Apple unveil budget friendly iPhone SE 3

9 March 2022, 11:50   By Dr Lucy Brown, Editor

New Apple iPhone SE 3 is the first affordable Apple device to have 5G capability and comes in three colour options.

The handset also has the same A15 Bionic chip that is used in the latest iPhone 13 range of phones.

Apple promise a longer battery life and behind the scenes camera enhancements to improve the quality of photos.

The Apple iPhone SE 3 will start from £419 and will be available to buy from 18 March 2022, with some pre-orders open before then.

apple logo on building
Credit: 360b/

Apple iPhone SE 3

Apple has brought 5G compatibility to the SE range for the first time with the iPhone SE 3 allowing users to connect to 5G networks where available.

It comes with the A15 Bionic chip that also powers the iPhone 13 Pro and other devices in the iPhone 13 series.

The SE 3 is the same dimensions as its predecessor, the iPhone SE 2020, and keeps the same single lens camera unit.

However, Apple say the A15 Bionic chip and other internal enhancements will improve the photography experience for users.

They also say the battery has been enhanced and the iPhone SE 3 is equipped with fast charging to reach 50% in 30 minutes.

The design of the SE 3 incorporates the physical Home button that has been stripped out of more expensive models. This allows Touch ID to be used, although Face ID is still not supported.


The Apple iPhone SE 3 will be available to buy from 18 March 2022.

Customers can choose from three colour options (Midnight, Starlight or (PRODUCT)RED and there are three storage options available: 64GB, 128GB and 256GB.

Pricing starts from £419 for the 64GB model, rising to £469 for the 128GB device and £569 for the 256GB version.

This makes it £260 cheaper than the smallest phone in the flagship series, the iPhone 13 Mini, although it's slightly more expensive than the iPhone SE 2020 was at launch.

The handset will be stocked by all major UK networks when it is released later this month.

Affordable handset

The new smaller device from Apple continues the trend started when they released the first SE handset back in 2016. This was followed in 2020 by the second iteration.

Although the iPhone SE 3 is small and continues to have bezels around the screen, it targets part of the market who either don't want or can't afford the more expensive flagship range.

Many users prefer the size of the iPhone SE 3 compared to the oversized handsets that have come to dominate the landscape in recent years. Although Apple have included a Mini version in their main line-up for the iPhone 12 and 13 ranges, that device is still slightly larger and comes with a bigger price tag.

There are definite limitations to the iPhone SE 3 such as the lack of Face ID and the single camera set-up, but this is still an iPhone beneath the surface and there are plenty of features that make it an attractive smartphone.

The fact that Apple has increased the battery capability and used their latest flagship chip is a sign that the SE 3 is a budget friendly alternative to the main range rather than simply a box-ticking exercise.

It's also the cheapest 5G iPhone on the market, allowing more customers to upgrade to 5G technology now while staying within the Apple ecosystem.


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