Apple (AAPL) announced its newest version of the Apple Watch at its iPhone event on Tuesday including a new always-on display, and new styles. Available for order today and hitting stores on Sept. 20, the Apple Watch Series 5 starts at $399.
More interesting is Apple’s decision to keep the Apple Watch Series 3 in its line-up. That model is now just $199, putting every other smartwatch maker on notice for pricing.
Other smartwatches have had always-on displays, but Apple hasn’t included the feature due to concerns over battery life. To deal with that, Apple has announced a new display with a refresh rate that can be reduced to 1 frame per second to save on power.
A power management integrated circuit and ambient light sensor also help the watch save on energy, ensuring you get the same battery life out of the Series 5 as you do the Series 4.
Stan Ng presents the new Apple Watch at an Apple event at their headquarters in Cupertino, California, U.S. September 10, 2019. REUTERS/Stephen Lam
When the always-on display is running, you’ll still be able to see the time and your various complications, though they’ll look dimmer than usual. Raise or tap your wrist and the watch’s display will increase to full brightness.
Apple says the watch faces and Workouts app have been specifically tuned for the always-on display. The added benefit of that always-on display? You can see your notifications in a work setting without tapping your screen or raising your wrist so you won’t seem rude. There’s also a built-in compass.
As far as the Apple Watch hardware, Apple hasn’t changed much outside of two new case options: titanium and ceramic. Beyond that, you can expect the same 40mm and 44mm watch bodies.