The Apple Watch Series 8 doesn’t offer much more than the Apple Watch 7 did, but there are some nice new features including ovulation detection and car crash detection. These new health and safety features join new colors and new bands. Prices start at $399/£419 for the GPS model and $499/£529 for cellular. Read on to find out what you need to know as we answer all your questions about the new Apple Watch for 2022.
The new Apple Watch Series 8 comes as part of a set: Apple has also launched a new 2022 Apple Watch SE and the Apple Watch Ultra. Read more in our dedicated articles. If you are trying to choose the best Apple Watch for you read: Best Apple Watch: Which Apple Watch to buy
Release date: When will the Apple Watch Series 8 launch?
The Apple Watch Series 8 will be available to pre-order today (September 7, 2022) and will start shipping on Friday, September 16.
Pricing: How much does the Apple Watch Series 8 cost
The Apple Watch Series 8 will cost from $399/£419 for the GPS model and $499/£529 for the cellular model. Prices will increase depending on the case material chosen (aluminium or Stainless Steel), straps chosen, and whether you opt for the 41mm or 45mm model. The 45m option is $30/$30 more.
- If you choose a 41mm Watch with Solo Loop, Sport Loop options you’ll pay $399. The
- The Braided Solo Loop raises the prices to $449 for the 41mm watch
- Sports Loop to $699 for the 41mm watch
- If you choose a 41mm Watch with Leather Link or Milanese Loop it costs $749
- There are also (much) more expensive options from Hermès.
The main difference this year is that there are only two type case materials to choose from, where in previous years you could have increased the price further by choosing a Titanium case. This year that is reserved for the Apple Watch Ultra.
The Apple Watch Series 7 cost $399/£369/AU$599 for the 41mm version and US$429/£399/AU$649 for the larger 45mm model. It is no longer on sale. There was previously a cheaper Apple Watch – the Apple Watch Series 3 (which cost $199/£179/AU$299 for the 38mm and $229/£209/AU$349 for the 42mm) – but Apple has discontinued that model as expected – because it is not going to be able to run the latest software.
If you want to get a bargain, then check out best Apple Watch deals guide, as it’s updated regularly with all the latest discounts on the whole range.
What’s new? Apple Watch 8 features and specs
Want to know how the Apple Watch Series 8 compares to the last generation and other new models? Here’s what you need to know about the new features, including: The new Apple Watch Series 8 will detect body temperature and car crashes.
If you were hoping for a brand new design be prepared to be disappointed. The screen size is the same as before (if you want a bigger screen you need to look to the Apple Watch Ultra).
There are new colours on offer, but the cases are only available in Aluminium or Stainless Steel – in the past you could choose a Titanium option too, but this is reserved for the Apple Watch Ultra.
The case options include:
- Aluminium in Midnight, Starlight, Silver and Product RED
- Stainless Steel in Gold, Graphite, Silver, Space Black.
Last year’s Apple Watch 7 came in three finishes: Aluminium, Stainless Steel and Titanium. Aluminium offered Midnight, Starlight, Green, Blue and Red colors (no green or blue for the Series 8). Stainless Steel offered graphite, Silver and Gold (so there is a new Space Gray version for 2022). And Titanium came in Space Black and Titanium.
The new Apple Watch 8 does feature new sensors, but there’s not much else that’s different in terms of the specs.
Apple describes the chip as a Dual-core S8 SiP on it’s website, however, it’s not thought that the S8 offers much of an improvement on the S7 chip used in the Apple Watch 7. We base this conclusion on the fact that while Apple claims a 20% faster performance than the older Apple Watch SE, it makes no such claim in comparison to the Watch 7.
Apple Watch Series 8 will offer a low power mode to extend battery life. This isn’t a feature unique to the Apple Watch 8 though – it will also be available on Apple Watch 4 and later as long as they are running WatchOS 9
Apple says that it has two main focuses with this watch: health and safety. These are the headline features.
Ovulation tracking – the Apple Watch 8 will be able to track temperature changes while you sleep in order to notify women if they have ovulated. This feature is designed to help women who are trying to get pregnant manage that process and become aware of any potential issues with their cycle. Obviously it shouldn’t be used for Family Planning, although Apple didn’t explicitly say so.
Crash Detection – Apple Watch Series 8 will offer crash detection. The accelerometer will be used to detect if there has been an impact. If it detects that you have been in a severe car crash it will alert emergency services, providing location information, and notify your loved ones if you have added them as emergency contacts.
Sleep Stages – should give users a better understanding of their sleep.b It will show you how much time you were in REM, core and deep sleep, and will indicate if you woke up.
Like the previous generation Apple Watch 7, the Apple Watch is considered Swimproof, offers the ECG app so you can take an electrocardiogram, and will provide heart rate notifications, measure your blood oxygen, fall detection, and an always on display.
Watch the September 7 event
If you missed the unveiling here’s the Apple live stream.
Here’s what we had heard could be coming. See what actually transpired and what might be coming next time round.
Even if the standard Apple Watch Series 8 doesn’t get a bigger screen we may still see improvements to the screen technology. In mid-2021, Mark Gurman reported that the Series 7 watch would sport “updated screen technology” while 91mobiles added Apple may be using “a new lamination technique that is expected to bring the panel closer to the front cover.” While we did get thinner bezels and a harder coating, the Apple Watch Series 7 appears to use the same overall display tech as the prior models. So we’ll be keeping an eye out for a new screen process in the 2022 flagship model.
It’s possible that the Apple Watch could adopt Mini-LED panels. It could be too soon in terms of cost and production, but this would be a significant new feature if it did come to fruition.
New color options
This is a perennial design rumor, because it’s easy for pundits to imagine their favourite device in a different color. The issue for Apple is deciding which color finishes will actually sell.
So remain sceptical when we show you some concept illustrations posted on Instagram by the account Appledsign. These show the Apple Watch Series 7 ‘as it could have been’ – with a different and bolder set of colours – and look pretty great. Whether Apple will take heed in time for the launch of the Series 8 is a different matter.
Along with new colors for the Watch we can expect to see new Apple Watch bands, which are likely to support all recent models of Apple Watch. The Series 7 watch delivered a new round of colors, but didn’t introduce any new band styles.
Health and fitness features
While the Apple Watch Series 7 has identical health features and sensors to the Series 6, the next model could bring huge advancements. A report byThe Telegraphin May 2021 divulged that Apple is a customer of a company that specializes in next-gen health sensors, fuelingspeculationthat future watches will have blood pressure, glucose, and alcohol level monitoring. However, Bloombergreported in Aprilthat while Apple is working on such functionality, it might not be ready until 2024 at the earliest.
One new feature that does seem to be making its way to the next generation Apple Watch though is a temperature tacker – although rather than take the wearers temperature, it sounds like it’s purpose will be to alert them to possible fever or for fertility tracking.
Apparently the temperature sensor was originally planned for the Series 7 watch, but according to Ming-Chi Kyo it failed Apple’s tests. Bloomberg reported in June 2021 that Apple had pushed the feature back until at least 2022.
In January, Apple stopped selling the Beddit sleep tracker, a device that measures sleep time, heart rate, breathing, snoring, bedroom temperature, and humidity. Apple acquired Beddit in 2017, and it’s been rumored that it will be bringing much of its advanced sleep-tracking features to the Apple Watch Series 8.
Apple has decidedly placed the Watch at the centre of its healthy-lifestyle world and if rumors are to be believed then we may finally see the arrival of a blood sugar sensor in the Apple Watch Series 8. Apple has already submitted patents for measuring blood glucose including ones with non-invasive tetrahertz (THz) electromagnetic radiation, which would no doubt be a real blessing for diabetics who currently need to use needles multiple times a day.
However, this is a feature that may not make it into the Series 8. Apparently noninvasive blood sugar monitoring is years away.
As per an April 12 report, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman believes that watchOS 9 will bring an enhanced atrial fibrillation feature.
According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple is working on blood pressure (hypertension) features for the Apple Watch, but the feature will now be ready for several years.
The Apple Watch Series 7 tech specs featured an S7 system-in-package, but numerous reports suggest that this processor was new in name only. For all intents and purposes the S7 chip is the same as the S6 chip. This is despite rumours that Apple was working on a brand new processor for the Apple Watch Series 7. Back in June, a DigiTimes report claimed that Apple was going to use a new double-sided chip packaging process to further shrink the size of the S7 chip, which could allow room for more battery or other components, or to shrink the overall thickness of the watch. A follow-up report from the Economic Daily news out of China suggested that Apple was freeing up space to make room for a larger capacity battery.
These rumored features never came to fruition. What of the S8 chip? Unfortunately it sounds like the A8 will be no better than the A7. Mark Gurman wrote in July that: “All of the new Apple Watches will use an S8 processor with similar performance to the S7 chip in the Apple Watch Series 7, which was on par with the S6 in the Apple Watch Series 6 from two years ago.”
Improved battery life
Compared to some other smartwatches, the Apple Watch can be a little wanting in the battery-life stakes. If Apple introduces a larger screened Apple Watch then it is likely to be able to take advantage of a more capacious battery in that model. Whether this will be a feature reserved for the rumored sports edition of the Apple Watch remains to be seen. See ‘Extreme’ Apple Watch to bring a bigger screen, longer battery life, metal case.
Even without a bigger Apple Watch we could see better battery life. Gurman has reported that a new low-power mode is due to arrive in watchOS 9. This new power saving mode will work like on iOS and iPadOS, where you can still use basic functions and apps, but with lower speed and some background functions turned off. The feature wasn’t announced at WWDC though.
Bloomberg previously reported that the Series 7 watch could bring updated ultra-wideband functionality that didn’t arrive. Apple first introduced the ultra-wideband U1 chip with the Apple Watch Series 6 and since has expanded the tech’s usefulness with AirTag trackers and digital keys in Wallet. It’s not clear how Apple would upgrade the tech in the Apple Watch Series 7, but it will likely mean a U2 chip.
While rumors that the iPhone 13 could receive satellite communications for emergency purposes never proved true, something similar may be going on for the Apple Watch, according to information from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman (via an April Power On newsletter).
Gurman revealed that satellite company Globalstar had bought 17 new satellites to implement a “satellite service” for a potential customer. This customer may be Apple, says Gurman, and the satellite function might arrive this fall (although it may also be delayed until 2023).
If you can’t wait for the arrival of the Apple Watch Series 8 (2022) then be sure to take a look at our Apple Watch buying guide to ensure you pick up the model that’s best for you.
And don’t pay over the odds! To find the lowest possible prices, check our in-depth guide to the best Apple Watch deals.