Apple unveiled the Apple Watch Series 3 on Tuesday.
It’s the latest Apple Watch, and its big new feature is that it adds cellular connectivity, which allows users to send messages and receive phone calls even when an iPhone isn’t nearby. The number is the same number that you use on an iPhone, Apple said. You can also stream music.
It looks similar to earlier Apple Watch models but has a red dot on the Digital Crown, which lets folks know it’s the newer model. The device will launch in new finishes, including a new gray ceramic option, along with new bands from Nike and Apple
During the announcement, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that the Apple Watch is now the number one watch in the world, ahead of even the most popular traditional brands. Cook also said customer satisfaction is at 97 percent.
The new Apple Watches will launch with watchOS 4, the latest software, which includes new health tracking functions, Siri recommendations, new watch faces and more.
How LTE works on the watch
The Series 3 watch still uses your iPhone’s connection when the phone is nearby, but as soon as you move away from the phone, the Series 3 LTE seamlessly kicks in. We weren’t able to test this at the event; all the Watches on display were flying solo, sans phones.
You can make calls directly from the Watch by tapping a button on the top-left corner of the watch face. From there, you can browse contacts to reach out to through a few interfaces: favorites, recents, contacts, and the keypad. So it’s just like using your phone—or really, like the previous Apple Watch, for the most part. The difference is that you can do it anywhere.
The Watch intelligently picks up your voice, and you do not have to hold it up to your mouth—in ideal conditions, anyway.
As expected, all models of the Series 3 do GPS, but LTE is an addition. We also tested location services by locating the event on Apple Maps. It’s still a tight screen to work with, so its usefulness is debatable. But it was able to pinpoint our location without a phone nearby.
In practice, the Apple Watch Series 3 is very similar to its predecessor. It just does it all without the phone, which is great, because the phone proximity limitation was the biggest downside of the Series 2.
The Series 2 could last about two days on a single charge. The LTE Series 3 only lasts around one day. That’s a little disappointing, but it’s right at most people’s tolerance threshold.
Form factor and styling
The form factor did not feel at all different from the Series 2. Tim Cook said, when announcing the Watch, that it is only 0.25mm thicker at one point. We didn’t notice this when wearing it. We tried both sizes of the new Watch, and they each looked and felt the same as their predecessors.
The LTE version of the watch has a red knob instead of a silver one, but that’s all there is to it. Of course, there are a plenty of wristbands, and they all look great.
If it sounds like we’re not revealing much here, that’s because there’s not much to reveal. The Series 3 is the same watch you’ve used before, but with LTE. But that’s a critical addition, and you already know what it means