Eight ways the new Apple Watch Series 6 is a bigger upgrade than you think
New colours, new sensors and a new service make this update the biggest yet.
Apple has launched a new Apple Watch Series 6, bringing a new high-end wearable to join an inaugural mid-range model and a brand-new service that’s powered by Apple’s iconic wearable. But while it might not seem like this is a huge upgrade, it’s actually bigger than it seems. Here’s why:
1. APPLE’S BLOOD O2 SENSOR IS BETTER THAN FITBIT’S
As rumoured, the Apple Watch Series 6 can measure the oxygen levels in your blood, thanks to a new sensor that uses red and infrared light to calculate the colour of your blood and determine its oxygen level. Unlike Fitbit devices, which only measure your blood
oxygen levels while you sleep, on the new Apple Watch you can take a Blood O2 reading in just 15 seconds at any time of day.
2. THE DISPLAY IS BETTER THAN EVER
Apple launched a new, larger display with the Series 4, and an alwayson option with the Series 5. With the Series 6, it’s even better. Apple says the always-on display on the Series 6 is 2.5 times brighter when your wrist is down, one of the complaints we had with the Series 5. With a new, efficient S6 chip, the battery life won’t suffer.
3. YOU DON’T NEED AN IPHONE TO USE IT (KIND OF)
While we’re still not quite at full iPhone independence, Apple has introduced a new way for families to set up Apple Watches for people who don’t have an iPhone, such as kids, parents or, we suppose, Android users. While those watches won’t work in quite the same way – for one, you’ll need a cellular connection – they’ll be able to enjoy most of the same features, including the App Store, Messages, Maps, Apple Pay, Music, and of course, fitness tracking. It even has a new Schooltime feature that displays a yellow circle in the watch face that Apple says is “for teachers and parents to easily recognize, signifying that access to apps is restricted and Do Not Disturb is turned on”.
4. THE NEW FACES APPEAR VERY USEFUL
Apple always offers up some new faces with every Watch launch, but
this year’s crop isn’t just about cartoon characters and colours. A bunch of new watch faces will bring a slew of useful looks and styles. These include:
GMT: Displays multiple time zones with a focus on where you are Chronograph Pro: Adds a series of digital dials including a tachymeter for measuring speed
Typograph: Brings four new type styles and scripts
Stripes: Lets you add any colour combination you want
Memoji faces: An animated and interactive collaboration with Geoff McFetridge
That’s much better than Woody and Buzz (sorry Toy Story fans.
5. THE WATCH IS VITAL TO APPLE’S NEW SERVICE
Alongside the new hardware, Apple also launched a new £10-a-month Fitness+ service that offers 10 types of workouts (yoga, cycling, dance, treadmill walk and run, strength, core, hit, rowing, and cool down) and Apple Music integration. Fitness+ is ‘powered by the Apple Watch’, automatically syncing when you start a workout on an iPhone or Apple TV, and using the metrics recorded on your wrist to guide your workout.
6. THERE ARE ACTUAL COLOURS
With the Series 6 Watch, Apple isn’t just relying on the bands to bring character. For the first time, you can get the Apple Watch in a variety of colours, including blue and Product Red. There are also new gold and graphite stainless steel varieties.
7. THE NEW BANDS ARE COOL
Along with the new Apple Watch Series colours, all Apple Watch users can take advantage of the new bands available for sale. There are the swim-proof and stretchable solo loop band and braided solo loop with no clasp, buckle, or overlapping materials that come in multiple colours, as well as the leather link band that uses magnets to adjust to your wrist.
8. SAME OLD PRICE
Prices for the Apple Watch Series 6 starts at the same £379 as the Series 5. The 44mm model costing £409, and cellular adds £100.
The Apple Watch Series 6 looks sharp in either red or blue.
Apple Fitness+ is tied into the Apple Watch.