Sep 07, 2020 News
The iPhone SE and the Pixel 4a are the latest least expensive offering from both Apple and Google respectively. Both of these devices have gotten immense media coverage, and are well received by the smartphone world. We shall inspect multiple aspects of both budget phones and determine which one is better.
The iPhone SE has an elegant glossy glass body with an aluminum frame around the outside edge which gives it a premium feel. The Pixel 4a has a matte polycarbonate body, and has a more modern design which makes it look extremely attractive. The iPhone SE has a touch ID sensor in the front and while the Pixel 4a’s rear mounted sensor isn’t difficult to reach or use, we still prefer the iPhone SE's in front mounted sensor. In addition, the iPhone SE is the only one of the two which has a water-resistant design with and IP rating of IP68. Since the iPhone is also available in three colors namely red while and black over the Pixel’s single black version, we’ll give this round to the iPhone SE.
The iPhone SE features a 4.7-inch LCD panel, which is smaller than most phones, with 1334x750 resolution and 326 pixels per inch. The Pixel 4a has a larger and sharper display, featuring a 5.8-inch OLED panel with 1080x2340 and has 443 ppi that supports HDR which has an Always-on display. The Pixel 4a’s display is brighter than that of the iPhone SE’s, and the OLED display is always going to be an advantage over an LCD panel, as colors look sharper and deliver more punch to the eyes. Pixel takes this one.
The Pixel runs of Android 10 and features the Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G which is a reliable mid-range chip. The iPhone runs on the iOS 13 and packs a fast A13 Bionic processor, the same one which can be found in the iPhone 11.
The iPhone SE has 3GB RAM and comes in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB of non-expandable storage. While 3GB RAM doesn’t seem a lot, its more than enough and an iPhone seems to handle that without a problem. The Pixel 4a features 6GB RAM and 128GB storage that isn’t upgradable. It definitely has more RAM than the former, especially for multitasking purposes but the CPU is slower than that of the iPhone SE’s. The iPhone does admittingly heat up significantly while doing heavy processing but it performs better than the Pixel 4a and has fewer hiccups.
The iPhone SE has a 7MP front camera and a single 12MP rear camera with optical image stabilization. This is the same camera that can be found on the iPhone 8. The Pixel 4a has a single 12.2 MP rear camera with optical and electronic image stabilization and an 8MP front camera. The rear camera is the same camera Google has been using since the Pixel 2. For low budget phones, both phones are capable and perform well.
Truthfully, for the most part, the results in sunlight are hard to tell apart - but the iPhone's colors are a bit more saturated in bright sunlight and creates a bit more contrast whilst the Pixel tends to even out exposure - this leads to the iPhone's photos to look more appealing to the eye. Moreover, the A13 bionic in the iPhone SE allows for faster shots to be taken, compared to the time the Pixel takes to process those images. In low light, the Pixel 4a performs impeccably well as it always has. The SE doesn’t have a night mode on the default camera and so low light shots look clearer and brighter on the Pixel 4a. Both phones shoot at 4K and it was found that the iPhone’s results look better as the image is overall sharper and delivers more natural colors.
Both phones have a pretty average battery life. The Pixel 4a comes with a 3140-mAp battery which lasts around 8 hours 55 minutes. The iPhone SE features an 1821-mAh battery which lasts for about 9 hours 18 minutes. life, The Pixel 4a comes 18W fast charger and while the iPhone SE’s battery lasts slightly longer, it comes with a 5W charger. The 18W charger costs extra but then again, the iPhone SE also offers wireless charging.
Since both phones are budget phones, it really comes down to which phone offers more value for money. The Google Pixel 4a starts at 349 compared to the $399 for the iPhone SE. For the price point, the Google Pixel 4a offers more storage than the 64GB iPhone SE in which you have to pay extra to upgrade to 128GB or 256GB. In addition, the Pixel 4a includes a fast charger while for the iPhone SE, yet again, you will have to pay extra as it is separately sold.
According to our score board, the Pixel is in the lead with more wins. However, it's a really tough competition between the phones, as you truly are getting your money’s worth regardless. Ultimately it comes down to what you prefer in a phone. If you are someone who prefers using iPhones, need excellent performance and camera, then the iPhone SE would be the way to go. But if you value other features such as additional storage, an included fast charger, and an adequately sized display, then the Pixel would be the better option.