Considering how most iPhones have zero backward compatibility with earlier models, the small bit of leeway you do get with the iPhone SE is welcome as it makes obtaining replacement parts easier and more affordable.
The teardown specialists at iFixit ahead of their full inspection of the second generation iPhone SE have identified which parts from the iPhone 8 can be used in the new phone, and vice versa.
The display assembly (along with the microphone and proximity sensor), SIM tray, Taptic Engine and camera modules are all interchangeable with their iPhone 8 counterparts. Notably, if you do a screen swap, you will lose True Tone – a technology designed to make colors appear more natural – unless you have access to a screen programmer.
While the battery looks identical to the one used in the iPhone 8, the logic board connector is different and thus, not compatible with the iPhone SE. You can connect an iPhone 11 battery to an SE as they use the same connector but it won’t turn on, iFixit found. Worse yet, you can’t even replace an iPhone SE battery with a genuine iPhone SE battery without triggering a service warning.
Apple unveiled its second generation iPhone SE on April 15 and started shipping the $399 device a little over a week later on April 24. iFixit is in the process of conducting a full teardown and aims to publish its findings on “Apple’s most interesting recycling project yet” on Monday.