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Apple iPhone SE 2020 or iPhone XR: Which one should you buy?

The iPhone SE 2020 offers the same battery as the one present in the iPhone 8 or as Apple says the iPhone 7.

The iPhone SE 2020 costs Rs 42,500 in India.
The iPhone SE 2020 costs Rs 42,500 in India. (Apple)

Years of reports and scores of leaks later, Apple finally unveiled the iPhone SE 2020. As the name suggests, the iPhone SE 2020 is the successor to the iPhone SE that was launched back in 2016 and it replaces the iPhone XR as the default budget iPhone.

At a price tag of 42,500, the newly launched iPhone SE 2020 is not exactly a budget buy, especially when compared to the iPhone XR, which has been a fan favourite for long now. The two-year-old iPhone is also just 10,000 pricier than the former. This brings us to an obvious question: the iPhone SE 2020 or the iPhone XR -- which one should you pick?

Here's what we think:

Design: Old soul vs new

The newly launched iPhone SE 2020 is a close sibling of the iPhone 8 in terms of the design. It has the same 4.7-inch LCD display with a Touch ID-enabled home screen button that's present in the iPhone 8. It also has thick bezels on bottom and on the top that hides the phone's FaceTime camera and the earpiece. One and probably the only difference between the iPhone SE 2020 and the iPhone SE is the absence of the 3.5mm jack -- a standard feature in all iPhones.

The iPhone XR, on the other hand, comes with a bigger 6.1-inch LCD display and a notch on top.

A bigger display, however, is not the only difference between the iPhone SE 2020 and the iPhone XR. While the former comes with a resolution of 1334x750 pixels, latter offers a resolution of 1792x828 pixels. Simply, said, the iPhone XR has a better display than the iPhone SE 2020.

Tech specs: Some upgrades there

Coming to the core specifications, the newly launched iPhone SE 2020 has its hits and misses. The newly launched budget iPhone gets A13 Bionic chipset in its core that is coupled with the third generation neural engine. This is the same processor that powers the iPhone 11. The iPhone XR, on the other hand, is powered by the A12 Bionic chipset -- admittedly two years old now -- that is coupled with the second generation neural engine.

Both the devices come with IP67 protection and run on iOS 13 and while the iPhone SE 2020 gets Touch ID, which it borrows from the iPhone 8, the iPhone XR comes with Face ID.

Another point of difference between the two 'budget' iPhones is the battery. When Apple launched the iPhone XR two years back, it was praised for its battery life. The iPhone 11 built on it and it offered a slightly longer run time than the iPhone XR. The iPhone SE 2020 offers the same battery as the one present in the iPhone 8 or as Apple says the iPhone 7. Simply said, if battery was one of the key areas you were looking at, the iPhone XR is clearly a better pick.

The iPhone XR starts at <span class=₹52,500 in India. ">
The iPhone XR starts at 52,500 in India. (REUTERS)

Camera: It's the same

Both the phones, that is, the iPhone XR and the iPhone SE 2020 come with the same rear camera. The two phones sport a 12-megapixel wide angle lens at the back with 5x digital zoom. The front of the two phones are also the same. This means that you get a 7-megapixel front camera with Retina flash.

Price: That's tricky

The iPhone SE 2020 is available in India in three memory variants, that is, a 64GB variant that is available for 42,500; a 128GB variant that is available for 47,800, and a 256GB variant that is priced at 58,300.

The iPhone XR, on the other hand, is available in two memory variants, that is, a 64GB variant that costs 52,500 and a 128GB variant that is priced at 57,800.

So, which one should you pick?

Now the million dollar question: which one of the two smartphones should you pick? Well, the choice is not very simple. At 42,500, the iPhone SE 2020 is not exactly the budget iPhone that we had hoped for. Sure, it has a better processor compared to the iPhone XR. However, a large screen coupled with a single rear camera and iPhone 8-like battery battery capacity, don't exactly make it the default budget pick.

The iPhone XR, despite being a bit costlier (and have a slightly older processor) offers a better battery life and more screen space. Plus, it has FaceID!

It all boils down to a simple fact: How much can you spend. If you are on a strict budget or if you just want to replace your old iPhone SE with a new one, the iPhone SE 2020 is your go to phone. If not, the iPhone XR is definitely worth your time.

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