iPhone 12 mini vs iPhone SE (2nd generation) – Which Tiny iPhone Is Best?

by | 14/10/2020 5:30 pm
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For years some Apple fans have complained that the iPhone was getting too big. These people held the older, smaller iPhones in high regard and many longed for the day of the iPhone 5, with its 4in screen. Apple never brought back the iPhone 5, but earlier this year it introduced the 2nd generation iPhone SE–the smallest iPhone Apple makes.

Yet that all changed this month when Apple introduced the iPhone 12 mini. Despite having a bigger display, the mini is smaller in size than the SE. But how else do the two compare? Let’s take a look.

iPhone 12 mini vs iPhone SE (2nd generation) Quick Comparison

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Design

  • iPhone 12 mini – The iPhone 12 mini has a glass and aluminum body with flat corners. It comes in blue, green, red, white, or black. It features Apple’s Face ID. Its physical footprint is smaller than the SE.
  • iPhone SE – The iPhone SE also has a glass and aluminum body, but it sports rounded corners. It also has Touch ID instead of facial recognition. It comes in red, black, or white.

Winner? iPhone 12 mini – If the design and a small size is what you want in an iPhone, the iPhone 12 mini wins by a mile. It’s the smallest iPhone Apple sells.

MORE: Which iPhones Have OLED Screens? A Quick Guide…

Displays

  • iPhone 12 mini – The iPhone 12 mini features an OLED Super Retina SDR display that is 5.4in and has a 2340 x 1080-pixel resolution.
  • iPhone SE – The iPhone SE features a Retina HD LCD display that is 4.7in and has a 1334 x 750-pixel resolution.

Winner? iPhone 12 mini – No contest here either. The edge-to-edge OLED display on the iPhone 12 mini is far superior than the iPhone SE. It’s not even a contest.

CPU/Processor

  • iPhone 12 mini – the iPhone 12 mini features the A14 Bionic chipset. This A14 is a 5nm chip.
  • iPhone SE – the iPhone SE features the A13 chipset. This A13 is a 7nm chip.

Winner? iPhone 12 mini – The A14 will get you up to 25% more CPU processing power.

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Camera

  • iPhone 12 mini – The iPhone 12 mini features a 12MP selfie camera. On the rear, you get a dual-lens camera setup with a 12MP wide and 12MP telephoto lens and 2x optical zoom.
  • iPhone SE – The iPhone SE features a 7MP front-facing camera. On the rear, you get a single-lens 12MP camera complete with a wide-angle lens.

Winner? iPhone 12 mini – Not only does it offer a dual-lens setup, but it also offers optical zoom. The front selfie camera is also superior.

Storage Options

  • iPhone 12 mini – 64GB, 128GB, or 256GB
  • iPhone SE – 64GB, 128GB, or 256GB

MORE: iPhone 12 Mini Battery Size: How Big Is It?

Battery Life

  • iPhone 12 mini – The iPhone 12 mini battery will get you about 15 hours of battery life with mixed usage. It also features wireless charging with MagSafe technology.
  • iPhone SE – The iPhone SE’s battery will get you about 13 hours of battery life with mixed usage. It features standard wireless charging.

Winner? iPhone 12 mini – You get an extra two hours of battery life plus you get the MagSafe locking charging feature.

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Price

  • iPhone 12 mini – The 5.4in iPhone 12 mini costs $699 (64GB) and $749 (128GB) and $849 (256GB).
  • iPhone SE – The 4.7in iPhone SE costs $399 (64GB) and $449 (128GB) and $549 (256GB).

Verdict?

There’s no two ways to cut it. The iPhone 12 mini is the best option for iPhone fans who want the smallest iPhone possible. Despite the iPhone 12 mini having the larger 5.4in display, it’s physically smaller than the iPhone SE with the smaller 4.7in display.

But it doesn’t stop there. The iPhone 12 mini also beats the iPhone SE because it has an OLED display, an edge-to-edge display, Face ID, the superior A14 chipset, a dual-lens camera system, MagSafe charging, and 5G support.

Really, the ONLY reason you would want to go with the iPhone SE over the iPhone 12 mini is the cost. At $399 the iPhone SE is Apple’s cheapest iPhone–and for what it can do, that’s a bargain price. However, if you want the smallest iPhone, the iPhone 12 mini is your device.

MORE: iPhone 12 Pro vs iPhone 12 – Same Size, But What’s Different?

iPhone 12 mini vs iPhone SE (2nd generation): Specs

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Here are the specs for the iPhone 12 mini:

  • Display: 5.4in OLED Super Retina SDR display with a 2340 x 1080-pixel resolution
  • Dimensions: 131.5 mm x 64.2 mm x 7.4 mm
  • Weight: 135 grams
  • Storage: 64, 128, or 256GB
  • Processors: A14 Bionic chip
  • Front camera: 12MP FaceTime HD camera
  • Rear camera: 12 MP Ultra Wide and 12MP Wide. 2x optical zoom out.
  • Battery: Up to 15 hours (video playback)
  • Other: 5G, Face ID, NFC, MagSafe wireless charging, IP68 waterproof (6m)

And here are the specs for the iPhone SE (2nd generation):

  • Display: 4.7in LCD Retina HD display with a 1334 x 750-pixel resolution at 326ppi
  • Dimensions: 138.4mm x 67.3mm x 7.3mm
  • Weight: 148 grams
  • Storage: 64, 128, or 256GB
  • Processors: A13 Bionic chip with third-generation Neural Engine
  • Front camera: 7MP FaceTime HD camera with 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps, Portrait Mode
  • Rear camera: Single 12MP Wide camera.
  • Battery: Up to 13 hours (video playback)
  • Other: 4G, Touch ID, NFC, wireless charging, IP67 waterproof (1m)

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