Amidst all the chaos in the globe, Apple just released its new iPhone and this is the one we have all been waiting for. The new iPhone SE 2020 is Apple’s attempt to capture the highly competitive mid range segment of the smartphone market.
The “new” iPhone SE made quite a few headlines with its superfast performance and the lowest price tag we have seen from Apple in a long time. But, is it all sunshine and rainbows? Or is there a catch?
Text: Sushil Neupane
The iPhone SE boasts the latest and greatest chipset from Apple packed into the body of the all-familiar iPhone 8 from three years ago, and the design is dated, to say the least. The freshest offering from Apple features a 4.7 inch widescreen LCD display with a 1334-by-750-pixel resolution at 326 PPI. The LCD technology ensures that the phone does not get too dim or too bright making it just usable outdoors. Don’t pass judgment just yet, the fewer pixels means that the powerful A13 bionic SOC feels even more snappy. In the huge bottom bezel of the phone rests the old-school Touch-ID sensor, and no, it does not get the fancy Face-ID that its older siblings got. In light of the recent events, where everyone has to cover their faces anyway, one might argue that Touch-ID is safer.
Apart from the A13 Bionic chipset and the slightly lower placement of the Apple logo on the back, the iPhone SE draws a lot of its hardware from the iPhone 8. The same 12-megapixel camera, 64GB of base storage, and a measly 1,821 mAh battery. The 64 GB base storage should not be a problem unless you store a lot of files locally, even so, you can easily upgrade to the 128 gigs or even 256 gigs. Also, 3 gigs of RAM on an iPhone is hardly an issue with industry-leading RAM management that iOS is known for. The issue you might have is with the 1,821 mAh battery. The battery, by today’s standards, is super small and even with the combined efficiency of iOS paired with the A13 Bionic, it is likely to die out before the end of the day if you are a heavy user. A ray of hope would be that the phone is 18W fast charge capable, but Apple expects you to get that upgrade separately as you only get a 5W power brick in the box.
“The best features of the iPhone 11 Pro are the ultra-wide-angle lens and the premium design. So, I am not surprised those two features didn’t trickle down to the mid-range variant. But given the fact that the phone is a brilliant performer, and gets the latest version of iOS, it’s an iPhone worth looking into.”
Director, IGC Business Holdings
Although the 12 MP camera was carried over from the iPhone 8 stock-bin, with the massive horsepower from the new chipset and the improved software over the years, this iteration does not disappoint. Don’t get me wrong, the performance is no iPhone 11 rival, but for the price, you cannot really complain. Honestly, the software is the main reason you should opt for the new mid-ranger.
The previous iPhone SE from 2016 is still on the latest version of iOS 13, and that is not something most other smartphone manufacturers can brag. So, rest assured, this iPhone will be getting all of the latest and greatest features that iOS brings for at least five years into the future.
So how does it all sum up? The iPhone SE is a device with some great potential and is ideal for a light user who wants a good overall iOS experience with a good amount of headroom for the foreseeable future. This is the best budget option for anyone looking to upgrade from iPhone 8 or below, given that you still want to be in the Apple ecosystem. However, if it is a more modern look you fancy, the Android world has a lot more to offer.
Apple is a brand that had such a grip on the market that it can demand a whopping $700 for a set of wheels for its new tower desktop and $1000 for a monitor stand. It stands to reason that a $400 smartphone is a cheap device in its arsenal. Like most other devices from Apple that price is likely to be a little more than its dollar to Nepali rupee exchange rate. The phone is expected to hit the Nepali market for somewhere in the neighbourhood of Rs. 65,000.
“On a midrange offering from iPhone, I expected a decent shooter and expandable memory support. Well, they did meet me half-way. Personally, I am more interested in what Apple has in store for the flagship iPhone 12 Pro Max. I do still carry a Note from Samsung for the more productive tasks.”
CEO, Maxx Connect
For a user that does not necessarily want in on the iOS ecosystem, the price is a bit steeper than what Apple’s marketing team might lead you to believe. I mean that the Oneplus 7T retails for around the same price and it has a stunning 6.55 inch Full HD Fluid AMOLED FHD+ display with a 90 Hz refresh rate and a Snapdragon 855+ chipset from Qualcomm. It even has a triple camera setup with ultrawide and telephoto lenses.
There are many comparable offerings from Android that objectively look better and have more versatile usability like the A series from Samsung, G series from Motorolla, or the Redmi series from Xiaomi. It is notable that the Apple brand logo has its own cult following and it does weigh in on the final say on the consumer’s part.