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OnePlus Nord vs Pixel 4a vs iPhone SE(2020) – Who is the real budget champ?

The last few months have dramatically impacted the smartphone industry, with the advent of 3 new smartphones that all cost under $400.

I am ofcourse talking about the OnePlus Nord, Pixel 4a and the iPhone SE. The announcement of all three of these have completely changed the couse of the smartphone industry and made the consumers realise that you do not have to pay a big sum in order to get a totally functional phone with very few compromises that will last well over three years.

If you are here then I assume that you are probably looking for a new phone and cannot decide between the three. Well in this article I am going to breakdown all the three phones for you so that you can take a decision that is right for you.

In order to make things easy I am going to break this down into different sections:-


Lets start this comparision by comparing the displays of all the 3 of the phones because that is where an average person will sprend most of it’s time.

Starting with the iPhone SE which works on an LCD panel with a resolution of 750×1334 pixels which in laymans term is a 720p display. This is where Apple had to cut corners in order to bring down their price. However a low resolution LCD panel had it’s own advantages like helping to improve the battery life of the phone which we will come to in just a second. If a totally crisp and OLED display is your priority then I would suggest considering the other two options.

Moving on to the Pixel 4a, we see an upgrade in terms of the display over the iPhone. The Pixel rocks a FHD OLED screen with it’s perfect blacks and the well loved Always on Display with the “Now Playing”playing option that shows you the name of the songs playing nearby.

Finally coming to the OnePlus Nord which arguably has the best display compared to both of these phones- having not only an OLED panel but also a 90hz refresh rate which makes using the phone in everyday life for everyday activities very smooth and fast and provides a great user experience.


This is where the iPhone SE catches up and leaves both the Pixel and the Nord in dust with its powerful flagship A13 Bionic processor that is believed to be even better than the highest end snapdragon processors in some aspects. This allows the iPhone SE to have similar performance compared to the iPhone 11 Pro while being less than half it’s price. Gaming on this would also be excellent compared to both the other phones.

The Pixel 4a is the least powerful phone out of the lot with just a Snapdragon 730G processor which is a mid ranged processor. It is going to be fine for normal everyday usage but the differences would start to show when you try gaming on it. So if gaming is your top priority then you might wanna look at other options.

Coming to the OnePlus Nord, the performance difference between the Pixel and this is not too high. The Nord rocks a Snapdragon 765g processor which is slightly better than the Pixel’s 730g but it is not something that would blow your socks off. However the 90hz refresh rate of the Nord makes the phone feel snappier and in general a good amount faster than the Pixel.


The iPhone SE carries the same camera module from the iPhone 8 but just has a better optimisation due to the upgraded processor. It is a very decent camera and takes the typical iPhone pictures with great dynamic range and very true to life pictures.

Pixel 4a boasts the best camera out of the lot (as well as from most of the flagships from 2020) thanks to Google’s great software optimisation. Pixel have always been a class apart when it comesto camera performance, atleast for still shots, though not so much for videos. It has the best dynamic range and the truest to life colours. It also has the best edge detection if you click potrait stots.

The OnePlus Nord has the worst cameras out of the lot unfortunately, although it has the widest (pun intended) range of selection of cameras including wide, depth and macro mode. Given good amount of lightings the shots come out decent but do not expect anything more than that.


Apart form all the things we talked about there are different miscellaneous features here and there that makes each one of this phone somewhat special from one another and it is crazy how we are getting all this at such a low price thanks to the competition.

The iPhone SE though it comes with a regular charger, does support fast charging and apart from that it also supports wireless charging, something that is pretty rare at this price point. Another rare thing that it sports is a IP Certified water resistance which is again rare at this price. The iPhone also has the smallest battery out of the lot with just a 1821mAH battery.

Pixel 4a is one of the few smartphones of 2020 that still has a headphone jack and I can’t thank google enough for keeping this great feature from last year’s Pixel 3a. The Pixel has a bigger battery as compared to the iPhone but it still cannot be considered as a big battery sitting at 3140 mAH. However with moderate usage it can easily last you all day.

Pixel 4a retains the headphone jack

OnePlus Nord comes with the same Warp Charging 30T that the flagship $900 OnePLus 8 Pro comes with that makes your phone go from 0-70% in just 30 mins. The Nord has the biggest battery out of the lot with an impressive 4115 mAH battery at this price point. This means that even with heavy usage this phone ill be able to last you all day.


iPhone SE is priced at $399(Rs 41,500) for the 64GB varient, $449(Rs46,800) for the 128GB variant and $549(Rs 57,300) for the 256GB variant.

Pixel 4a just comes in one variant and costs $349(Rs26,390 approx) for 128GB.

OnePlus Nord comes in 3 variants, $325(Rs 24,999) for 64GB variant that is only available in India and a 128GB and 256GB variant costing $399(Rs 27,999) and $469(Rs29,999) respectively.


So after looking at all the pros and cons of all these phones the question still remains as to what phone should you buy?

All the three phones have their advantages but there are just slight advantages of one over the another in some aspects.

If you are looking for a powerful phone in which you can game at high frame rates then you should go for the iPhone, it is the most powerful one out of the lot, just consider that the small battery would take a hit in just a few hours. Other than that if you have been using iOS or want to us iOS then this is the obvious choice.

If you are looking for an excellent camera with the purest android then the Pixel 4a is the best one for you with it’s unmatched camera performance.

Lastly if you are a phone enthusiast and things like a 90hz refresh rate and really fast charging are your priority then there is no better phone than the OnePlus Nord.

Most people will be happy with either of these devices and it would surely last them for 3 or more years.