Is the iPhone SE Still a Good Phone?

Compared to the iPhone X, there are plenty of good reasons to invest in the iPhone SE. This is one of the best iPhones that Apple has delivered. Instead of costing $1000 like the iPhone X, this one will set you back at just $350.

If you’re wanting something affordable as well as powerful and durable, then the iPhone SE may be the one to consider.

Let’s look at some of the features

Combined with a great price of $350 the iPhone has 32GB storage and is extremely powerful.

The chip in the iPhone SE is the same as you will find in the iPhone 6S and the recently introduced iPad.

It’s known as the Apple A9 and has plenty of horsepower for a phone. Apple states that it is the most powerful 4” phone ever and this is entirely due to the chip.

The phone is more than just a device for calling your mates on. The A9 powers video recordings as well as high definition games. It powers pretty much everything you ever want to do with your phone.

While the iPhone SE does not offer image stabilization or wide-color capture like some of the more modern phones, you will find that you have everything from 4K video to HDR photos at your fingertips.

And yes, you can take ‘live pics’ with the iPhone as you can on any other modern iPhone. You will notice that the pictures are crisp and beautifully detailed. Although the aperture is slightly different from more modern iPhones, the camera is the same as what you will find in the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 8 line. It is also the same as what is in the iPhone X.

So, how does the iPhone SE compare with the iPhone 5S?


The iPhone SE comes in an aluminum casing and has matte chamfered edges whereas the 5S comes in a brushed aluminum casing with shiny chamfered edges.

The SE weighs 113 grams while the 5S weighs 112 grams. The SE is 7.6mm thick and the 5S is 7.6mm thick.

The SE’s colors are space grey/ silver/gold/rose gold while the 5S comes in grey/silver/gold.

For some time now the 5S has been regarded as the most beautiful iPhone that Apple has ever made, and it is still regarded as this by many people.

The screen

The iPhone SE has a 4” IPS LCD screen and so does the iPhone 5S. Everything about the two screens is the same with both having the same resolution of 1,136 x 640, and both have a PPI of 326.

So, bearing this in mind, if you prefer a 4” screen then either of the two iPhones will suit you.

Although the bigger screens may appear better, the 4” screen ranks as the third-best in Apple’s range of smartphones.

The camera

The SE comes with 12MP, an aperture lens of f/2.2, and a 1/3” sensor while the 5S has 8MP, an aperture lens of f/2.2, and a 1/3” sensor as well.

The SE has 1.22 µm pixel size and the 5S has 1.5 µm pixel size.

The SE delivers live photos, 4K video, 240fps@720p slo-mo. The 5S provides 1080p video, 120fps@720p slo-mo.

Both iPhones make use of a dual-tone LED flash. This is supposed to give a softer and more natural tone to the skin. It does seem to work. You will notice that the pictures lack the artificial glare in other iPhones.

One thing that Apple has not changed on either phone is the selfie feature. It is 1.2MP on both phones, although because of the A9 processor, you will get slightly better pictures on the SE.


The iPhone SE has 2GB RAM while the 5S has 1GB RAM. The SE comes with the Apple A9 1.84GHz Dual-Core ‘Twister’ CPU while the 5S comes with the Apple A7 1.3GHz Dual-Core ‘Cyclone’ CPU.

Storage on the SE is 16GB/64GN while the 5S has 16GB/32GB/64GB.

There is a noticeable difference between the 5S to the SE, particularly when playing intensive games. The SE performs better than the 5S.

The SE has 2GB RAM which is almost double that of the 5S so you will notice that the performance is far better. Apps will stay active for longer in the background and be pulled up instantly.

The SE still has base storage of 16GB which is the same as the 5S. Apple does make a 64GB version of the SE which may be a better buy.

Battery and additional features

The SE comes with a 1624 mAh battery while the 5S has a 1560 mAh battery. Both have a Touch ID. The SE comes with Apple Pay while the 5S does not have this feature.

While it is well-known that smaller phones have smaller batteries simply because there is less space for them, the iPhone SE has made some improvements in this department. The SE offers 10 extra hours of audio, 3 extra hours of video, and 3 extra hours of wi-fi.

Apple also claims that the battery life for the SE is 50% better than that of the 5S.

Both iPhones have a Touch ID fingerprint sensor built into the home button. The SE does not use the same sensor as the 6S which is a shame as this may have speeded things up. However, compared to the 5S the SE is significantly faster due to the A9 CPU.


While the two phones look (and even feel) almost identical the iPhone SE vs 5S has had much better upgrades done to it to make it far superior to the 5S.

Not only is the SE significantly faster than the 5S, but it also has better battery life. The picture quality of the SE outshines that of the 5S.

Possibly the most important aspect that gives the SE the overall edge over the 5S is the Apple Pay feature. Now you can pop to the store and make payments right from your iPhone.

For a smaller iPhone, the SE is possibly one of the best on the market, and one of the best in the price range for smaller phones. It is well worth switching to the iPhone SE.

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