There are some rumors that the new Apple Watch Series 6 could be announced as soon as tomorrow. Whether it is tomorrow or next month, there is some excitement about it and I want to put down some of the things we may see with this new Apple Watch.
The Apple Watch Series 6 is Coming
I have a lot of readers check in about Garmin, Apple Watch, and other running GPS watches from time to time. So, I thought it would be a good time to put out there what we have heard about the upcoming Apple Watch Series 6 and what we may see.
Let’s face it – the Apple Watch Series 5 was kind of a bust, at least compared to the Series 4. It was definitely an evolution and not a big one. Always On Display? Yes, that is nice but I still chuckle thinking that one of the headline items was a compass. I cannot even remember how many years ago that Garmin put that on many of their higher end watches and that was not even something that was a big tick on the item list! 🙂
This year, we should definitely see some new things. Here we go!
When is the Apple Watch Series Being Announced?
Some leakers have said that it could be announced as soon as tomorrow, September 8. There is a press release coming out in the morning and there was a YouTube leak of some kind of YouTube video being shown around 1PM.
But, there are other trusted people that say it may not come out until the new iPhone announcement which could be next month. Either way, we should definitely see Apple Watch Series 6 in stores by mid-October/late-October, at the latest.
TWO New Apple Watches?
This is one that I am excited to see! For a while, Apple has relegated a previous model as their entry level model. We saw that with the Series 1 when the Series 3 was announced and then the Series 3 with the Series 5 models.
New Apple Watch to Replace the Entry Level Series 3?
Basically, Apple got to discount older tech and sell them as the entry level Apple Watches. And they are certainly not bad prices, either! We have seen the 38mm Series 3 on sale for as low as $169 and the larger 42mm on sale for as low as $199. For a really good smartwatch that comes with GPS onboard, that is a really great deal!
Cheaper to Use New Parts Than Old Parts
But, it looks like Apple is going to release a new entry level model. This makes perfect sense because, right now, Apple is having to use years old parts and tech to keep filling the demand for the Series 3 models. That is actually not cheap due to advances in technology that make new boards and components even cheaper to produce.
So, it is good money sense for Apple to release a new, lower cost Apple Watch. My guess is it would change up the casing from aluminum, possibly take out the ability to do the ECG, maybe use a cheaper display panel. They would likely try to keep it under that magic $199 price to go after FitBit’s latest watches and Garmin and Samsung.
Under $199 and Better than Series 3?
But, it will likely be quite a bit faster and possibly have better battery life than the Series 3. Think a watch targeting the masses with an emphasis on price fit more for kids. There is now the code that had been found that shows that multiple Apple Watches could be linked to a single iPhone (something in a way that would be ideal for parents to hook up with their kids’ watches).
If you are looking for an Apple Watch experience for running/fitness/travel but at lower prices, be on the look out for a new, lower cost Apple Watch!
Blood Oxygen Sensor
This is something that other watch brands have had for a while, in fact, Garmin has gone all out and been bringing it out along their fitness line in newer watches.
There is code in the new WatchOS7 that shows blood oxygen monitoring which likely means Apple will have it in their latest Apple Watch Series 6. While it is kind of just a neat metric for most runners with training data, due to covid-19, many people had been using blood oxygen sensors (on the ends of their fingers) to see what levels they are at.
While most of us really do not need this metric for most training or lifestyle things, it would be a huge move by Apple right now with coronavirus. People have already learned to use the ECG built-in to Series 4 and 5 and there have been many reports of danger levels that were captured because of the ECG.
Having the blood oxygen (or, SpO2) sensor in a Series 6 could be enough for some people to upgrade even from Series 5. That being said, the SpO2 sensor is going to cause huge drain on the battery. I actually stopped using it on my Garmin Fenix 6 Pro (it was only on for nighttime use)because it would make me have to charge my battery every 8 days or so – instead of like 13. 🙂 With the Apple Watch that cannot really make it past 1.5-2 days, expect the SpO2 sensor use to drop that battery level even more.
Now, they may have it as an app that would only activate the sensor when you click “start” or something. That would make it similar to the ECG where it is something you intentionally do instead of having it track in the background. They could also do a sporadic monitoring schedule at a few points throughout the day.
Better Battery Life
Hey, speaking of battery life! There was an image captured a little while back that is supposedly the new battery bound for the Series 6. It is an ever so slight increase in power over the current one. However, the Force Touch tech on Apple Watch is going away which means a little extra room under that display. Also, Apple could be using more battery efficient components, and will certainly be using a more energy efficient processor.
Apple will not introduce a new feature that would drain the battery more significantly without having better battery life. In fact, they have proudly used every Apple Watch reveal to show the new features and then say that it has the same battery life as before.
This time, if it stays the same battery life, that could be good news for anyone that doesn’t care about the SpO2 readings. Any battery estimates they are making would be taking that into account so by not using it, you could stretch out your time between charges.
Another thing they could do is to make it a faster charge, or maybe something like a quick charge that powers it up 50% in just a few minutes. That would make people happy as well.
And, speaking of battery life and things hogging it, we will finally see Apple’s native sleep tracking on the Apple Watch. While there are very good 3rd party apps that do sleep tracking, every other fitness watch has a native sleep tracking feature. I love the way Garmin just includes it right into my overall dashboard of things like steps, resting heart rate, calories burned, respirations, miles run, body battery, and my sleep tracking.
It is already in the new WatchOS but it will be on the Series 6. While this is good news for people that want the “Apple touch” on the sleep tracking, Apple had pretty much been letting people know that during the night was the best time to charge by not including it in the past. So, we will see how the battery part pans out!
This is going to be a different kind of reveal for Apple, and likely a big test of how they will do their iPhone reveal. This is one of the reasons I think Apple Watch will take place at a different time than iPhone – Apple wants to test and see the reaction to a virtual reveal before they launch their biggest product of the year.
But, this will certainly be a better upgrade than last year and even those that have been wanting to buy the Series 3 may want to hold off a bit – I hope the new, lower cost model will have the same 40mm/44mm displays of the Series 4/5! At any rate, here is a roundup of things that have been out there for a little bit.
Now, will I switch from Garmin to Apple Watch? If the Apple Watch is not revealed tomorrow, I will do a post on the things it would take to get me to switch, as a runner and a traveler. Hey, I’ve switched before! 🙂