Apple has officially unveiled the latest iteration of its popular smartwatch during its Far Out live stream event with the all-new Apple Watch Series 8. This year’s model now features improved battery life, new temperature sensors, and includes a new crash detection feature as part of its onboard safety functions.
Though not thoroughly detailed during the presentation, the company says the Apple Watch Series 8 features a larger edge-to-edge display when compared to its predecessor, and is offered in 41 mm and 45 mm sizes. On that note, it features a familiar design as well, complete with a rotating crown that is situated on the right side of its screen. As with its predecessor, the device is offered with either aluminium or stainless steel bodies, together with an assortment of colours and watch straps.
And as with every new iteration of its wearable, Apple has also introduced several new watch faces on the Series 8 via the upcoming WatchOS 9 for added user personalisation. As an added bonus, the company revealed that all Nike watch faces will soon be available to all Apple Watch models that are supported by the new operating system – more specifically, from Series 4 and above.
Of course, aside from design and interface improvements, the Series 8 includes several newly introduced hardware and software-based features as well. First of which are the new built-in temperature sensors that are claimed to be able to track changes as slight as 0.1 degrees Celsius and are designed to check your temperature every five seconds. On top of helping you to determine whether you’re experiencing fevers or the sorts, Apple says the feature can also be used to provide more thorough insights for women’s health such as ovulation and menstruation tracking.
As mentioned earlier, joining the Fall Detection safety feature on the Apple Watch is the newly introduced Crash Detection function. This utilises the wearable’s improved accelerometer, gyroscope and barometer sensors, as well as its onboard GPS and microphone to determine whether the user is involved in a collision such as car crashes and so on. Much like Fall Detection, the device will check in with the user and dial emergency services if they are unresponsive after a 10-second countdown. Emergency responders will receive the user’s device location, which is also shared with the user’s emergency contacts.
Besides that, Apple says the Series 8 comes with an 18-hour battery life with all passive features turned on. Furthermore, its usage can be doubled up to 36 hours with the newly introduced Low Power Mode that’s included on WatchOS 9. Activating this mode will turn off the always-on display and auto-workout tracking, but you’ll still get activity tracking and crash detection. Additionally, this year’s iteration of the Apple Watch will also come with faster charging, though the company did not elaborate further regarding this.
For now, the Apple Watch Series 8 is slated to be available in the US starting 16 September onwards. Although no date has been determined just yet, the company’s latest smartwatch will be arriving to the local market in the near future, as confirmed by the company’s Malaysian website.
On that note, the device is listed at a starting price of RM 1,899 for the 41 mm aluminium version with GPS only, and maxes out at RM 3,699 for the 45 mm stainless steel edition. It’s also worth noting that the former case material is offered in either GPS only or GPS + Cellular configurations, while the latter is only available in GPS + Cellular.