Moto G Power vs. iPhone SE (2020): Which should you buy?

Iphone Se 2020 Hero
Iphone Se 2020 Hero (Image credit: iMore)

The Moto G Power and iPhone SE are two very different phones for two different groups of people. Motorola crafted the G Power to be one of the best bang-for-your-buck deals out there, and it absolutely succeeds. Despite the dirt-cheap price, the Moto G Power manages to offer a quality display, reliable performance, good cameras, and legendary battery life. However, if you want features like wireless charging, NFC, or the blazing-fast speed of the A13 Bionic processor, the iPhone SE delivers all of that while still maintaining a reasonable price.

Moto G Power vs iPhone SE (2020): Moto G offers great value

Moto G Power 2020 Hands On

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

There's a pretty large price difference between the Moto G Power and iPhone SE, and unless you really need iOS or the raw power of the A13 Bionic chipset, the Moto G Power delivers a perfectly enjoyable Android experience while saving you serious cash.

Right off the bat, the best thing about the Moto G Power is its battery life. Thanks to a 5,000 mAh battery packed inside the phone, you can expect up to three days of use on a single charge. You might need to charge the G Power after two days if you're throwing a lot at it, but for general use, it's quite easy to hit the three-day marker.

Most phones, including the iPhone SE, need to be placed on the charger every single night. Even if that's something you've grown used to and don't necessarily mind, going to a phone that can last an entire weekend without ever needing to be plugged in is quite magical.

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Header Cell - Column 0 Moto G PoweriPhone SE (2020)
Operating SystemAndroid 10iOS 13.3
2300 x 1080
1334 v 750
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 665Apple A13 Bionic
Expandable StorageUp to 512GB
Rear Camera 116MP primary camera
12MP primary camera
Rear Camera 22MP Macro Vision camera
Rear Camera 38MP ultra-wide camera
Front Camera16MP
Battery5,000 mAh1,821 mAh
Charging15W wired charging18W wired charging
Qi wireless charging
AudioDual stereo speakers
3.5mm headphone jack
Mono speaker
Lightning port
Water ResistanceWater-repellent nano coatingIP67
Dimensions159.85 x 75.84 x 9.63mm138.4 x 67.3 x 7.3mm
Carrier CompatibilityAT&T

Other aspects of the Moto G Power aren't as impressive, but they hold their own just fine. The Snapdragon 665 chipset allows for perfectly adequate performance, the 6.4-inch Full HD display is nice and sharp with slim bezels surrounding it, and the trio of rear cameras are a lot of fun to use. The 16MP primary camera takes pretty good shots if you're in an area with ample lighting, with the Macro Vision and ultra-wide cameras allowing for different photo possibilities you just don't get on the iPhone SE.

Moto G Power

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

Combine all of that with 64GB of expandable storage, a water-repellent nano-coating, and a 3.5mm headphone jack, and the Moto G Power goes far and beyond what its price tag suggests.

As for the negatives, there are only two major ones. The Moto G Power doesn't have NFC, meaning you can't use it for contactless Google Pay payments. I use Google Pay all the time, so using something like the G Power where it doesn't work is awfully irritating.

There's also the matter of software updates. Motorola only promises one major OS upgrade for the G Power, meaning it likely won't ever see an update beyond Android 11. With other companies like Nokia offering two years of major updates and three years of security patches for phones with similar or lower price tags, that's inexcusable.

Moto G Power vs iPhone SE (2020): The cheapest way to get an iPhone

If the Moto G Power is such a great smartphone, why should you go out and spend more money on the iPhone SE, especially when it has those huge bezels and outdated design? Looks and price aside, there are a few big areas where the iPhone SE is the clear winner.

The most obvious has to do with performance. The iPhone SE is the best cheap iPhone and is powered by Apple's A13 Bionic processor, which is the exact same one you'll find in the $1,000 iPhone 11 Pro. In other words, the SE has the most powerful mobile chipset on the market. If you're someone that plays a lot of Fortnite on your phone or likes to dabble with AR apps, the extra horsepower of the SE is worth its higher price.

On top of that, there's another benefit of the iPhone SE having the A13 Bionic — software updates. Since it's so darn powerful and futureproof, we can look forward to at least five years of consistent updates for the phone. That's leaps and bounds better than what you'll get with the Moto G Power, and if you plan on keeping your phone for a few years, this is a huge benefit of the iPhone.

What else about the iPhone SE stands out? Its single 12MP rear camera is one of the best you'll find in this price range, having Qi wireless charging and IP67 dust/water resistance is fantastic, there's an NFC chip for Apple Pay, and the compact size makes it a wonderful choice for folks that have grown tired of large, bulky handsets.

Moto G Power vs iPhone SE (2020): Two great phones for two groups of people

At the end of the day, we can easily recommend both the Moto G Power and iPhone SE — which one you should buy over the other just comes down to your personal wants/needs.

The Moto G Power is the better choice if you're trying to spend as little money as possible or want top-notch battery life, whereas the iPhone SE makes more sense if you need flagship-grade performance or that promise of reliable software updates.

You'll also need to consider your operating system preference, seeing as how the Moto G Power is an Android device while the iPhone SE runs iOS. If you're a long-time iPhone user, you'll be more comfortable with the iPhone SE. If Android has been your go-to OS, the Moto G Power is the more logical purchase.

Joe Maring

When Joe isn't acting as the News Editor for Android Central, he can be found helping out with articles here and there at iMore. He was last spotted at Starbucks surrounded by peppermint mochas. Have a tip? Send an email to!