Apple has just officially announced the next generation of the Apple Watch, the Apple Watch Series 5. The latest model is very similar to last year’s Series 4, with a similar design and size. The big new feature this year is an always-on display option so you can see the time without having to move your wrist.
Apple’s Stan Ng took to the stage to explain that the Watch now uses an LTPO (Low Temperature Polysilicone and Oxide) Retina Display. LTPO can, essentially, vary the display’s refresh rate, so that if there’s no need to update the screen, it doesn’t, thus saving power. It’ll still dim the screen when your wrist isn’t raised, but now it’s possible to check the time without people noticing.
Apple is embarking on a trio of medical studies to examine how it can better understand other problems. That includes a hearing study, based on tracking ambient noise and a menstrual cycle study to determine how periods can affect the diagnosis of other conditions. Finally, a heart and movement study will further investigate how to detect, and prevent, heart problems, much like its first efforts in this space.
Other new features include a built-in compass and emergency calling for international countries. Interestingly, Apple did not announce first-party sleep tracking with the new model, which was something that was expected based on leaks and rumors.
Pricing for the Series 5 starts at $399 for GPS model and $499 for the cellular connected version. It’s available for order starting today and will be in stores starting on September 20th. Apple is also permanently dropping the price of the Series 3 to $199, matching the lowest sale price on that model we’ve seen. Last year’s Series 4 model has been dropped from the lineup.