iPhone SE vs Galaxy S10e vs Huawei Nova 5T – The showdown

Consumers looking for a premium smartphone without a premium price tag will find several options available from the world’s top three smartphone brands.

Apple recently launched its new iPhone SE, which takes the body of an iPhone 8 and combines it with powerful components from the latest flagship iPhones.

This follows Samsung’s Galaxy S10e, which offers a range of high-end features at a price that outshines its bigger S10 and newer S20 counterparts, and Huawei’s Nova 5T, a mid-range entry with high-end specifications and sleek design.

We compared these three smartphones to see which offers the best features.


The iPhone SE 2020 is the smallest smartphone of the three, although the Galaxy S10e is only slightly larger.

It features the same aluminium-and-glass body as the iPhone 8 and is available in white, black and red.

The Samsung S10e sports glass on the front and back, with a metal side frame. It comes in white, green, blue, and a bright canary yellow.

The Huawei Nova 5T is the thickest and tallest option of the three and also comes in an aluminium-and-glass body, with colour options of blue, purple or black.


When it comes to display size and resolution, the Nova 5T and Galaxy S10e are ahead of the iPhone SE.

The Nova 5T has the largest display, measuring 6.26 inches with a 1,080 x 2,340 resolution and 412 pixels-per-inch (ppi).

The S10e, however, boasts a more advanced AMOLED display, which delivers better colours and contrast.

Its resolution is slightly lower than the Nova 5T’s at 1,080 x 2,280, but its smaller 5.8-inch size means this translates into 438 ppi.

The iPhone SE features a 4.7-inch LCD display with a 750 x 1,334 resolution and 326 ppi.

The power game

When it comes to power, however, the tables are turned.

Possibly the biggest selling point of the iPhone SE is its performance, as it features the same processor that comes in the iPhone 11 series – the A13 Bionic.

Benchmarks have shown this chip outperforms rival offerings from Qualcomm, Samsung, and Huawei.

The South African version of the Galaxy S10e features Samsung’s Exynos 9820, which performed well in smartphone processor benchmarks.

Huawei has powered the Nova 5T with the same processor as the one in its 2019 flagship P30.

The Kirin 980 slots in just beneath the Exynos 9820 in terms of performance benchmarks.

Single vs double vs quad camera

When it comes to cameras, the iPhone SE sports a single 12MP wide camera on the rear and a 7MP sensor on the front.

The S10e also has a 12MP sensor but adds a 16MP ultrawide lens on the back for shots with a 123-degree field-of-view. On the front, it sports a 10MP selfie camera.

The Nova 5T packs a quad-camera combination of 48MP primary, 16MP wide, 2MP macro, and 2MP bokeh lenses.

Digital Camera World has said this makes for a powerful mobile shooter at an affordable price, with excellent low-light photography and AI capabilities.

Battery and charging

Tests by TechRadar revealed that the 3,750mAh battery in the Huawei Nova 5T will typically provide users with a full day of heavy use, while still having around 20% battery remaining at the end of the day.

The battery supports 22.5W fast wired charging which can fill it up to 50% in 30 minutes.

Apple does not share the capacity of its smartphone batteries, but claimed that the iPhone SE battery will last for around 13 hours.

The S10e’s battery capacity sits between the iPhone SE and Nova 5T. It has a 3,100mAh pack which can be charged with 15W wired or 15W wireless charging.

Additionally, the S10e supports reverse wireless charging, which can be used to provide power to compatible devices.


While pricing and availability for the iPhone SE in South Africa is not available yet, it is currently priced at $399 for the 64GB version in the US.

The Samsung S10e and Huawei Nova 5T are available from various retailers and online stores in South Africa.

On Takealot, the S10e is available from R10,699, while the Nova 5T starts at R8,599.

iPhone SE 2020

iPhone SE
Display 4.7-inch 1,334 x 750 LCD
OS iOS 13
Processor A13 Bionic
RAM *Not detailed
Storage 64GB/128GB/256GB
Main Camera 12MP
Front Camera 7MP
Connectivity Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, Lightning Port
Cellular LTE
Biometrics TouchID
Battery *Lasts the same time as an iPhone 8
Dimensions 138.4 x 67.3 x 7.3 mm (148g)

Samsung Galaxy S10e

Samsung S10e front and back

Samsung Galaxy S1oe
Display 5.8-inch 1,080 x 2,280 OLED
OS Android 10
Processor Exynos 9820
Storage 128GB / 256GB, microSD up to 1TB
Main Camera 12MP + 16MP
Front Camera 10MP
Connectivity Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C
Cellular LTE
Biometrics Fingerprint reader, Face unlock
Battery 3,100mAh
Dimensions 142.2 x 69.9 x 7.9 mm (150g)

Huawei Nova 5T

Nova 5T

Huawei Nova 5T
Display 6.26-inch 1,080 x 2,340 IPS LCD
OS Android 9
Processor Kirin 980
Storage 128GB
Main Camera 48MP + 16MP + 2MP + 2MP
Front Camera 32MP
Connectivity Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C
Cellular LTE
Biometrics Fingerprint reader, Face unlock
Battery 3,750mAh
Dimensions 154.3 x 74 x 7.8 mm (174g)

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iPhone SE vs Galaxy S10e vs Huawei Nova 5T – The showdown