iphone se versus iphone 5s – Apple didn’t come up with a new design for the smaller iPhone SE. Instead, they’ve reused the old iPhone 5s with new internals. It’s an odd move, which we witness for the first time – it’s like reusing the same looks of a phone model third generation in a row. And that from the company, that practically invented the two-year phone redesign cycle.
One way to interpret this move is to conclude Apple is taking the easy road and is merely recycling an existing chassis design to produce a lower-cost iPhone without hurting margins. Another possible interpretation is that they are reviving the iconic iPhone 5/5s design in an attempt to cater to a group of users who not only want a cheaper iPhone but would also prefer the smaller form factor. After all, a third of Apple users are still using older 4-inch smartphones.
The jury is still out on which one of these two might be the reasoning for this model, but whichever it is, we’re not here to judge. This task would be up to Apple customers. Our job is only to evaluate how good the latest iPhone is and we intend to do just that.
But first thing’s first – here’s a refresher on the specs. The iPhone SE has the 4″ Retina display of the iPhone 5s, its first-gen Touch ID sensor, an identical chassis, but on the inside, it comes with the new Apple A9 chip with 2GB of RAM, the new 12MP main snapper, and a slightly bigger battery.
Read more: simontok
- 4″ 16M-color LED-backlit IPS LCD of 640 x 1136px resolution, 326ppi
- Apple iOS 9
- Dual-core 1.8 GHz Twister 64-bit CPU, PowerVR GT7600 GPU, 2GB of RAM, Apple A9 SoC
- 12MP F/2.2 camera with True tone LED flash, phase detection auto focus, [email protected], [email protected], @60fps and @120fps video recording, 720p video recording @120fps and 240fps
- 1.2MP F/2.4 front-facing camera, HDR mode, [email protected] video
- Comes in 16 and 64 GB of built-in storage
- First-gen Touch ID fingerprint sensor
- 4G LTE Cat.4 (150Mbps); Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac; Bluetooth 4.2; Lightning port; GPS with A-GPS and GLONASS; NFC (Apple Pay only)
- 1,624 mAh battery, Power saving mode
- No 3D Touch
- No microSD slot
- Lacks optical image stabilization
- NFC functionality limited to Apple Pay
- No wireless charging, an infrared port, or FM radio
- No enhanced resistance to liquids or dust
- No user-replaceable battery
Apple’s restrictions have been around for years, so they shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone – you can’t have expandable memory, fast or wireless charging, FM radio, swappable batteries, among others. The new 3D Touch tech isn’t present either for obvious reasons though you can still capture Live Photos.
The iPhone SE has this nice nostalgic feeling of the good old iPhones when they were always shaking the market, and its compact size and powerful hardware will be appreciated by many. It will hardly attract any new users to Apple’s platform, but will allow those who are stuck in the past to level up.
iphone se versus iphone 5s – It’s that time of year again and Apple’s in the usual record-breaking mood at the box-office. This is an S year in the Cupertino calendar but different enough – it may be that two phones instead of one account for almost double last year’s record sales. We can only guess as to which one contributed how, but this is hardly the point. We have the latest flagship reporting for duty and it will be both the main course and the desert, considering the 5c didn’t quite impress as an appetizer.
As with every “S” version of the iPhone the changes are subtle but not illusory. There’s no new design obviously, no bigger screen or a bump in resolution – nothing to go against the conservative grain of how Apple typically delivers iPhone upgrades every other year. That said, it’s not this phone’s fault that the iPhone 5 wasn’t the full-digit upgrade everyone was hoping for.
As usual with Apple – we need to give it that – a certain set of users just can’t wait to get the next big thing. Others, though, won’t just get rid of the iPhone 5 unless the newcomer is convincing enough. An iPhone may fail to meet the (usually over-inflated) expectations but it has never been a product to be displeased with.
The new OS version may be a decider as well, if more people share our experience and feel the slowdown on an iPhone 5 se running iOS 7, but the rest of the new stuff may as well be just enough to tip the scales in favor of the iPhone 5s.
The iPhone 5s
The first thing that makes a tangible difference is Touch ID, with a fingerprint scanner having made the iconic Home button its residence. The camera has a bigger sensor and dual LED flash, and gladly takes advantage of what’s probably the most notable improvement – the 64-bit A7 chip. The iOS enters its 64-bit stage in its seventh iteration, well ahead of the competition. What this means is better memory management and more complex tasks and apps ahead. This could as well be the first step to bringing the iOS closer to Apple’s dedicated desktop OS X – an early message that both platforms are due for a rendezvous eventually.
- Quad-band GSM and quad-band or penta-band 3G support with 21 Mbps HSDPA, 42 Mbps DC-HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA
- LTE support on all models and CDMA support when sold by CDMA carriers
- 4″ 16M-color LED-backlit IPS TFT capacitive touchscreen of 640 x 1136px resolution, 326 ppi
- Corning Gorilla Glass, fingerprint-resistant coating
- 1.3 GHz dual-core ARMv8 64-bit CPU, PowerVR G6430 GPU, 1GB of RAM, Apple A7 SoC
- iOS 7 and iCloud integration
- 8 MP autofocus camera, 1/3” sensor size, 1.5Âµm pixel size, True Tone dual-LED flash, touch focus, digital image stabilization
- 1080p video recording at 30fps, [email protected] slow motion videos
- 1.2MP secondary front-facing camera, 720p video recording
- Touch ID fingerprint scanner embedded into home button
- Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot
- GPS with A-GPS connectivity, GLONASS support; digital compass
- 16/32/64GB storage options
- Accelerometer, proximity sensor and a three-axis gyro sensor
- Active noise cancellation with a dedicated secondary microphone, dedicated third microphone for Siri
- Standard 3.5 mm audio jack, stereo Bluetooth v4.0
- Apple Maps with free voice-guided navigation in 50-odd countries
- iTunes Radio
- AirDrop file transfer
- Voice recognition, Siri virtual assistant
- Supports HD Voice (needs carrier support too)
- FaceTime video calls over Wi-Fi and cellular
- Impressively slim and light
- Screen feels small by 2013 standards
- Very expensive without carrier subsidies
- TouchID is greatly underused
- No USB Mass Storage mode, iTunes required for data transfer
- No FM radio
- No expandable storage, sealed-in battery
- No NFC connectivity
- [email protected] video recording is low by current flagship status
- Mono audio recording in videos
The iPhone 5s pushes the major re-design another year back – but this is something we can live with. After all, the styling of the iPhone is still relevant – to say the least. Digging a little deeper reveals that Apple has taken good care of bringing many major facets of performance to a new level on its latest flagship. The processor, the camera, Touch ID, video recording and still imagery, low light performance, and naturally, the look and feel of iOS 7.
However many things are still annoying about the iPhone – many, if not all, repeating themselves years on end. We like the premium compact and lightweight body of the iPhone but perhaps Apple is running out of excuses in terms of screen size and resolution.
And that’s what makes the next point even more agonizing – the price. Apple tax or not, the iPhone 5s is more expensive than any of the competition’s flagships, and by a good margin too. The bottom line is Apple is charging more and delivering less: a smaller screen, lower resolution, less storage. Oh well. Who can blame them if they can get away with it? Scratch that – make an art of it.
Anyway, an iPhone has always been more than the sum of its specs. But we’re going to do the math anyway. Starting with the hardware, which may look similar but not without some noteworthy changes. Let’s go.