Three years after the release, Apple Watch has finally been redesigned. It has a bigger screen in a similarly sized body while being lighter. It has a whole range of new health features, one of which is first ever in a wearable — ECG. Apple has figured out the two main use cases for Apple Watch: communication and health tracking and how they’re doubling down on both. Here are the 10 best Apple Watch Series 4 features that you should know about.
Best Apple Watch Series 4 Features
Let’s dive in:
- 1. Bigger Edge to Edge Screen
- 2. Haptic Feedback on Digital Crown
- 3. New Watch Faces and Complications
- 4. New S4 System on Chip
- 5. Louder Speakers
- 6. Irregular Heart Beat Detection
- 7. ECG
- 8. Fall Detection
- 9. New Gold Finish
- 10. Old Bands Are Still Supported
For the first time since the release, Apple Watch has been redesigned. While it still keeps the square face, the screen now pushes way towards the edge. You get an edge-to-edge display, with rounded corners that match the rounded corners of the body of the Apple Watch.
The Apple Watch sizes have changed as well. Now, you get two models: 40mm and 44mm. All this means that the new Apple Watch Series 4 has 35 percent more screen real estate compared to the Series 3. That’s a huge gain for a wristwatch. There’s such a size difference here that even the 40mm Series 4 comes with a larger screen than the 42mm Series 3 Watch (759 sq mm screen area vs 740 sq mm).
All this while the Apple Watch itself got thinner. The Series 4 stands at 10.7mm thickness while Series 3 was 11.4mm thick.
The Digital Crown has an entirely new mechanism. Now, when you turn it, it will feel like you’re using a real crown. Apple is using the haptic engine in the Apple Watch to give you the satisfying clicks of turning a crown using haptic feedback.
Apple has redesigned the entire watchOS to make use of the new screen. Because you can fit in a lot more data in the new bigger screen, you can now have complications which show more data visually.
Apple has a new watch face called Infographic which can show up to 8 complications on the screen! And to show off the new display, there are three dynamic watch faces: Fire, Water, and Vapor. Plus, the Breathe app gets its own watch face as well.
Apple has redesigned the Modular watch face and how you can see a lot more information on complications.
Series 4 is powered by the new S4 System on Chip. It’s a new dual-core 64-bit system which is twice as fast as the Series 4. The new chip is choke full of sensors. The next generation accelerometer and gyroscope have twice the dynamic range and can process motion data up to 8 times faster. It seems like a small change but it lets the Series 4 do new things that weren’t possible before.
Apple has moved the microphone to the other side, in between the Digital Crown and the Side button. The left side is just the speaker now. And it is twice as loud. This should really help when you’re talking to Siri or talking on the phone.
One of the things that are possible thanks to the powerful new S4 chip is irregular heartbeat detection. The Apple Watch can now detect and notify you when you have an irregular heartbeat. Series 4 can even recognize atrial fibrillation heart rhythm. All the data is stored in Health app and you can generate a PDF from the app to share with your doctor.
This is a first for any consumer wearable. Apple Watch can now run Electrocardiogram, or ECG, on the Apple Watch itself. Both the Digital Crown and the back plate have electrodes in them. You simply rest your finger on the Digital Crown for 30 seconds and the Apple Watch converts your heart beats into data that can be parsed using the S4 chip.
The feature will be available via a new ECG app later in the year. The feature has been approved by FDA as well.
Another awesome use of the improved sensors? Apple Watch can now detect when you’ve taken a fall. And if you’ve not moved for a minute after the fall, it can automatically call Emergency Services and share your location with the proper authorities using the SOS feature.
Other than the regular Space Grey and Silver colors, the Series 4 Apple Watch also comes in a gorgeous new Gold option in the aluminum finish. The Gold color looks similar to the finish on the iPhone Xs.
Yes, all the Watch bands you’ve collected over the past couple of years will still work with Apple Watch Series 4.
Pricing and Availability
The Apple Watch Series 4 is more expensive than Series 3 was at launch. The 40mm GPS version costs $399 while the 44mm version is $429. If you’re getting the cellular model, the 40mm version will set you back by $499 and the 44mm will be $529. Apple Watch is also available in Nike+ and Hermes versions, though they won’t start shipping until October.
Pre-orders for Apple Watch Series 4 begin on 14th September and it will start shipping on September 21st. Apple has dropped the price of Series 3 Apple Watch down to $279.
Apple Watch Series 4 runs watchOS 5. The update is packed with new health tracking and communication features. You can talk to Siri without pressing the Digital Crown, you can track workouts like Yoga and even track your average pace when running. There’s a new Walkie-Talkie app as well. Check out our coverage of the new OS here.
Which Apple Watch Are You Buying?
Are the new features like the larger screen and ECG enough for you to upgrade to Series 4? If you’ve got a Series 1, the Series 4 makes for a huge upgrade. Will you be buying the Series 4 Apple Watch? Share with us in the comments below.