The Apple Watch 2 is here and, well, it’s not actually called the Apple Watch 2; no, Apple’s calling this one the Apple Watch Series 2 — and no one’s really sure why.
I’m going to say this right off the bat: the new Apple Watch is not exciting, nor features anything that would convince me as a user to get one. Apple hasn’t introduced new shapes, the hardware is more or less the same and there has, apparently, been marginal updates to the wearable’s battery performance.
The keynote launch itself was like a who’s who of global brands. Nike, Pokemon, Nintendo — all were wheeled out to worship at the alter of Apple. There wasn’t a lot of meat to get stuck into; just a lot of people telling you how cool the Apple Watch Series 2 is.
One aspect that really stuck out to me was when a guy from Nike said, “It’s never been easier to start running.”
I mean: are you kidding? I can start running right this second. I don’t need a $150 pair of Nike trainers and an Apple Watch to do this. Still, the Apple Watch is popular; Apple showed it is now just behind Rolex for year on year revenue in 2016 during the keynote.
There still isn’t one killer feature, though. I mean, you can do all the fitness stuff with a cheaper FitBit and I never liked the idea of notifications on my wrist — to me it just seems silly. Nine times out of ten I will return the communication on my phone, either by text or calling, so a wrist-based notification is no better, really, than a vibration in my pocket. Granted, it looks better but that’s about it.
Still. There are some new things inside the Apple Watch Series 2. Here are 9 quick points on Apple’s latest wearable device:
It’s got a new name
The new Apple Watch isn’t called “Apple Watch 2”. Instead it’s got the rather more fancy name of “Apple Watch Series 2”. But where’s Series 1, you might ask? Apple is keeping the original Apple Watch on sale, but now calling it “Series 1” and giving it a dual core processor bump (the same process in the Apple Watch Series 2.
It’s Swim Proof
This is probably the coolest feature of Apple Watch Series 2. Apple has been able to seal every hole and entry in the Apple Watch to make it water resistant up to 50 meters.
This mean you can swim all day long with the Apple Watch Series 2 and it won’t even be at risk of damage. What’s really cool is Apple also redesigned the new Apple Watch’s speaker to actually sense when you leave the water and vibrate to shake out any water that go in the speaker.
It’s Got An S2 Chip
The new Apple Watch now has a dual core processor called the S2 that is 50% faster then the one in the first Apple Watch. It’s also got a much improved GPU that features 2x the graphics performance, which can even handle 60 frames per second.
It’s Got A 2nd Generation Display
The Apple Watch Series 2 also has a display that is 2x brighter than before.
Matter of fact, at 1000 nits it’s the brightest display Apple has ever made. This makes it a terrific display for reading outside–even in bright sunlight.
It’s Got Built-In GPS
Another long requested feature that’s made it into the Apple Watch Series 2 is GPS. Yes, this means your Apple Watch Series 2 can track your pace, location, and distance even when not paired to an iPhone. This is HUGE for athletes and people who like using apps to track their runs and walks, yet not be bogged down by an iPhone in their pocket.
It Comes In 3 Styles
The Apple Watch Series to comes in three material builds: aluminum and stainless steel as before, but with an all new material build: ceramic white–which looks absolutely gorgeous. Of course, you can expect all new bands available for Apple Watch Series 2 as well.
It runs watchOS 3
No surprise here. The Apple Watch Series 2 runs watchOS 3.
Apple Watch Nike +
One big surprise is Apple has announced a partnership with Nike to create a special edition of the Apple Watch called Apple Watch Nike +.
The Apple Watch Nike + is designed with the runner in mind, with special Nike+ software and the Watch itself features a perforated sport band and is made of a lightweight aluminum case and comes in a choice of four colors.
Cost and Release Date
The Apple Watch Series 2 will start at $369.
The Apple Watch Series 1 (the old Apple Watch with a new dual core processor) will now start at $269 and be in stores from September 16th.