It’s finally here. Apple is releasing the Apple Watch Series 3 today. We decided to take a look at its features to determine what’s new with this latest generation and whether or not it lives up to all the hype.
Better, Faster, Stronger
While you might think that the new Apple Watch Series 3 looks pretty similar to the Apple Watch Series 2, there are some major improvements internally. One of the biggest upgrades is that the operating system has been updates to Watch OS 4. The software is new and the screen now scrolls vertically instead of horizontally. Additionally, it now has a 70% faster dual core processor, which I’m pretty excited about.
Remember, It's a Smartwatch Not a Smartphone"
One of the biggest new developments with the Apple Watch Series 3 over the previous incarnations of the Apple Watch is that you don’t need to physically have your iPhone on you for the watch to work, since it can connect to your phone remotely. This is definitely a plus, but phone calls kill your watch’s battery life after about an hour. I’m not really sure it is worth it to add an Apple Watch to your data plan for an extra $10 a month if the battery life is so quickly depleted by phone calls. If you only use your Apple Watch casually, however, the battery life fares a bit better, lasting about a day.
Two of a Kind...But What's the Difference
There are actually two different versions of the Apple Watch Series 3 that will be on the market. One will be a $399 model that will feature both GPS and LTE capabilities, while there will also be a cheaper model (at $329) that will not have LTE capabilities. Apple will also continue to sell the Apple Watch Series 1 as a budget-price device at $249. While the Series 1 model will be updated from previous versions and will now contain OS 4 and a dual core processor like Series 3, it will not feature GPS or LTE. So if you don’t want to dish out $400 quite yet, but want an Apple Watch, there are some good alternatives for you.
Your New Workout Buddy
If you’re a workout junkie, or aspire to be one, the Apple Watch Series 3 has the potential to become your new best friend. It comes with workout tracking and coaching apps, it’s waterproof, it can connect with smart gym equipment, and it has a built in altimeter so it can tell you what elevation you are at. It also can tell you about yourself--monitoring your heart rate, even when resting. Apple is promoting this watch as “the ultimate sports watch,” and it’s easy to see why.
While there is definitely some room for improvement, the Apple Watch Series 3 is a clear upgrade from previous generations of Apple Watches. The new operating system, dual core processors, GPS and LTE capabilities, and Bluetooth connectivity are huge developments. I do think that if Apple wants to get consumers to take the watch’s LTE capability seriously Apple needs to improve the watch’s battery life. My crystal ball tells me that upcoming series of Apple Watches will be stand-alone devices and not accessories, but until then, the Apple Watch Series 3 is a step in the right direction.