Apple's iPhone SE

By packing the big A 13 Chip into its small iPhone SE. Apple has made its budget smartphone a more compelling product at just the right time for a corona-virus a spooked world. Where most budget phones cut costs by using lower-end processors, the new iphone SE uses the same flagship chip that powers the iPhone 11 Pro Max, which launched last year.

That processing power means this newest iPhone, though lacking some iPhone 11 features, like Face ID and an ultra wide-angle camera, still gets new capabilities that require the A 13 chip. Those include the latest portrait mode effects for blurring backgrounds behind photo subjects, the six studio lighting effects Apple also offers, the newest  technology to handle scenes with bright and dark elements and 4 K video at 60 frames per second.

The A 13 processor outclasses what’s in all current Android phones, not just cheap models that budget-conscious buyers might be eyeing. The iPhone SE scores 1,328 on the geek bench test of single-task performance, matching the iPhone 11 and far surpassing the iPhone’s strongest competitor, the Samsung S 20 Ultra which has a score of 835.

A13 chip horsepower

The A 13 chip — its full name is A 13 Bionic — is the product of a gargantuan engineering effort. It’s got 8.5 billion transistors, the tiny on-off switches that do everything on the phone.