Comparison of iPhone SE vs iPhone 11: what to buy in 2020


At first, glance, comparing the iPhone SE and iPhone 11 does not make much sense, because SE is $ 300 cheaper than even the basic version 11 of the model. But on the other hand, the “budget” Apple smartphone in 2020 received a number of improvements, including the latest A13 chipset, which gives it excellent performance and top-end hardware components. What else is SE able to offer and does it make sense to overpay for a more expensive smartphone – we understand further.

Compare design

Comparing both models of Apple smartphones, the first thing that catches your eye is size. An iPhone 11 with a 6.1 ”display is significantly larger than 4.7” SE. In the first option, you get more workspace for applications and watching videos, and in the second – convenience, mobility, and compact coverage.

Both Apple smartphones received LCD displays, but the iPhone 11 is responsible for displaying the image with “Liquid Retina HD”, while the SE has “Retina HD”. In simple terms, users only need to know that when comparing the picture on the display 11 looks clearer, although both screens are characterized by the same ppi.

11 vs SE

Apple classic fans will love the fact that the iPhone SE still retains the Home button. In 2020, this model will remain the only one that Apple will continue to release with a physical button. At the same time, the button serves not only as a design element, but also contains a Touch ID sensor. It reads fingerprints to unlock the smartphone and authorize digital payments. In turn, the identification of 11 models is based on biometric scanning of the face using the Face ID sensor located on the front side of the smartphone.

Comparing SE and 11, it is worth mentioning that the first smartphone is available only in red, black, and white colors, and for the second – Apple offers a more extended range of options in nude shades: green, yellow, and purple.

Compare cameras

For everyday use (pictures for social networks or standard video recording), one 12-megapixel SE camera will be enough. But if image quality is important to you or you want more tools for processing photos/videos, then iPhone 11 is able to offer a more winning version of the software and hardware components.

11 vs SE camera compression
On the left – a picture on the iPhone SE camera, on the right – on the iPhone 11

In particular, the second wide-angle lens of the iPhone 11 allows you to receive magnificent photographs of landscapes and no less impressive pictures of nearby objects. In addition, thanks to the Deep Fusion function in low and night light, the Apple smartphone is able to reduce graininess and blurriness of the frame.

When comparing front cameras, there is a clear advantage over the iPhone 11. Not only did its selfie camera get 12 megapixels compared to 7 megapixels SE, but it also can shoot videos in 4K resolution and record videos in slow motion. The capabilities of the SE camera in this aspect, alas, are limited only by 1080p resolution without additional “goodies”.

It should be noted that when it comes to photos and video recording, now few people have priority in comparing the number of megapixels or cameras, because the whole thing is in the processor. Combining the latest A13 Bionic chipset with the latest Apple software takes SE hardware to the next level.

Compare chip and battery

Adherents of the “budget” version of the iPhone SE should be pleased that both smartphones are equipped with the latest Apple A13 Bionic chipset. Moreover, a comparison of the performance of both models on Geekbench 5 and 3DMark showed almost the same results (not to mention the fact that SE, in comparison with the Pixel 4, Galaxy S20, and OnePlus 8 Pro turned out to be much better).

geekbench single score

3D mark

According to official data indicated on the Apple website, the battery of the first version of SE is not inferior to the battery life of the iPhone 8. Accordingly, the updated version of the smartphone provides performance no worse than that of the opponent – iPhone 11. According to CNET, in offline mode “B on an airplane ”with continuous video playback, both smartphones work the same way: about 15.5 hours.


Obviously, over the past few years, the iPhone SE received a lot of updates by 2020: wireless charging, an improved camera, and water resistance (although for this I had to sacrifice a headphone jack, unfortunately for some users of Apple technology). If your priority is the desire to update your smartphone, but at a minimum cost, then SE is the best option.