2021 iPhone SE 2 Singapore Price and Review
Back in 2016, tech-giant Apple, Inc. launched the ground-breaking iPhone SE, a good-quality iPhone that, for the first time ever, made the Apple ecosystem accessible at budget-friendly prices. Although not as powerful as its higher-end, more expensive siblings, the 2020 Singapore iPhone SE 2 delivered on its promise of the essential Apple iPhone experience, and was a huge hit for users who didn’t want to spend so much money on power and performance that they didn’t even need for their day-to-day use.
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This year, Apple unveiled an update to the iPhone SE, giving it a solid redesign and outfitting it with more current parts for improved performance for the modern user. Still holding the title of Cheapest iPhone Ever, the new and improved 2020 iPhone SE is available at the same budget price tag of the original 2016 model, but will come with vastly improved features to make it one of the best smartphones to come out this year.
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iPhone SE 2020 Singapore Review
Without further ado, here’s our in-depth review on the Apple iPhone SE 2020. Read on to find out whether or not this iPhone is the best smartphone for you.
+ Still the cheapest iPhone ever
+ Updated internals pack plenty of performance punch
+ Lightweight build for users looking for a little more portability
+ Great camera for the price
– Outdated but still decent display
– No 3.5mm headphone jack
– Not the best battery life
What’s Inside the iPhone SE?
Before we go into the nitty-gritty of how the Singapore iPhone SE 2020 performs in a variety of categories, let’s delve under the hood and find out what’s inside this newly revamped budget smartphone.
Apple A13 Bionic Chipset
While the original iPhone SE that came out in 2016 launched with an already dated A9 chipset, the new 2020 model comes with the A13 Bionic Chipset, which is currently the fastest smartphone processor ever made. The A13 Bionic is also what powers last-year’s iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro, so it definitely packs plenty of power and performance. In fact, until the iPhone 12 comes out later this year with the expected A14 chip, the A13 Bionic will remain the fastest smartphone chip ever made, so you can rest assured that the iPhone SE 2020 will perform almost as well as the top-of-the-line smartphones of 2019.
4.7-inch Retina HD IPS Display
If it were on an $800 iPhone, we’d probably be complaining. However, for the price being offered for the iPhone SE 2020, the Retina HD IPS Display that comes with it seems fair – and, since it’s an Apple Retina Display, it’s in no way a bad screen. Compared to the original 2016 iPhone SE, however, the quality and performance of the new display on the new 2020 iPhone SE is a huge improvement.
Featuring a larger 4.7-inch screen compared to the original’s 4-inch display, the iPhone 2020 still has the same 326 PPI, but comes with better 1400:1 contrast, True Tone, and support for P3 Wide Color Gamut, so it’s far more vibrant and color-accurate. It’s a lot brighter, too, at 625 nits over the original’s 500 nits.
12MP Single Sensor Camera
When comparing the iPhone SE 2016’s camera with that of the new iPhone SE 2020, there simply is no contest. The iPhone SE 2020’s camera blows away that of the original with much more features and a new imaging sensor. Although both cameras are 12MP, the new iPhone SE is simply outfitted with far more advanced features that allow it to capture and record in much higher quality than most smartphones in this price range.
1,821 mAh Battery
The new iPhone SE 2020’s 1,821 mAh battery may not be a huge improvement over the original’s 1,624 mAh (which is a slight cause of concern because of the new model’s much higher-powered components) but it does support Wireless Qi charging so even though you can expect to be charging your device a little more often than you might like, it still affords you the convenience of wireless charging.
Storage and Memory
The new iPhone SE comes with much more attractive storage options starting at 64GB as opposed to the original’s abysmal 16GB. If you want more storage, 128GB and 256GB options are also available at higher prices. No matter what storage option you choose, the iPhone SE comes with 3GB RAM.
Should you buy Singapore iPhone SE?
Now that we’ve had a look at what the iPhone SE 2020 is packing under the hood, let’s see how these parts and components come together to provide users with a genuine Apple iPhone experience. In this review, we’ll be looking at how the iPhone SE 2020 handles everyday tasks, how its display performs in different use-cases and under different kinds of lighting, how well its battery keeps up with regular use, and how well its design language compares to the rest of the Apple ecosystem.
With the A13 Bionic Chipset, the iPhone SE 2020 is far more powerful than the iPhone 8 that it’s tailored after. The upgraded engine allows for plenty of performance so apps are faster and more responsive. Powered by the same processor that’s in the latest iPhone 11 Pro, the budget iPhone SE even manages to perform at par with its higher-end $1000+ cousin. The extra power provided by the A13 Bionic helps improve smartphone speed and performance across all use-cases. Whether you’re opening apps or switching between them, or performing everyday tasks, or snapping and editing pictures, everything feels smooth and snappy.
Of course, the iPhone SE doesn’t offer the exact same performance as a smartphone that’s double its price (although it can get pretty close). While the new SE does come with the same A13 Bionic chipset, the same Apple GPU, and the same high-speed NVMe storage as the iPhone 11, it comes with a little less RAM at 3GB. That’s 1GB more than the 2GB offered by the 2016 iPhone SE, but also 1GB less than the iPhone 11. Although 1GB may not seem like much, it means a world of difference if you like to multitask on your device.
It’s not going to win any awards for best smartphone display ever, but for its price, the Retina HD IPS Display on the iPhone SE 2020 is still a good display. It’s not OLED, so it won’t come with any of those neat OLED features, but it is a multi-touch LCD display so you’ll still get plenty of responsiveness and all of the Retina display goodness that you can expect from older iPhones.
That said, with a price tag of under $400 and performance that can compete with the much more expensive iPhone 11, Apple had to cut corners somewhere, and they did so on this display. It’s not a bad display per-se, but it’s definitely older tech and not as good as the displays on newer, more expensive iPhones.
Despite being a little outdated, the display does perform surprisingly well, and fares far better than the 2016 model’s display. Featuring up to 625 nits of brightness, 1400:1 contrast ratio, P3 wide color gamut, and True Tone, the display manages to deliver a bright, vibrant image, but struggles in brightly-lit areas, so users might struggle using the phone under direct sunlight.
While the original iPhone SE 2016 was tailored after older pre-5th generation iPhones, the new iPhone SE features a more modern design that borrows everything from the iPhone 8 – and we mean everything. The iPhone SE 2020 features the exact same design as the iPhone 8 which came out in 2017. Because it’s design goes back to the iPhone 8, it’s far more lightweight than any of Apple’s current handsets. It’s not as lightweight as the smaller and typically lighter iPhone 6 and iPhone 7, but compared to the latest iPhone 11 and even the recent iPhone X, it’s significantly lighter, and thinner, too.
The borrowed iPhone 8 design also harkens back to the days when iPhones still had thick bezels, which are a far cry from today’s smartphones which feature all-screen displays. While it’s not an end-to-end visual experience, the design keeps the device familiar and comfortable to use, especially if you’re used to bezels, and the 4.7-inch display is still large enough to work perfectly with modern apps.
The iPhone 8 from 2017 was definitely a well-built phone, and since it features the exact same body and design, the same goes for the new iPhone SE 2020. It’s made of aluminum, so it’s lightweight and feels solid just like later iPhones, and it’s Gorilla Glass front and back panels provide plenty of protection and durability. The glass back panel also makes it possible for the iPhone SE to support Qi wireless charging. The new iPhone SE is IP67 certified for water and dust resistance which means its highly spill-proof and splash-proof, and is waterproof up to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes.
The battery life on the new iPhone SE 2020 is pretty mediocre. Granted, it’s a slightly larger battery than the original iPhone SE, but with far more powerful components. Despite the highly-regarded power efficiency of the A13 Bionic, the new iPhone SE still struggles to hold a charge longer than a full day of regular use.
However, its battery problems are easily cancelled out by the availability of 18W charging right out of the box, and if you have a wireless charging station, the new iPhone SE supports that, too. It may not have the best battery life, but charging up on the go is still very convenient thanks to its charging options.
The new iPhone SE is the cheapest iPhone ever, and is available at a price of S$555 ($399 USD) for the 64GB version, S$625 ($449 USD) for the 128GB version, and S$764 ($549 USD) for the 256GB version.
Overall, the new iPhone SE is a great smartphone, and one of the best phones you can get at this price range. It’s a great pick for those who want affordable access to the Apple ecosystem, and will likely last you up to four years without needing to upgrade. For a $400 smartphone, the iPhone SE packs a punch in terms of raw power and performance, and its camera is still one of the best you can get at this price range thanks to the advanced features provided by Apple software.
Of course, if you’re looking for the latest high-end features and an award-winning display, you’re better off looking at more expensive options like the iPhone 11 Pro, but if you want the best price-to-performance ratio bundled with a genuine Apple iPhone experience, then you can’t go wrong with the iPhone SE 2020.