It’s here, finally here. Apple, after long series of rumors and leaks, has launched the all-new (or, is it?) second-generation of 2016’s iPhone SE, which the Cupertino giant simply calls… iPhone SE. Not iPhone 9. Not iPhone SE 2. However, to our ease, we shall be addressing it as either iPhone SE 2020 or iPhone SE 2 throughout. We all knew the new low-cost iPhone was coming but, to surprise, Apple silently dropped the phone via an online press release on its official newsroom with a compelling $399 price tag, and NPR 70,000 as starting price in Nepal for iPhone SE 2020 (64GB).
iPhone SE 2020: “Blast from the Past” Design
- 4.7-inch Retina IPS
- 750 x 1334 pixels, 326 PPI density
- 138.4 x 67.3 x 7.3 mm in dimension
- IP67 dust/water resistant
Starting with the outlooks, the new iPhone SE isn’t exactly all-new. Not what we expect in 2020 when the smartphones are heading towards the all-screen display and under-screen biometrics. The iPhone SE 2020 comes in the iPhone 8-skin: thick forehead atop, a larger chin incorporating the classic sapphire-cut Touch ID home button, and a single rear camera on the back.
This doesn’t go without saying, the new iPhone SE measures identical to the iPhone 8 — 4.7-inch Retina True Tone HD display and wrapped in aerospace-grade aluminum and glass. However, probably first-time ever in this price bracket, either for an iPhone or any other smartphones, it features an IP67 rating for water resistance up to 1 meter for 30 minutes. And unsurprisingly, there’s no 3.5mm headphone jack.
Unlike the tons of color options to choose from for iPhone 11 lineups and iPhone XR, the iPhone SE 2020 comes in three colors — black, white, and (PRODUCT) RED.
Single but Capable 12MP Camera
- 12 MP, f/1.8 (wide), PDAF, OIS
- Dual-LED dual-tone flash, HDR
- 4K @ 60FPS and 1080p Slow-mo at 240FPS
- 7 MP, f/2.2 Selfie camera, gyro-EIS
Megapixels don’t matter. If things are done well, a 12MP sensor can be as capable as those crazy-numbered megapixels. And that’s what Apple (and single-camera Pixel devices) have proved with proper software optimization.
Said that, diving back to iPhone SE, Apple has included 12MP f/1.8 wide-angle single lens on the back, which the company boasts “the best single-camera system ever in an iPhone.” Apple shares some snaps to back the statement. (below) The 12MP camera sports some mention-worthy flagship feature of iPhone 11 series: Portrait mode, all six Portrait Lighting effects, Smart HDR, Depth Control, and can shoot stunning 4K at 60 frames-per-second with industry-leading video stabilization and extended dynamic range for up to 30 frames-per-second.
On the fascia, a 7MP, f/2.2 sits on the forehead, equally capable of taking Portraits and shooting at stabilized 1080p at 30 frames-per-second. But no Face ID.
Flagship Chipset, Fresh Software
- A13 Bionic (7 nm+), Hexa-core
- Apple GPU (4-core graphics)
- iOS 13
Don’t take the “low-budget” tagline seriously, because Apple has made sure you don’t. The iPhone SE packs the A13 Bionic chipset, the very same that powers the $1000 iPhone 11 family. And this results in improved photography, gaming and AR experiences. Furthermore, the iPhone SE 2 is available in three storage variants: 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB, which is quite an upgrade for the first-gen iPhone SE that came with a 16GB storage base model. And like what Apple does with every iPhone, the RAM on the iPhone SE 2 is undisclosed, however, we can speculate it to be either 2 or 3GB RAM.
Speaking of the software, it runs on fresh iOS 13 out of the box and features Dark Mode, Haptic Touch Support, Sign In with Apple, all-new Maps, and more. Being an Apple device, we know the iPhone SE 2 will receive steady software updates for years to come.
Wireless Charging is icing on the cake
- 5W brick in the box, 18W Qi-certified fast charging
- 50% in 30 min
Sure, this isn’t a deal-breaker but, of course, the inclusion of wireless charging is the icing on the cake. The iPhone SE 2020 sports Qi-certified 10W wireless charging, and capable of charging the device up to 50 percent with 30 mins plug-in, courtesy of 18W fast charging. However, disappointingly, only the 5W brick is shipped with the box.
There is no official word on the battery capacity, but Apple confirms it has the same battery life as the iPhone 8.
For the connectivity, the iPhone SE 2 includes Wi-Fi 6, Gigabit LTE, Bluetooth 5, dual-SIM whereas the secondary SIM is an e-SIM, and Lightning port. If someone is curious about the possibility of 5G support, that would be too good to be true for this low-cost iPhone.
Pricing Done Right
Keeping features and hardware aside, this $399 / £419 / AU$749 starting price tag (for 64GB base model) sets the iPhone SE 2 right in the front line of the mid-range smartphone category, making it harder for the upcoming Pixel 4a and OnePlus Z. And the 128GB variant retails at $449, while the top-tier 256GB model is priced at $549. In India, the iPhone SE price starts at INR 42,500 for the 64GB model, with no information on 128GB and 256GB variants’ pricing.
The iPhone SE 2020 is available to preorder on Apple’s official online store and Apple Store app beginning April 17, while the brick-and-mortar outlets will see starting April 21. The tech giant shares, a portion from the iPhone SE (PRODUCT) RED sales will be donated to Global Fund’s COVID-19 Response.
iPhone SE 2020 Price in Nepal and Availability
$399 for an A13-equipped iPhone sounds reasonable and right, of course. However, this might sound off for the Nepali smartphone market, because when the iPhone SE 2020 drops in Nepal, the pricing might get at par with premium Android smartphones. Nonetheless, we are not complaining here.
The iPhone SE 2020 price in Nepal is NPR 70,000 for the 64GB variant. While the mid-tier iPhone SE 2020 (128GB) price in Nepal is NPR 79,500, and NPR 96,000 for the 256GB model.
iPhone SE 2020 Pricing
|Model||US||UK||Australia||Price in Nepal|
|iPhone SE 2020 (64GB)||$399||£419||AU$749||NPR 70,000|
|iPhone SE 2020 (128GB)||$468||£469||AU$829||NPR 79,500|
|iPhone SE 2020 (256GB)||$569||£569||AU$999||NPR 96,000|
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