, and Smart HDR. Now, users can take advantage of Smart HDR 4 and photography styles. The latter gives you more options for photo styling.
Also, these improvements help with FaceTime and selfies. The FaceTime HD camera can still take 7 megapixel still photos and has an f/2.2 aperture, but it also gets deep integration, smart HDR 4, and photography style.
Changes in imagery also extend to video. You can now get 4K video recording at 60fps. The new iPhone SE also has 240 frames per second of 1080p Slo-mo, OIS, 3x digital zoom, and stereo recording.
Support for 5G
A key marketing point for Apple for the iPhone SE is that it can now offer 5G connectivity. Adding support for 5G on the iPhone SE would be effortless for Apple.
In addition to being able to tell customers that the iPhone SE will be used with a new generation of mobile networks, Apple has ensured a degree of future protection for more cost-conscious users.
The problem, however, is that it won’t be the hyper-fast 5G that everyone advertises. Apple does not support both the far-reaching and resilient sub-6GHz band and the high-speed mmWave band, but only the sub-6GHz band.
Those who are more likely to need these speeds will use a model that supports mmWave instead of the iPhone SE. For users with more walking needs, not having this option may be disappointing, but being able to use 5G is still good.
If you haven’t gotten 5G service yet, the third-generation iPhone SE still supports the very fast LTE Advanced. While this is not an expected change for the model, Apple continues to offer dual SIM support, combining a nano-SIM card with an eSIM card. As for the other wireless connectivity options, Apple didn’t change the existing Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0, or NFC for Apple Pay transactions. Considering the price point, they are all fast and timely enough.
Longer battery life
There hasn’t been a real change in powering the iPhone SE, which is a bit of a disappointment. There’s wireless charging, but Apple isn’t turning to MagSafe, so you can’t take advantage of all the accessories, chargers, or higher charging limits that exceed 7.5W. The workhorse you can trust is lightning, and it can go the extra mile to provide the fastest way to charge again. Connect to a compatible 20W charger and you can reach 50% charging capacity in 30 minutes.
Apple did some magic in the use of power this time, probably because it used the A15. This includes a two-hour boost, up to 15 hours for video playback, and up to 10 hours for local streaming. Audio playback has also been improved, with listening times of up to 50 hours.
For heavy mobile phone users, 64GB may not be enough to meet the usage needs. But for the average user, this doesn’t seem like a big limitation. While 128GB is more practical for intermediate to advanced users, modern people are under pressure to use smartphones, and they want more storage space.
In the third generation, Apple did this by adding an extra size. You can still get 64GB or 128GB, but if your budget is adequate, 256GB is now an option.
The 64GB model costs $429, compared to $399 for the previous generation. The price of 128GB rises to $479, and $579 gives 256GB of capacity.