Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors

Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors

Update: The Apple Watch 2 release date announcement is this week, according to all of the rumors, and it’ll debut at the iPhone 7 launch event. Here’s the news so far.

You really want the Apple Watch 2 for all of this new features, especially after holding out on the current Apple Watch, or maybe you got that one too and are already searching for a smartwatch upgrade.

Good news: Apple CEO Tim Cook has promised that the Apple Watch will get “better and better” and it’ll be something you can’t imagine having you lived without. Sounds incredibly promising.

Watch OS 3 beta for the first Apple Watch successfully tweaks the software more to our liking, but software alone can’t fulfill such a tall order, so his comments are the biggest official Apple Watch 2 hint we’ve seen in 2016.

Outside of Cook’s comments, we’ve heard that there may be two Apple Watch 2 models with more battery efficient processors, one that’s cheaper and one at normal price with a GPS chip.

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The Apple Watch 2 release date is shrouded in so much mystery that not even Siri knows the answer, though she gave me a heads-up about the dates for WWDC 2016, where watch OS 3 was announced.

Asking my Apple Watch: “When does the Apple Watch 2 come out?” only gets me to this message: “ should be able to answer that question. Continue on the iPhone.”

There are two important things you should know about this answer. First, of course Apple’s official website doesn’t reveal such juicy information. I’ve checked. Everyday.

Second, this is one of the many areas in which the Apple Watch throws you to the iPhone instead of handling tasks itself. Obviously, there’s plenty of room for improvement and a need for a sequel.

Siri, apps and fitness tracking need a serious tune up. While some of that’s coming with Watch OS 3, more sensors and even greater waterproof guarantees should be added to a new Apple Watch in 2016.

There’s growing evidence that a second-gen iPhone-compatible smartwatch is in development at the Cupertino company. Let’s get into the latest rumors point-by-point.

Read our in-depth review of the Apple WatchCut to the chaseWhat is it? The second generation Apple WatchWhen is it out? September 7 if it arrives alongside with the iPhone 7What will it cost? Probably a lot, similar to the current WatchApple Watch 2 release date

Although Siri didn’t answer my question about the Apple Watch 2 release date, there’s now only one likely point in 2016 in which I could see the company’s next wearable launch: September 7.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


That’s the big date that Apple will launch the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. It’s logical to think the smartwatch refresh will appear during the press conference, too.

Sure enough, everything we’ve seen so far says that the Apple Watch 2 went into production in Q3 2016, according to supply chain sources, which would fit nicely with a September launch.

Unsurprisingly, we didn’t see an next iPhone-compatible smartwatch announced on March 21, as some had previously thought. An annual cycle for the wearable is a bit overeager for even diehard Apple fans.

Instead, iPhone SE and iPad Pro 9.7 graced the stage. Oh, Apple Watch newness was there, too – but in the form of fresh Apple Watch bands and a lower price. That’s all we got at the one-year anniversary.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


We also didn’t see it or any hardware alongside iOS 10 at WWDC 2016 in June. That leaves us with September along with the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus debut as the only likely point in 2016.

September 7 gives Apple enough time to tinker with its smartwatch and not make early adopters feel too cheaped, like it surely would have if the company stuck to a more rigid 12-month-upgrade schedule.

Apple Watch 2 price

There may be some wiggle room with the Apple Watch price, considering US retailers had the iPhone smartwatch on sale months before the company actually lowered the official price.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


It launched at a hard-to-justify starting price of $349 (£299, AU$499), and the unofficial price drop during Black Friday took it down to $299 at some stores. Four months later, Apple Stores made the discounted price official.

Introducing the Apple Watch 2 at this new price from the get-go would put the gadget in more hands and on more wrists. Just don’t expect the real gold Apple Watch Edition price to budge from its high of $17,000 (£13,500, AU$24,000).

Of course, this is Apple and we live in reality: Apple really doesn’t do price drops. No, it adds “magical” features for the same price, more often than not.

Adding a GPS chip, and rumors of a Micro-LED panel for the screen instead of the Apple Watch 1’s AMOLED display, will likely to raise the cost and only cements Apple pricery stereotype.

Likewise, new rumors suggest Apple is switching to a space-saving “One Glass Solution.” It eliminates the multiple layers involved in the current Apple Watch OLED and could make room for more battery life. But GPS, a newfangled screen and extra power would come at a cost.

My gadget-spending money is on Apple adding in just enough new Apple Watch 2 features, like GPS, that it resets to the original Apple Watch price of $349 (£299, AU$499).

The current discounted Apple Watch price could be used by the Apple Watch 2 base model without the GPS chip, retailing at the same as today, $299 (£259, AU$429).

In other words, the price is higher, but not really. That would be a smart Apple strategy.

Apple Watch 2 with a GPS chip

“Does your Apple Watch have GPS?” is the single most asked question I get from people whenever I wear my Apple Watch, and the answer is “No. But kind of.”

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


The Apple Watch 2 really needs to include a GPS chip inside of the watch. Right now, I can map runs initiated by my Apple Watch, but I have to tether it to my iPhone and use the phone GPS.

This means wearing an iPhone armband or carrying my iPhone in my sweaty hand. Throwing an iPhone 6S Plus in my gym shorts isn’t a viable solution anymore. It’s just too big.

An Apple Watch 2 with a built-in GPS chip is supposed to solve that, even if the actual smartwatch remains at the same thickness and with the same design.

Of course, the effectiveness of the GPS chip may not surpass that of a Fitbit Surge or other fitness trackers if the Apple Watch can’t connect to a cellular network by itself.

Apple Watch data without an iPhone?

You may want to wait until the Apple Watch 3 if the latest reports about the Apple Watch 2 are to believed. It may not go iPhone-free after all.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


Apple is supposedly having trouble with the cellular chip needed to download information to the Watch independent of an iPhone. The issue? Battery life drain, according to a Bloomberg report.

It’s become very clear that Apple want to untether the Watch from the iPhone, but that may not happen this time around until more battery efficient cellular data chips become a reality.

More battery life

Apple Watch 2 is poised to gain extra battery life, even if it doesn’t have enough of a boost to end up with a cellular chip. Its is using some design tricks to push it beyond a day-and-a-half of uptime.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


The aforementioned Micro-LED display would be a step up from the AMOLED screen (generally a step up from any LCD panel, like those used on the iPhone), offering better brightness and battery savings.

There’s also the fact that it is likely to contain a smaller, more efficient processor, providing extra room and a less taxing CPU.

Finally, there are late-breaking rumors that the Apple Watch 2 display will be thinner with “deeper” 3D Touch functionality. That thinness is partly due to giving it a battery boost.

Right now, the Apple Watch 42mm has a 250mAh battery capacity, while the 38mm size has a 205mAh battery. We’ll look out for any confirmation on a higher battery capacity in the lead up to the launch.

Apple Watch 2 design changes

Most recently, we heard that the next Apple Watch will be thinner by measures of up to a 40% reduction in thickness. However, that could be meant for the Apple Watch 3.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


There’s a good chance that the next Apple Watch won’t mix things up much in terms of design. Or at all, if Ming-Chi Quo’s insider knowledge ends up becoming truth.

Apple’s wearable won’t boast any visual changes to the design, according to his sources, as reported to AppleInsider. A more significant Apple Watch refresh could happen some time after, possibly in 2017.

Apple Watch 2 will have the same screen size, shape and resolution as the first Apple Watch, according to another leak. This is the way the Cupertino firm does things, after all.

No FaceTime camera

There was a lot of speculation floating around regarding an Apple Watch 2 with a FaceTime camera. It’s a natural assumption, as some Samsung Watches have included a camera.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


Notice: all of the camera rumors have evaporated and we’re heard there’s a good reason for that: Apple is focused on adding the GPS chip and, eventually, untethering the watch from the phone.

In other words, don’t expect to see a FaceTime camera in the next version of the Apple Watch. The company has other priorities, according to our sources. FaceTime Audio will have to do.

What’s being saved for Apple Watch 3?

There’s an outside chance that new models besides Sport and Edition, with rumors of titanium, platinum and perhaps even Liquidmetal, but big design shifts are expected for Apple Watch 3.

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


Future Apple Watch models could also have a new breed of smart band, as a recent patent application has been filed for a strap that has light fibres woven in.

This means you’ll be able to get notifications on your wrist – all the way around. Hopefully it won’t flash or be too overt – simply function as a second screen for more information than possible on the small screen.

If the cellular capabilities don’t make it to the Apple Watch 2, you can be that the company will make it a priority on a 2017 Apple Watch.

Tim Cook promises Apple Watch 2 will be better

Apple CEO Tim Cook recently teased that “you’ll see the Apple Watch getting better and better,” and he soon expects “people will say, ‘How could I have ever thought about not wearing this watch?'”

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors

He could have been hinting at an inevitable watchOS 3 software update, but it’ll take an Apple Watch 2 hardware announcement to meet those high expectations. Ipso facto, he just confirmed the new Apple Watch.

Right now, plenty of people can live without the Apple Watch, and even Cook acknowledges this: “We’re still in learning mode. We’re learning fairly quickly, though. We know a lot more than we did a year ago.”

There’s a lot of promise behind these statements, even if the Apple boss doesn’t distinctly mention the Apple Watch 2 by name.

While neither the March 21 Apple press conference nor WWDC 2016 ushered in the second coming of the Apple Watch, we’ll be scanning the internet and reading between the lines of Apple’s statements (and the lines of iOS 10 code) for even the smallest suggest of the Apple Watch 2.

10 things you didn’t know Apple Watch could doApple Watch 2: what we want to see

Now we’ve spent a decent chunk of time with the original Apple Watch it’s got us thinking – how can Apple improve on its first wearable? Well, in a number of ways it turns out and most of them haven’t been addressed by Apple Watch OS 2 or even Watch OS 3.

So without further ado, here’s what we want to see from the Apple Watch 2.

1. Longer battery life

We never expected the Apple Watch would have great battery life, after all few smartwatches outside of Pebble do really, and with around a day and a half manageable on a single charge we’d like to see a bit more.

Charging a phone once a day is bad enough, but having to charge your watch that frequently (or at all really) is a bit much and the prospect of having your watch run out of battery when you’re away from a charger isn’t terribly appealing either. So we really, really hope that the Apple Watch 2 has better battery life.

We don’t expect miracles, but would two or even three days between charges really be so much to ask?

2. A round face

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


Some people are probably big fans of the Apple Watch’s square design and we’re not saying the Apple Watch 2 needs to ditch that, but just as the Apple Watch has multiple size options the Apple Watch 2 could offer multiple shape choices, so you can pick between a square and a circle.

That would instantly make it a lot more appealing to a lot more people and it’s a logical evolution of all the customisation options offered by the first gen model, giving you one more way to make the Apple Watch your own.

3. A less chunky design

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


The Apple Watch is actually a little smaller than most competitors, but it’s still big by wristwatch standards and it’s got a slightly chunky design, so we’d like to see Apple refine that a little.

Chunky is not a word that comes to mind when looking at most Apple products, but we’re hopeful that a change will come there, after all this is a first generation device, so Apple is presumably just focused on getting the basics right.

4. Android compatibility

This won’t happen, but wouldn’t it be amazing if it did? Right now no-one with an Android phone is going to buy the Apple Watch (though Apple is probably hoping a lot of people will switch to an iPhone as a result), but if, IF, the Apple Watch 2 got full Android compatibility then it could become very hard to compete with.

The first gen watch is already almost certainly going to become the bestselling smartwatch by far. If everyone without an iPhone could buy it too then it would surely dwarf the competition. Then again maybe that wouldn’t be such a good thing… we do like choice.

5. More sensors

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


One of the Apple Watch’s biggest selling points is as a health accessory, but while early rumors pointed to a sensor-packed device, many of those sensors haven’t made the cut.

A mix of hairy arms and inconclusive readings have caused sensors for blood pressure, blood oxygen and stress levels to be removed, so it would be nice to see Apple revisit them for the next version. Plus it turns out tattoos really mess with the heart rate sensor.

Right now the Apple Watch is a decent tool for tracking your health, but it could be a whole lot better.

6. Built in GPS

Similarly the Apple Watch is packed with fitness tracking tools, but one thing it lacks is built-in GPS. As such it can’t be classed as a full-blown running watch. So we’d like to see that added for the Apple Watch 2, enabling runners and cyclists to leave their smartphone at home.

7. Less clicks, more flicks

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors


The digital crown on the Apple Watch is a great idea, but at the moment the interface is perhaps too focused on clicks, with not enough flicks. Which is to say you rarely touch the screen to navigate.

That’s not entirely a bad thing as the display is small and avoiding fingerprints is always a good thing to aim for, but in some ways it seems a step back, when most smart devices are all about interacting directly with a touchscreen. It’s also a little less intuitive than it could be, particularly if you’re used to tapping and swiping on an iPhone.

8. A sharper screen

Depending on which size model you opt for the Apple Watch has a screen resolution of either 340 x 272 or 390 x 312. Given its small size that’s not bad and it’s comparable with many other smartwatches, but right now no smartwatch has a pin-sharp display so that’s something we’d like to see on the Apple Watch 2.

For one thing the lack of visible pixels will make it look more watch-like when using an analogue watch face, but beyond that it’s just nicer looking at a crystal clear screen than a lower resolution one.

9. Lower price

Apple devices are always expensive and with the Apple Watch seemingly positioned as a bit of a luxury item its price is very much on the steep side. In fact is you opt for a Watch Edition version it costs up to a wallet-melting $17,000 / £13,500 / AU$24,000.

If you’re super-rich then that’s fine for a timepiece that won’t be out of date in a year, but even Mr Monopoly might think twice about shelling out that sort of money on a smartwatch.

Even at the lower end prices start at £299 / $349 / AU$499. That’s already more than just about any Android Wear watch and that’s for a sport model. To get a classy look that can compete with say the LG Watch Urbane you’re looking at a starting price of around £559 / $649 / AU$949. That’s insane, so we hope the Apple Watch 2 is little bit more affordable.

If it’s not, at least the current model will be dropped in price to make that the ‘budget’ Apple Watch we’re all craving.

10. More storage

The Apple Watch comes with 8GB of built in storage, which is pretty good by smartwatch standards, except that only 2GB of that can be used for music and just 75MB for photos.

Of course you’ll usually have it paired to an iPhone with far more storage space, but if for example Apple does add GPS so we can go running without our phone then it would be nice to have space for all our tunes.

Huawei has a stylish smartwatch of its own

Updated: Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumorsSource:

50 thoughts on “Apple Watch 2 release date, news and rumors

  1. I think the shape issue may disappear if Apple resorts to holographic displays (e.g. Ostendo displays). The watch shape could then vary, but the projector could remain square to maximize screen real estate.

  2. At the very least, Apple must make the watch the best voice controlled computer in the industry. Furthermore it has as to have more valuable stand alone (not tethered to an iphone) capability. Then add a battery life of three days and it will be a winner.

  3. If Apple Watch 2 does not have GPS then I won’t buy. I won’t have a smart watch that requires me to run with my watch and my phone.

  4. I am planing on buying the next generation Apple Watch. My biggest complaint would be waterproofing, I want to at least be able to wear my watch in the shower, I will take it off to swim but it should not be the case. More watch independence from the phone, WiFi would be a good start along with GPS.

  5. And unfortunately I have come to realize I dislike it not being round. I had my hopes up but now they are dashed.

  6. I hate that it isn’t coming with a round face. Apple used to be all about aesthetics. How can you lead in design when you make an ugly block of a watch? I can’t be without my apple watch at this point. I keep my phone on vibrate always and truly rely on the notifications, but I will NEVER love its looks. Please give us a round option. The moto is so much more stylish.

  7. This is pretty silly. No android watch supports apple, so no apple watch will support android. It has always been like that, and it will be for a while. I own the original apple watch, and I can say it is fine. I use it 2 days and then charge it, and I make calls on it. You want them to pack more stuff into this tiny watch, but then make it cheaper? That seems quite insane thinking about the engineering that went into this. A reply to another comment, Steve Jobs was their marketer/sales manager. Steve Jobs didn’t invent the products, nor engineer/design them. Since he was in charge of all the marketing, everyone gave him credit for what the thousands of workers in that apple building are working on. This watch is perfect if you are active, and you need to read notifications quickly, or answer calls quickly. Also good for screening your emails. It’s a very helpful tool for photography since it gives you a live view. You can hold the phone up in the glaring sun, and take a good picture because you are monitoring it on your watch. I think this list is too far fetched though. If there is one thing you missed, it would be thickness. The watch should be larger in size, but thinner. More memory would be nice, and more settings to improve battery life. The interface is fine, it’s better to keep the fingers off the screen, and makes things faster when you get use to it. I don’t think

  8. wondering how you can just assume that all people don’t like the apple watch.

  9. They’re seriously bringing out another Apple Watch?\n\nSurely everyone who bought one last time has learned their lesson.\n

  10. Enough space for all our tunes? How far are you running that 2GB isn’t going to be enough? You just need decent sync management. While listening to music is ostensibly a positive of Android Wear over the Apple Watch, the sync management is worse than atrocious. That said, iTunes doesn’t have the best history there either. Because iTunes is itself atrocious.

  11. A camera on the Watch is about as desirable and useless as an a-hole on your elbow. Do you think anyone on the receiving end is really going to relish looking up someone’s nose? I second the commentator who sussed this as being by someone who has had little or no actual experience with Apple Watch.

  12. Well I guess we’ll just have to wait and watch.\n\nWait and watch.\n\nAnd watch.\n\nWatch.\n\n\ud83d\ude0f

  13. wouldn’t you say the same thing about the original iPhone compared to where it stands today… you gotta start somewhere

  14. That’s a long list of deficiencies and shortcomings … tell me again what’s so good about this watch for the price being asked for it?

  15. Not for nothing but I have the Surge and HR is crap not that I’d get the Apple Watch as it lacks GPS and costs twice as much as Surge. Garmin 225 edges out the Fitbit for now but lacks an altimeter and smart notifications, the Vivoactive would be ideal but lacks optical HR. Waiting for Fenix with built in HR, that will be Nirvana.

  16. Make it waterproof and give it at least 48 hours of juice during normal usage (and enough juice to track typical biometrics, like heartrate, during an average-length 5K), and it’ll be worth finally replacing my Fitbit Surge. Until then, it’s too much novelty and not enough practicality.

  17. I went water skiing to Lake Powell late last summer. One of the dudes I went with jumped in the lake constantly with his Apple Watch. Didn’t effect it at all. From what I’ve read, it is waterproof, but the more you do it the faster the water will break down the seals and take out the inside. But as I said. Jumping into the lake didn’t effect his at all.

  18. Yeah, the swimming ones were very unscientific. I guess you can’t actually expect any more than the IP rating. Anyway, no worries!

  19. I looked at those links. Thank you. It is certainly encouraging. I never saw, earlier, that Apple was stipulating an IPX7 rating. The videos for swimming and jumping, and pressure testing are great adhoc tests but I would want to have someone dismantle the watch and report on whether there was any measurable moisture inside. I am hoping that the Apple Watch will become available in a form guaranteed to work for swimming in fresh or salt water. But I am certainly encouraged by these findings and appreciate your providing them.

  20. This has various bits in, including a link to Apple’s own product page for the official word:\n\n\n\nThis one including a link to the dude who went swimming in one:\n\n\n\n_

  21. Can you point to the reference you mention? I’d be interested in reading it. I have, since making that comment, heard ad hoc stories of it surviving the shower.

  22. I thought it was waterproof in rain and showers. Didn’t it do pretty well while swimming too, in a real life test (if not in certification).

  23. No mention of waterproofness? You mention GPS for sports enthusiasts but no self-respecting sports enthusiast will want to wear a device that isn’t waterproof at least to rain and showers (for me, add swimming). But its not even on your list.

  24. Love mine. Had it since it came out and use it every day. Don’t wear my Other more expensive watches anymore unless it’s a special occasion. \n\nPros:\nAccurate\nLoads of features that are on your phone but now on your wrist\nWorks as a remote for your phone\nPhone lost in your couch, it can find it\nIs awesome working with your gps while driving\nCan use stand alone to run/workout AND listen to music\nCan access the internet if your phone has already accessed the hot spot pout your using, goes great with city wide internet like time warner or att\nWorks in conjunction with the apps on your phone\nCan make calls from it\nCan send / receive emails from it\nCan respond / receive texts from it\nLove the Digital Crown\nHas Bluetooth capability\n\nLoads more features and you can set it up to work into your life as you would your phone…\n\nThis is not meant to replace your phone and the features of your phone, but to enhance the overal experience of using your phone.\n\nCons:\nDictation can be an issue\nSiri is better on your phone\nNo gps on board\nReplacement bands are costly, but cool…\nSometimes the wake on raise feature can be annoying\nBattery life is a bit of an issue, but as you should not be on your phone 24/7 so shouldn’t you be on the watch\nCharging every night needs to be a habit or else the next day sucks\nWould be nice to stream some video and video calls\n\nI’ll tell you I’m a fan but I understood what this was getting into it. An add on to your iPhone experience. The ability to leave your phone in your purpose or pocket and do things that should only take a second from your wrist…\n\nThose of you addicted to using your phone constantly will find this concept alien, but those of you who wish to be cortious to others and not walk into walls will appreciate this very cool watch. Pricey?? I really did t think so… It’s not an iPad, but it is in iPod…. \n\nDon’t knock it until you’ve tried it and if you want full feature functionality, you will need way better processing and a larger screen no matter which way you slice it and that won’t make a very compact wearable gadget. \n\nAs far as waterproof, I’ve had zero issues in rain, washing hands, are general wet environments. Even went to the gym and forgot it was on my wrist and went into a hot tub for half an hour before I realized. Not one single issue. I’ve since swam in my pool with it and still no issues. Would I go diving with it on, no!! Why would I need to to?? I would use a watch that has diving features on its face and this one doesn’t not. Would a sail with it on? You bet! With Moe fear of falling in the drink. That’s already more than you can do in the water with your iPhone… \n\nThink about what this is and why your getting into it… The phone still has its place as do the iPads and iPods of the world, and they make calls the very same way the watch does… So maybe try having an open mind or better yet, get one yourself and take it for a drive, kick the tires and open her up, I’m certain the thing will impress you on some level… My Rolex is jealous of my Apple Watch everyday… Why? ‘Cause it tells time better and let’s me see my text messages for a fraction of the cost of it… Yes it’s more than a timex watch but it’s less than a movado watch… About $600 less… All in, mine cost about $400 new from the Apple Store. It’s actually the second cheapest watch I own, my Buliva Accutron being a $300 watch and once again, it’s not a smart watch….\n\nSo it’s price point is very reasonable.\n\nAll I can say is give it a try, your definately going to get a very accurate time piece that does some pretty neat things dealing with your phone, that’s for sure but you also might get a really nice piece of tech that will allow you to keep your phone in your pants while still doing a multiple amount of tasks right from your wrist.\n\nIt’s not for everyone, and with any idea some people just won’t ever get the concept but for those of you who do, you really won’t regret it.\n

  25. So many people complain about this issue. It is water resistant, but who the fuck pays 600-1500 (2nd class watches) for a watch that is vulnerable to water? Every aspect of the 2nd class watches in terms of build is good, you could take a rock to it, destroy the watch while the screen stays in tact. But no waterproof? Too much novelty and not enough practicality.

  26. A list made by someone that doesn’t have the watch, I would say, nor put much thought into it. Android capability? A

  27. The ONLY problem I had with the Apple Watch (and the reason I returned mine) was that the speaker wasn’t loud enough. I don’t make a habit of talking on speaker phone in public, but I am at stay at home mom of a toddler and an infant and it would have been so nice to be able to answer the phone on my wrist while at home chasing a toddler or changing diapers. I tried several times but I couldn’t continue with what I was doing. I had to stop and hold my wrist up to my ear to hear which defeats the purpose.

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