New iPhone SE teardown reveals design nearly identical to iPhone 8

Posted:
in iPhone edited April 2020
A teardown video of Apple's new iPhone SE posted to YouTube on Thursday underscores consensus that the handset is an updated and rebadged iPhone 8, with the new phone sporting a nearly identical internal design and, in many cases, interchangeable parts.




Conducted by Chinese mobile phone repair and technical training specialist Ao Technology, the teardown offers a first look at iPhone SE's internals, as well as a direct comparison with the iPhone 8 model it replaces.

A video of the disassembly and analysis of internal components was published on Weibo and cross-posted to Ao's YouTube channel, the latter of which includes English translations.

As anticipated, the SE's internal layout is nearly identical to that of its iPhone 8 predecessor. Significant changes were announced in Apple's press release last week, including an upgraded A13 Bionic processor with 3GB of RAM, updated connectivity stack with 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0, and the company's "best-ever single-camera system."





Beyond "A13" branding on the system-on-chip, which is hidden by protective shielding, the upgrades are not readily apparent.

In testing parts compatibility, Ao was able to successfully transfer the SE's display to an iPhone 8, though it is not clear whether the unit's Touch ID module functions as normal.

Further, an iPhone 8 logic board can be installed in the new SE, but its utility is limited. While basic system features like sound, haptics and touch controls work, the SE's rear-facing camera is incompatible with the old board carrying Apple's A11 Bionic system-on-chip. This is to be expected considering the advanced photo features built into the new affordable handset are powered by the A13. The SE also transitions to an iPhone 11-style battery connector despite maintaining the same 1,821 mAh cell as iPhone 8.

Today's brief teardown arrives one day before Apple's iPhone SE is scheduled to reach customer hands on Friday.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    badmonkbadmonk Posts: 997member
    This is good for potential buyers...solid engineering legacy.

    I love FaceID but in the new masked world we live in, i am thinking of buying this as a second phone to allow sign in with TouchID.  For once, I see the rationale of having both options on a single phone.
    baconstangmuthuk_vanalingamBart Ydewme
  • Reply 2 of 22
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 2,566member
    The iPhone 8E. 
    Beats
  • Reply 3 of 22
    And THAT is why it's $399.
    Bart Ydewme
  • Reply 4 of 22
    I was thinking iPhone 8SE
    Bart Y
  • Reply 5 of 22
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,550member

    iPhone SE


    "No it isn't an iPhone 9"
    baconstangBart Ypscooter63
  • Reply 6 of 22
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,561member
    Apple could have increased screen on top side reducing it's top thick bezel, giving new identity. To me it's iPhone 8S.
    Beatsspock1234gatorguy
  • Reply 7 of 22
    bikertwinbikertwin Posts: 565member
    wood1208 said:
    To me it's iPhone 8S.
    Except it’s cheaper than the iPhone 8 was, has more memory, and uses a CPU three generations newer. 
    tenchi211spock1234bageljoeyBart Ydewmepscooter63StrangeDays
  • Reply 8 of 22
    MisterKitMisterKit Posts: 440member
    I don’t think anyone is surprised by this. The original SE did the same thing. It takes nothing away from the solid value of the new SE. No need to reinvent the wheel.
    bageljoeypascal007Bart Ydewmepscooter63StrangeDays
  • Reply 9 of 22
    wood1208 said:
    Apple could have increased screen on top side reducing it's top thick bezel, giving new identity. To me it's iPhone 8S.

    But that would add to the costs and the phone wouldn't be as cheap.

    The idea behind the SE is that Apple uses the remaining parts of older phones and consumers can buy a new iPhone for a low price. It's a win-win for both.

    I think that a couple of years from now, when the iPhone X style has matured, the next SE would be based off it.

    Bart Y
  • Reply 10 of 22
    tommy65tommy65 Posts: 56member
    Indeed solid legacy with a Twist. The SE shares the same battery as the 8 but with an updated connector as seen in the iPhone 11 so replacement is going to be easier for the service genius. Less parts on the shelves. That’s a good thing for buyers if forever reason service/ replacement of parts is needed.
    MisterKitBart Y
  • Reply 11 of 22
    macguimacgui Posts: 2,052member
    wood1208 said:
    Apple could have increased screen on top side reducing it's top thick bezel, giving new identity. To me it's iPhone 8S.
    Apple could have done a lot of things to this phone. Just not for $400. Not one. The whole idea behind making the SE from an existing phone (deja vu all over again) was to keep the cost down

    Why is it so tough for people to grasp that very simple concept; it's not rocket science.

    Apple still makes a good profit but a customer doesn't have to shell out upwards to $1000 for a good phone.

    It's still bigger than I like but squeezing the current SE2's electronics in a 5s/SE form factor, and increasing the size of the screen would price the phone way outta my reach.
    EsquireCatschiaBart Ydewmepscooter63
  • Reply 12 of 22
    EsquireCatsEsquireCats Posts: 1,195member
    badmonk said:
    This is good for potential buyers...solid engineering legacy.

    I love FaceID but in the new masked world we live in, i am thinking of buying this as a second phone to allow sign in with TouchID.  For once, I see the rationale of having both options on a single phone.
    While glove wearing also presents a similar issue (especially as winter comes to most parts of the planet annually) - I'm finding Siri more useful since it *usually* requires neither my hands, nor my face.
    Bart Ypscooter63jcs2305
  • Reply 13 of 22
    macapfelmacapfel Posts: 566member
    It is a very good phone. If you want more than 64 GB RAM, you either need the big iPhone 11 or pay more than twice as much to get the iPhone 11 Pro. So that alone is great.
  • Reply 14 of 22
    Bart YBart Y Posts: 36unconfirmed, member
    macapfel said:
    It is a very good phone. If you want more than 64 GB RAM, you either need the big iPhone 11 or pay more than twice as much to get the iPhone 11 Pro. So that alone is great.
    But you can get an iPhone SE 128GB for $449 or the iPhone SE 256Gb for $549.  No big deal.


    dewme
  • Reply 15 of 22
    macapfelmacapfel Posts: 566member
    Bart Y said:
    macapfel said:
    It is a very good phone. If you want more than 64 GB RAM, you either need the big iPhone 11 or pay more than twice as much to get the iPhone 11 Pro. So that alone is great.
    But you can get an iPhone SE 128GB for $449 or the iPhone SE 256Gb for $549.  No big deal.


    Right, that's what I meant: with the SE, you have a cheap option for >64 GB.
  • Reply 16 of 22
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,496member
    macapfel said:
    It is a very good phone. If you want more than 64 GB RAM, you either need the big iPhone 11 or pay more than twice as much to get the iPhone 11 Pro. So that alone is great.
    The SE (or any iPhone) does not have 64gb of RAM.   No phone does.  Very few Macs do.   It has 74gb of flash storage 
  • Reply 17 of 22
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,496member
    macapfel said:
    It is a very good phone. If you want more than 64 GB RAM, you either need the big iPhone 11 or pay more than twice as much to get the iPhone 11 Pro. So that alone is great.
    The SE (or any iPhone) does not have 64gb of RAM.   No phone does.  Very few Macs do.   It has 64gb of flash storage 
  • Reply 18 of 22
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 1,758member
    chrispoe said:
    I was thinking iPhone 8SE
    And I guess the iPhone SEiiX was out of the question.
    LOL
  • Reply 19 of 22
    jcs2305jcs2305 Posts: 1,219member
    wood1208 said:
    Apple could have increased screen on top side reducing it's top thick bezel, giving new identity. To me it's iPhone 8S.

    It's $399.00... an new screen design would surely have driven the price up. It's a budget phone that is easy to produce with some very nice internals and good camera, just like the original SE.

    So was the original SE the 5SS to you?  
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 20 of 22
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,654member
    wood1208 said:
    Apple could have increased screen on top side reducing it's top thick bezel, giving new identity. To me it's iPhone 8S.
    You misunderstand the purpose of the device. It’s less expensive because it’s an older shell and design.  
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