It seems pretty clear that Apple will continue its yearly Apple Watch release cycle in 2021, with rumors pointing to the company releasing a replacement for the Apple Watch Series 6 later this year.
So how will Apple build on its best Apple Watch currently available? Here’s what we think we know so far.
AS per previous years, there’s no reason to assume the next Apple Watch will not be called ‘Series 7’. What is less clear is whether Apple will release a cheaper version to replace the Apple Watch SE like it did in 2020.
As noted, we should definitely expect a new flagship Apple Watch, but there are also rumors of a new more rugged Watch aimed at outdoor adventurers. From March:
A new report claims Apple is working on a rugged Apple Watch that could debut later this year.
Apple Inc. is considering launching an Apple Watch with a rugged casing aimed at athletes, hikers, and others who use the device in more extreme environments, according to people familiar with the matter. The Cupertino, California-based technology giant has internally discussed introducing such a Watch variation later in 2021 or 2022 at the earliest, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private matters.
This new ‘Explorer’ Apple Watch would feature a more rugged rubberized exterior.
A big new redesign is reportedly coming to Apple Watch this year, from serial Apple leaker Jon Prosser:
New renders, based on leaked information, claim to show what that new wearable will look like. And it’s a big departure.
As the images show, Apple Watch Series 7 looks set to do away with the curved sides we’ve seen since Apple Watch first arrived. They’ll be replaced with a squared-off design, says Jon Prosser, giving the wearable a much more boxy look.
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman also says the new Apple Watch will also feature thinner bezels and a display that’s closer to the screen. Ming-Chi Kuo has also reported a “significant” design change is coming in the second half of this year.
Apple debuted new Watch colors last year and might do the same again this year, Jon Prosser suggesting a new green colorway might make its debut.
Reports indicate the new Apple Watch could feature support for ultra-wideband capabilities for use with features like unlocking doors and hotel rooms as detailed in watchOS 8 and measuring blood sugar levels. Mark Gurman also reports that Apple is planning to add a new faster processor to the Watch and improved wireless connectivity.
Apple has usually gone with a fall release window for the Apple Watch, and rumors again point to a release in the second half of 2021. Apple debuted its new models in September last year, but this was in part due to delays to the iPhone 12. Reports indicate the iPhone 13 is back on track, so Apple might not want to detract too much from its next flagship.
The Apple Watch Series 6 debuted at $399, with the cheaper SE priced at $279, if Apple replaces both models we would expect the new version to be priced in a similar bracket. Apple could also choose to continue selling the Series 6 at a reduced rate, as it has done with previous models.