On Wednesday, Apple revealed the new Apple Watch Series 4 to the world. This monumental unveiling was made at their 2018 September launch event in their Apple Park headquarters. This watch is sure to continue Apple’s dominance in the industry. Market Researcher IDC estimates that half of the 43.5 million smartwatches that ship this year will come from Apple.
Options, Pricing & Sale Date
The new Apple Watch Series 4 will have a 40mm & 44mm option and come in two different models. The Watch will retail at $399 for the basic model and $499 for the cellular LTE model. They will also be available in 3 colors for both the aluminum finish and stainless steel finish. The aluminum finish will come in silver, gold and space gray while the stainless steel version will come in polished black, space black and gold. Preorders will start tomorrow September 14th and begin to ship on September 21st.
The most eye-catching upgrade to the smartwatch is the larger, edge-to-edge screen. Just by looking at the screen you can tell that it is noticeably less cramped than previous models. According to Apple, the screen is a full 30% larger. With the increase in screen size, users will be able to display up to 8 shortcuts on the screen for apps. This will allow them to access their most used programs without taking the time to shuffle through the menus. The Watch also encompasses a slimmer/lighter design.
A better-positioned microphone and speakers that are 50% louder will not only enhance the quality of phone calls but also the consumer’s interaction with Siri. This will also improve a users capabilities on Apple’s new walkie-talkie app. The app has been gaining traction as of late and allows Apple smartwatch owners to talk with each other.
The Series 4 is now equipped with an all-new S4 dual-core 64-bit CPU which Apple claims will make the watch run twice as fast as its predecessor. Apple’s Digital Crown has also been improved to provide haptic feedback. This allows users to feel the menus as they scroll. Another subtle change comes on the backside of the watch. The back of the watch is now transparent to radio waves, which means that it will get even more reliable cellular service.
New Health Features
Apple’s two new health features were arguably the biggest hit with the crowd at yesterdays launch. With EKG capabilities and a fall detection feature, the Series 4 has become an overall better health device.
The FDA-approved electrocardiogram records the electrical activity of your heart through a sensor on the back of the watch. This sensor can detect when a heart rate is lower than normal and also detect arterial fibrillation. To take an ECG, the user simply opens up the ECG app and presses their finger to the Digital Crown.
The Fall Detection Feature (Think Life Alert’s “I’ve fallen and can’t get up” ads) can sense when a fall occurs. The watch will then wait 1 minute, and if there is no response, the watch automatically calls 911 and sends messages to the users emergency contacts. Apple insists that the improved accelerometer won’t be tricked and can easily differentiate a fall from other awkward movements. This feature will be “on” by default for anyone over 65 but will need to be turned on manually for anyone under that age.
The EKG and Fall Detection features have the potential to introduce an all-new, older target audience to the smartwatch mix, further boosting Apple’s already massive market share.
Another bit of good news is that the new Series 4 will be fully compatible with older bands. This means consumers won’t have to restock on bands just because they upgrade their smartwatch. To a lot of peoples dismay, one of the features that did not change was the battery life. It will remain at 18 hours, but Apple did increase the outdoor workout time to a full 6 hours.