The performance is why the price is higher. A $110 CPU hangs out with the $150+ i3-7350K, and would pretty much smash the $110 Core i3-7100. But you need a GPU to do it.
It's kind of weird to me that performance is so similar. I guess, for games at least, HT really is acting like additional physical cores.
I always thought that (based on older Sandy Bridge reviews) the argument that "physical cores are better" was bunk, but it's nice to see that it's actually true. The newer I3's and Ryzen 3's is a wash.
That said, I was hoping AMD prices would be lower; to get something of a mid-tier PC you need to spend mid-tier money; I guess my next gaming PC will be a Kaby Lake Pentium after all.
EDIT: All these reviews and NO ONE is testing overclocked R3's? Madness, it's a core feature differentiator.