iPhone SE 2 vs. iPhone 11 Buyer’s Guide

The second-generation iPhone SE and the iPhone 11 are low-cost iPhone options. Apple released the ‌iPhone 11‌ in late 2019, and has bumped it down in price since then to make it more accessible as new ‌iPhone‌ models have been released. On the other hand, the ‌iPhone SE‌ launched in early 2020 as a low-cost ‌iPhone‌ option, prior to being replaced by the third-generation model in 2022.

iphone se vs
Should you get the smaller, entry-level ‌iPhone‌ or the larger, standard model that has come down in price? Our guide helps to answer the question of how to decide which of these two iPhones is best for you.

Comparing the iPhone SE and the iPhone 11

The ‌iPhone SE‌ and ‌iPhone 11‌ share a number of features, such as 4K video recording, water resistance, and Qi wireless charging. Apple lists these identical features of the ‌iPhone SE‌ and ‌iPhone 11‌:

Similarities

Apple’s breakdown shows that the iPhones share a large number of notable key features, such as the A13 Bionic chip, a Retina HD display, and a 12MP rear camera. Even so, there are meaningful differences between the ‌iPhone SE‌ and ‌iPhone 11‌, such as their display sizes and authentication technologies.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy

Differences

Read on for a closer look at each of these aspects, and see what exactly both low-cost iPhones have to offer.

Design and Colors

The design and form factors of the ‌iPhone SE‌ and ‌iPhone 11‌ differ significantly. Although both devices share rounded edges, use aerospace-grade aluminum, and have glass backs, the ‌iPhone SE‌ has thick borders along the top and bottom of the display, as well as a Home Button. The ‌iPhone 11‌ features an all-screen design with no Home Button, with a TrueDepth camera array cutout at the top of the display.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
The design of the ‌iPhone SE‌ is the same as the ‌iPhone‌ 8, which shared a similar design to older devices like the ‌iPhone‌ 6, ‌iPhone‌ 6S, and ‌iPhone‌ 7. The ‌iPhone 11‌ has a more modern design owing to its all-screen look, a “notch” out of the top of the display, and no Home Button. If you like the older style of ‌iPhone‌ with a Home Button or simply prefer a smaller device, you will want to buy the ‌iPhone SE‌, but most users are likely to prefer the more current design of the ‌iPhone 11‌.

See also  Apple's Work on a Foldable iPad: What We Know

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
The ‌iPhone 11‌ is taller and wider than the ‌iPhone SE‌ and is 31 percent heavier, so for the most pocketable and lightweight ‌iPhone‌ that is also easier to use with one hand, the ‌iPhone SE‌ will be a better choice.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
Both devices are available in Black, White, and PRODUCT(RED), but the ‌iPhone 11‌ also offers additional Purple, Yellow, and Green color options, which some users may prefer.

Display

Both devices feature a Retina HD LCD display with 326 ppi, IPS technology, True Tone, P3 Wide Color, ‌Haptic Touch‌, and up to 625 nits brightness, but the display of the ‌iPhone 11‌ is considerably larger. The ‌iPhone SE‌’s display is 4.7-inches, while the ‌iPhone 11‌’s display is 6.1-inches.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
For the likes of consuming media, reading, and playing games, the additional 1.4-inches of screen space may offer a better experience, although it may be slightly more unwieldy in the hand.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy

Touch ID vs. Face ID

Another major area of difference between the two devices is authentication technology. The ‌iPhone SE‌ features a ‌Touch ID‌ scanner built into the Home Button below the display, while the ‌iPhone 11‌ features ‌Face ID‌ like all of Apple’s more premium iPhones.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
‌Face ID‌ debuted on the ‌‌iPhone‌‌ X in 2017. At the time, Apple said the probability that a random person could unlock someone else’s ‌‌iPhone‌‌ X was approximately one in 1,000,000, versus one in 50,000 for ‌‌Touch ID‌‌. That being said, both forms of authentication are quite safe.

‌Face ID‌ does not work well with masks, while ‌Touch ID‌ does not work well with wet or sweaty fingertips, so neither system is perfect. Since the new ‌iPhone SE‌ lacks ‌Face ID‌, it does not support Animoji or Memoji. Which authentication system you prefer is ultimately up to you.

Cameras

Despite both having a 12MP rear wide camera with an ƒ/1.8 aperture, 4K video recording capability, and optical image stabilization, the camera setups of both devices are very different.

Rear Cameras

The ‌iPhone 11‌ has two rear cameras, offering a Wide and an Ultra Wide lens. The ‌iPhone SE‌ has a single, Wide camera on the rear. The Ultra Wide camera gives the ‌iPhone 11‌ a two-times optical zoom range. The ‌iPhone 11‌ can also take high-quality photos in low-light environments using Night mode, as well as use Deep Fusion to show more detail in photos.

See also  Just Install iOS 15? Here's Where to Start

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
Although the video recording capability of both devices is the same, the ‌iPhone 11‌ can use a feature called Audio zoom to isolate sound when shooting zoomed-in video. If you are hoping to take a large number of photos and videos, you may prefer the added camera capabilities of the ‌iPhone 11‌, but the ‌iPhone SE‌ still has a high quality camera that is adequate for most people’s use-cases.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy

Front-Facing Cameras

The ‌iPhone SE‌ has a 7MP ‌FaceTime‌ HD front-facing camera that can record 1080p video with Auto HDR, but the ‌iPhone 11‌ has a much better 12MP TrueDepth front-facing camera that can record 4K video with Smart HDR and slo-mo. If you use the front-facing camera a lot, such as for selfies or video calls, the ‌iPhone 11‌’s considerably better front-facing camera will be worth getting over the ‌iPhone SE‌.

Battery Life

When playing back video, the ‌iPhone SE‌ can deliver up to 13 hours of battery life, while the ‌iPhone 11‌ can deliver up to 17 hours. When it comes to streaming video, this translates to eight hours of battery life for the ‌iPhone SE‌ and ten hours for the ‌iPhone 11‌. When playing back audio, the ‌iPhone SE‌ can deliver up to 40 hours of battery life, but the ‌iPhone 11‌ can deliver up to 65 hours.

The battery life of both devices should still be good enough for normal daily usage, but if you often find yourself draining your battery prematurely, you may benefit from the ‌iPhone 11‌’s added battery life.

Other Features

Both of these devices feature water resistance for up to 30 minutes, but the ‌iPhone SE‌ has an IP67 rating for water up to one meter deep, while the ‌iPhone 11‌ has an IP68 rating for water up to two meters deep. This is unlikely to be a relevant consideration for most users, but the ‌iPhone 11‌ is clearly more durable for those who regularly use their ‌iPhone‌ around water.

See also  Apple Studio Display

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
Moreover, the ‌iPhone 11‌ features the U1 Ultra Wideband chip for spatial awareness, which allows it to track AirTags or work as a digital car key. The ‌iPhone 11‌ also supports Dolby Atmos audio playback through its built-in speakers, but the quality is unlikely to be good enough to notice much difference compared to the ‌iPhone SE‌. These features are not essential so it is up to you if you feel you would get use out of them.

Other iPhone Options

The ‌iPhone SE‌ and ‌iPhone 11‌ are the cheapest ‌iPhone‌ options Apple currently sells at $399 and $499, but if you are looking for a more recent device with newer features, there is also the iPhone 12 mini, which starts at $599, and the iPhone 12, which starts at $699.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
If getting a smaller ‌iPhone‌ is your priority, and that is why you are considering the ‌iPhone SE‌, the ‌iPhone 12 mini‌ is physically smaller but has a larger 5.4-inch display and much better technical specifications. The ‌iPhone 12‌, on the other hand, has the same 6.1-inch display as the ‌iPhone 11‌, but is slightly smaller owing to slimmer bezels and flat edges.

The ‌iPhone 12‌ models feature a more modern squared-off design that is thinner and lighter, OLED displays with HDR, the A14 chip, Ceramic Shield front glass, MagSafe, and improved cameras, making for a noticeable improvement over the ‌iPhone 11‌ if you can afford it.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the ‌iPhone SE‌ is a good entry-level ‌iPhone‌ option if you can find it for a reasonable price. With the same display, A13 chip, and rear 12MP Wide camera as the ‌iPhone 11‌, ‌iPhone SE‌ users will not miss out on any major features.

iPhone SE 2020 Side Cropped for Feature copy
For just $499, the ‌iPhone 11‌ offers a more modern design, a larger display, an Ultra Wide camera, Night mode and Deep Fusion, a considerably better front-facing camera, and longer battery life. There is also the benefit of improved water resistance, the U1 chip, and Dolby Atmos audio playback, and even additional color options to choose from. All of this makes for a fairly significant upgrade over the ‌iPhone SE‌ if you can afford the extra cost.

Related Posts

What’s New With the Health App in iOS 15: Data Sharing, Lab Result Improvements, COVID Vaccine Records and More

Apple made some notable improvements to the Health app in iOS 15, primarily focused on helping iPhone users care for elderly parents and others who might need…

iPad Mini 6 Rumors

iPad Mini 6 Launched! Apple introduced the iPad mini 6 in September 2021 alongside new iPhones. As rumors predicted, the tablet has an updated 8.3-inch screen size…

Everything New With the iOS 15 Notes and Reminders Apps

Those who use the Notes and Reminders apps will be pleased to hear that iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 bring some useful new features. The Notes app…

iOS 15 Safari Guide: Tabs, Extensions, Search Bar, and Other Changes

Apple’s Safari app has undergone a number of changes during the iOS 15 beta testing process. Apple started out with a radical new design that moved the…

Apple Watch Series 7 Rumors

Apple Watch Series 7 Announced! Apple announced the Apple Watch Series 7 in September 2021 alongside the new iPhones, and the Series 7 was a surprise because…

What to Expect at the September 14 Apple Event: iPhone 13, Apple Watch Series 7, and More

Apple is holding its annual iPhone-centric event on Tuesday, September 14, and like last year, it will be entirely digital. We’ve been hearing rumors about what’s coming…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.