iPhone half-dozen, 6s, & 7 vs. iPhone SE: Should You Upgrade?
Apple tree in April 2020 unveiled the iPhone SE, a new low-cost iPhone that marries the design of the iPhone eight with the super fast A13 chip in the iPhone 11, all for a super depression $399 price tag.
If you accept an older iPhone, like an iPhone 6s, iPhone seven, or an even earlier iPhone, you lot may be wondering whether it’southward worth the upgrade to a newer device. In a nutshell, the answer is yes, but we’ll walk through the reasons why in the guide below.
Key iPhone SE Features
- Same design as iPhone 8
- Glass body
- 4.7-inch display
- A13 Chip
- Single-lens 12-megapixel camera
- Touch ID
- Wireless charging
- Fast charging
Feature Comparisons and Upgrades
Aforementioned (not Plus) Size and Pattern
The new 2020 iPhone SE is identical to the design that Apple used for iPhones released in 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017, so those upgrading to the SE from the iPhone 6, 6s, 7, or viii can look a device that’due south the exact same size, weight, shape, and design.
The 2020 iPhone SE features a 4.7-inch LCD display, thick top and bottom bezels, and a Touch ID Dwelling button with faster Touch ID responsiveness than was available in many of the original iPhones with Affect ID.
In older iPhones, the Touch ID Home push button was an actual push, but as of the iPhone 7, Apple tree has been using a buttonless button. The button feels like it’south pressing down thanks to haptic feedback, merely it’s actually solid. Information technology won’t feel too different from the button on the iPhone half dozen and 6s, but information technology will have less squish.
Those upgrading from a “Plus” device like the iPhone 6s Plus will not exist able to get a device in the same larger 5.5-inch size, every bit at that place is no “Plus” version of the iPhone SE at this time.
Colors have shifted, with the iPhone SE available in white, blackness, and (PRODUCT)Cerise, but black and white are similar to the well-known silver and infinite gray colors. There is ane major, notable deviation in the design of the iPhone SE compared to older phones – the iPhone SE features a glass front end and back with an aluminum band sandwiching the two pieces together, while the iPhone 6s and other similar iPhones (with the exception of the iPhone 8) had an aluminum trunk.
Aluminum is much more durable than glass, so those upgrading to an iPhone SE from an older phone should be aware that the new iPhone is more fragile and tin easily shatter if dropped without a example onto a hard surface.
For those coming from an original 2016 iPhone SE, the new iPhone SE is a good deal larger, but information technology is, unfortunately, Apple tree’due south smallest telephone. The 4-inch form factor has been retired, and information technology’due south unlikely that Apple volition revive information technology.
No Headphone Jack
If you’re planning to upgrade to the iPhone SE from an iPhone six or 6s, so you demand to know that there is no headphone jack on the iPhone SE. Apple removed the headphone jack from the iPhone with the iPhone 7, and subsequent iPhones have not included a headphone jack.
That means if you lot have wired headphones that utilise the 3.5mm headphone jack, you’ll need an adapter that lets them connect to the Lightning port on the iPhone or you’ll demand to transition to a Bluetooth-based solution like the AirPods.
Haptic Touch Instead of 3D Affect
If you’re upgrading from an iPhone 6s, vii, or 8, you might exist used to the 3D Touch feature that lets you admission hidden menus and other features when pressing a finger down on the iPhone’s brandish.
The iPhone SE doesn’t have 3D Affect, but information technology does have something similar – Haptic Touch. Haptic Touch isn’t quite the same thing because in that location’s no pressure sensitivity, just it acts in the same way and tin can accomplish the same tasks.
More Water Resistance
The first iPhone that was advertised every bit beingness water resistant was the iPhone 7, so if y’all have an iPhone 6 or 6s, water resistance is a major bonus feature that you’ll get when yous upgrade considering you won’t demand to worry about using the iPhone in the rain, accidentally dropping it in a puddle, and other accidental liquid exposure.
The iPhone SE has an IP67 water and dust resistance rating, which means it is impervious to dust and can withstand beingness dunked in water up to one meter deep for 30 minutes. Waterproofing isn’t ever permanent and Apple
does not cover water damage
with its warranty, so it’s however best to keep it away from liquids. If in that location is adventitious exposure, though, the iPhone SE will well-nigh likely come out unscathed.
A glass trunk might sound similar a downside when it comes to durability, but it does enable a characteristic that older iPhones didn’t take – wireless charging. Wireless charging allows the iPhone SE to exist charged using any Qi-based wireless charger, which is handy considering there are tons of these chargers on the marketplace now.
Wireless charging means an iPhone can be set up down on a Qi-based wireless charger to initiate charging, with no need to hassle with the Lightning port and a cable. Wireless charging maxes out at vii.5W and then it’due south non the best solution if y’all need ability quick, but it’s perfect for trickle charging during the day or charging the iPhone on a night stand up at night.
When you’re in a hurry and have an iPhone that’southward shut to dead, a feature similar the iPhone SE’s fast charging tin come in handy. The iPhone SE can charge to 50 percentage within 30 minutes using a USB-C to Lightning cable and an 18W+ power adapter.
You lot might already have a USB-C power adapter on hand if you take a recent Mac or iPad (whatsoever Mac or iPad power adapter that’s USB-C can accuse your iPhone with the right cable), but otherwise these components demand to be purchased separately because the iPhone SE ships with a 5W ability adapter and a standard USB-A to Lightning cable.
Luckily, USB-C cables and advisable 18W chargers can be picked upward pretty cheaply on Amazon.
Top of the Line Processor and Speed
If you accept an iPhone 6, 6s, or 7, it’due south probably starting to feel slow, especially if y’all’ve upgraded to iOS 12 or iOS 13, which accept features designed for more modern iPhones.
The iPhone SE, with the aforementioned A13 Bionic bit that’southward in the iPhone xi and 11 Pro, is much, much faster than the fries used in Apple’s older iPhones because scrap applied science has come up so far in the last few years. Using an iPhone SE after using an older iPhone will be the most notable change because everything will feel smoother, speedier, and more seamless with no lag and other hiccups that you lot might be used to.
Apps will open faster, games volition perform better, webpages will load quicker in Safari, you’ll exist able to open up the camera faster and snap a pic, and it’ll just generally experience quicker regardless of what you’re doing.
The A13 Bionic scrap is the fastest smartphone chip that Apple has released. Simply look at benchmarks comparing the iPhone 11 (which has the same chip every bit the SE) with the iPhone 6, 6s, 7, and viii. It’s an incredible departure that yous will be able to feel in solar day to twenty-four hour period usage.
Co-ordinate to Apple, the iPhone SE’s CPU is up to 2.4x faster than the A9 chip in the iPhone 6s, and the GPU is up to 4x faster.
If you have a 2016 iPhone SE and are thinking of upgrading, the processor in that device is the A9 that was in the iPhone 6s.
Improved Photographic camera with Portrait Mode
Apple’s older iPhones (with the exception of the iPhone 7 Plus and 8 Plus) all had single-lens rear cameras, and the same is truthful of the 2020 iPhone SE. Information technology’s equipped with a 12-megapixel wide-angle camera that isn’t quite equally good as the wide-angle camera in the iPhone xi, but it’southward close.
Though there’s still a single-lens camera, Apple tree is using improved sensor technology in its mod iPhones, which means you’re going to see amend photos from the iPhone SE than you see from the iPhone 6s and other older iPhones. The camera in the SE is better than the camera in the iPhone 8, and seems to be like to the camera in the iPhone XR.
People coming to the 2020 iPhone SE from an older iPhone can wait vivid, vivid photos with true-to-life colors and Smart HDR support, which means much better detail in the areas of the photos that are vivid and dark. It’s not every bit practiced as the flagship iPhones at low lite photography (in that location’due south no Nighttime Manner), but it’s a notable comeback over older devices.
That said, if photography is what you’re going for, yous might desire to accept a await at the iPhone 11 as information technology has two-lens setup with an ultra wide-angle lens, merely for every day use, the SE works smashing. Information technology’south a fantastic smartphone camera at its toll point.
The A13 fleck in the iPhone SE lets it perform some computational photography tricks, enabling multiple features that were absent from older iPhones. The same Smart HDR is powered by the A13, and it also adds Portrait Fashion for creating portrait images of people with artfully blurred backgrounds and Portrait Lighting for adjusting the lighting in those photos.
Equally for video, the iPhone SE offers a lot for the asking price. It’s able to shoot 4K video at 60fps, the same as Apple’southward flagship iPhones, with optical image stabilization and some other useful features like QuickTake video for capturing a quick video by holding downwards the shutter button while in photo manner.
When it comes to the forepart-facing camera, there are definite improvements over the i.2-megapixel photographic camera in the iPhone 6, the 5-megapixel camera in the iPhone 6s, and the 7-megapixel camera in the iPhone seven. The iPhone SE also uses a vii-megapixel camera but with the A13 flake, it can practise Portrait Mode and the image quality is much improved thanks to Apple tree’s software algorithms.
More Storage Space
Apple has increased the base amount of storage that entry-level models get in its recent iPhones, and the iPhone SE is bachelor with 64, 128, or 256GB of storage space. If you program to have a lot of photos, information technology may be worth paying an extra $50 for the 128GB model, particularly if you’re planning to keep the iPhone SE for several years to come.
When originally released, the iPhone six and 6s were limited to sixteen, 64, and 128GB storage options, while the iPhone seven was available with 32, 128, or 256GB of storage. If y’all opted for an iPhone with a lower storage tier like 16GB, the upgrade to a minimum of 64GB will be a huge relief because you won’t need to manage photo storage and app installations as closely.
Good Battery Life
The iPhone SE offers about the same battery life equally the iPhone 8, lasting for up to 13 hours when watching video on device, 8 hours when streaming video, and 40 hours when listening to music.
Information technology’s not as good as the bombardment in the iPhone 11 and xi Pro, which lasts much, much longer, but it’s going to be a solid improvement for most people coming from older iPhones with batteries that accept degraded over time.
Faster WiFi and LTE
The iPhone SE supports Gigabit LTE and it works on more than 25 LTE bands, which is a major improvement over the iPhone half-dozen to the iPhone viii. Gigabit LTE means faster upload and download speeds on a cellular connection, while more LTE band support ways that if y’all travel, your iPhone is more than likely to be able to work in another land.
The iPhone SE too supports WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0, the most modernistic Bluetooth and WiFi specifications. WiFi 6 is faster than the WiFi 5 protocol that has been around for many, many years now, and while it’due south non used everywhere withal, it’s definitely a feature you want on a telephone that you’re going to be using for several years to come.
The iPhone SE offers upwardly to three.2x faster cellular speeds than the iPhone 6s, and up to 38 percent faster WiFi speeds, but existent-world speeds will vary as these statistics are based on theoretical maximums.
Dual-SIM support is also included so you tin can use a secondary SIM when traveling without needing to swap out the SIM, or you tin set up upwardly ii phone numbers on the aforementioned phone – one for work and one for personal use.
eSIM support, also sectional to newer iPhones, makes information technology easier to switch between different carriers.
Tech Spec Listing
Our tech spec comparing covers some of the basic features of the iPhone SE compared to similar features in the iPhone 6, 6s, or vii, providing an at-a-glance overview of what’s improved. Some specs, such equally bombardment life, aren’t able to exist compared equally older iPhones have degraded batteries and differences in battery life due to software upgrades over the years.
- four.7-inch LCD display
- 1334×750 resolution and 326 PPI
- Single 12-megapixel rear camera
- Single 7-megapixel front end camera
- Portrait Mode/Lighting, Smart HDR
- A13 Bionic chip with Neural Engine
- Touch ID
- Haptic Impact
- Lightning connector
- No headphone jack
- IP67-rated water resistance
- Fast charging: 50% charge in 30 min
- Qi-based wireless charging
- Dual SIM (Nano-SIM and eSIM)
- Gigabit-class LTE
- 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6
- Bluetooth 5.0
- 3GB RAM
- four.7-inch LCD display
- 1334×750 resolution and 326 PPI
- Unmarried viii/12/12-megapixel rear camera
- one.2/five/7-megapixel front end camera
- No Portrait Mode
- A8/A9/A10 chip
- Impact ID
- 3D Touch (6s and afterwards)
- Lightning connector
- Headphone jack (6 and 6s)
- No water resistance (six and 6s)
- No fast charging
- No wireless charging
- 16/64/128GB (256GB iPhone 7 only)
- Single SIM
- LTE Advanced
- 802.11ac Wi-Fi 5
- Bluetooth 4.0-four.2
- 1/2/2GB RAM
If you have an iPhone 6s, seven, or 8 (or their Plus versions) yous can trade them in to Apple when purchasing a new SE to go a discount.
Apple offers up to $80 for an iPhone 6s in skilful condition, dropping the $400 cost of the iPhone SE to $320. Apple offers up to $100 for an iPhone 6s Plus, $120 for an iPhone seven, $150 for an iPhone seven Plus, $170 for an iPhone viii, and $250 for an iPhone 8 Plus.
Apple tree even takes old smartphones from companies like LG, HTC, Samsung, Google, and more, then Android users switching over to an iPhone can become a discount too.
Ongoing iOS Support
Apple provides software updates for iPhones long after release, and even the iPhone 6s, manufactured and sold in 2015, is continuing to get the about recent software. Only Apple tree does end offering new updates after approximately four years, and so the iPhone SE and the iPhone 6s are likely nearing their back up end dates and probably won’t be able to upgrade to iOS xiv this autumn.
The iPhone 6 is already stuck on iOS 12 and doesn’t have iOS xiii available, so getting mod software and the latest software capabilities is another reason to upgrade from an aging iPhone 6, 6s, SE, or vii.
The A13 chip in the 2020 iPhone SE is the same chip as the iPhone eleven, which means Apple is going to back up it for years to come up. It will become a skillful four years of updates, which is neat news for those who like to hold on to their iPhones for a long fourth dimension.
The 2020 iPhone SE is, without a doubt, the best value smartphone that Apple has ever released. It keeps up with the modern flagship devices when it comes to processing speed, and while the pattern is dated, it’south still going to appeal to those who similar smaller iPhones and prefer Touch ID to Face ID.
iPhone users who have held on to their iPhone 6, 6s, 7, 8, or even an earlier phone for size preference or cost purposes should have a good look at the iPhone SE because it offers solid hardware at an affordable price, and information technology is a pregnant upgrade over older iPhones.
The iPhone SE is the ideal device for those who are looking for a good deal and for those who like to continue their iPhones for many years because it’s going to keep getting software updates for years to come, thanks to time to come proofing with the latest A-series chip and perks like WiFi 6.
Have a question about the upgrading to the iPhone SE from an older iPhone that we didn’t cover in this guide or encounter an error or something that nosotros left out? Send u.s.a. an e-mail hither.