Apple just dropped the latest iteration of the most popular watch in the world. So you could say that a new release is kind of importnt.
This new Series 5 keeps everything that made its predecessor so desirable, including interesting features like the ECG sensor, while bringing a few new features of its own.
Thanks to a new and industry-first LTPO Retina display and a few extra goodies under the hood, like a new ambient light sensor, ICs and fancy power management, the Apple Watch finally has enough power to enable Always-On operation.
It works in the familiar way – when not actively in use, or in other words, facing the user, watch faces get dimmed, less detailed and dynamic and refresh less often. Apple’s new display even manages its refresh rate in accordance so no unnecessary battery is wasted on display refresh cycles.
Workout metrics get an Always-On mode as well, meaning they can remain visible on your watch face even while it is in its low-power state.
All-day battery life
Well, 18 hours, to be precise, which is kind of all-day, we guess. But on the plus side, that is with Always-On display turned on. Presumably, the number can be bumped-up higher if you opt-out of the fancy new AoD.
Compass for navigation
GPS is not a novelty of Apple Watch, but, a dedicated compass hasn’t really been a thing up until now. The new positioning chip can provide heading information as well as latitude, longitude and current elevation. Apple is putting it to work with a new Watch Maps app that now allows you to see which way you are facing. There is also a compass complication for your watch face. Also, the compass will be open to third-party apps as well so developers can incorporate it into other experiences as well.
International Emergency Calling
Pretty straight-forward, yet pretty nifty. Joining the ranks of other heath features, like early warnings based on ECG readings and fall detection, is the ability to make an emergency call on any cellular Apple Watch around the world.
New materials and styles
Of course, no Apple Watch launch would be complete without some new style variants. Despite mostly retaining its design all the way from the original Apple Watch, this new Series 5 still manages to offer fresh new flavors .
A major novelty for the Series 5 is Apple Watch Studio. Available both in store and online, it is a mix and match system allowing you to match any casing with any band you wish. Meaning that with Series 5 you are no longer limited to the combinations Apple pre-selects.
Also Series 5 also brings is a new material option for the shell – titanium. It is lighter than stainless steel while also maintaining great strength and rigidity. It comes in two brushed finishes – one sporting the natural silver color of titanium and the other – space black.
Stainless steel variants remain on offer, in gold, silver and space black. So do aluminum in silver, gold and space gray. And if you opt for an aluminum one, you will be pleased to know that the Series 5 is now made from 100% recycled 7000 series aluminum.
The Nike Line gets new additions as well, including colors for the Nike Sport Band and reflective Nike Sport Loop. Last, but not least, Hermes is introducing another version it its popular color block band with a new Della Cavalleria print, and an all-black version. Fresh Nike and Hermes watch faces are incoming as well.
Pricing and availability
Apple Watch Series 5 (GPS) starts at $399 and Apple Watch Series 5 (GPS + Cellular) starts at $499. Both models can be ordered right now from apple.com and will be available in stores starting September 20 in the US and 38 other countries and regions for the GPS-only version. The GPS + Cellular model is limited the US and 20 other countries and regions.
The new Apple Watch Hermès and new Apple Watch bands are also available online today and coming to stores on September 20. The Nike Watch will be a bit tardy and should come to stores on October 4.
While the Series 4 gets discontinued, the Apple Watch Series 3 remain in Apple’s lineup as well, now with a new price. WatchOS 6 coming is coming to those two on September 19. Apple Watch Series 1 and 2 should get the update later this fall.