Google unveiled the Pixel 6a at I/O 2022, while Apple launched the iPhone SE (2022) earlier this year, so how do the two mid-range phones compare? Google announced a bunch of new products at its developer conference, including the Pixel 6a and Pixel Buds Pro. The company also teased some of its other upcoming hardware, including the Pixel 7 and Pixel Watch.

Apple announced the iPhone SE 3 in March as an upgrade over the second-generation iPhone SE that was launched back in 2020. It comes with a number of interesting features and is currently the most affordable way to gain entry into Apple‘s mobile ecosystem. So now that Google’s new affordable Pixel phone is official, let’s check out how the two devices compare with one another.


Related: Google I/O 2022 Recap: Pixel 6a, Pixel Watch, Pixel 7, And Much More

The biggest and most obvious difference between the Pixel 6a and the iPhone SE 3 is their design. While the former comes with large screen and a punch-hole camera that give it a modern appearance, the iPhone SE 3 looks like a blast from the past, thanks to its puny 4.7-inch display and chunky bezels on all sides. The LCD panel on the iPhone SE 3 lacks the vibrancy of an AMOLED screen. In comparison, the Pixel 6a ships with a comparatively larger 6.1-inch OLED panel that should offer more punchy colors and a better multimedia experience. Unfortunately, both devices miss out on a high refresh rate display and are stuck at 60Hz.

Pixel 6a Vs. iPhone SE 3: Similarities And Differences

Cameras are another area where the two phones differ. While the iPhone SE 3 has a single 12-megapixel sensor at the back, the Pixel 6a comes with dual rear cameras that include a 12-megapixel primary and a 12-megapixel secondary (ultra-wide) shooter. The camera software also includes Pixel’s Magic Eraser for removing unwanted objects in photos and Real Tone for more accurately balanced skin tones. The Pixel 6a has the edge in the battery department as well, thanks to a 4,800mAh unit that Google claims will last “a really, really long time.” As for the iPhone SE 3, Apple hasn’t announced its official battery capacity, but a teardown revealed that it has a tiny 2,018mAh cell.

In terms of performance, both the Pixel 6a and iPhone SE 3 ship with the latest in-house processors from their respective makers. While the former is powered by the same Google Tensor chip found in the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, the latter comes with the A15 Bionic that powers the iPhone 13 lineup. In the real world, that means neither phone should have any trouble running the most graphics-intensive games or resource-heavy productivity apps. However, in synthetic benchmarks, the iPhone SE 3’s A15 Bionic crushes the Tensor in the Pixel 6. The Apple chipset also wins in Geekbench, 3DMark Wild Life, and other benchmarks, although the pure Android software and various optimizations carried out by Google ensure that the Tensor still performs admirably.

Coming to the pricing, the iPhone SE 3 costs $429, while the Pixel 6a has been priced at $449. While the former is currently available for purchase from retail outlets and online stores, the Pixel 6a will be available to pre-order on July 21 before going on sale from July 28. The two phones trade blows in most aspects, although the Google device has a clear edge over the iPhone in terms of design. If the cameras on the Pixel 6a are as good as the ones on the Pixel 6, it should also be better at photography – especially night photography. However, when it comes to choosing one device over the other, the deciding factor will be the operating system. The iPhone SE (2022) is meant for people who are already part of the Apple ecosystem or want in without breaking the bank. For everyone else, the Pixel 6a is clearly the better option in 2022.