Compatible with Apple Watch 8: Many New Sensors

Compatible with Apple Watch 8: Many New Sensors

This story is part of Focal Point iPhone 2022CNET’s collection of news, tips and advice about Apple’s most popular products.

Apple announced Apple Watch Series 8 during the company annual event for fall products Wednesday. Tea GPS version starts at $399 (£419, AU$629), while the mobile version starts at $499. It will be available on September 16 and orders start immediately. Apple also announced rugged Apple Watch Ultrawhich starting at $799and the new cheaper version Apple Watch SEstarting at $249 and pre-order now. Here it is everything Apple announced at its September 7 event.

The most significant change is the addition of a temperature sensor, marking the first time Apple has added a new health sensor to its smartwatch since the Series 6 arrived with blood oxygen saturation measurements in 2020. The new group of Apple Watches, which includes the Series. 8 along with the new SE and Ultra models, is also the first to include car crash detection, further emphasizing Apple’s emphasis on wellness and safety. The Apple Watch Ultra is a new version of the Apple Watch aimed at athletes, while the SE is a refreshed version of Apple’s affordable smartwatch.

Temperature sensing and car accident detection

The temperature sensor of the Apple Watch Series 8 is the biggest improvement in this year’s watch. There are actually two sensors, one under the display and the other on the back, close to the skin. This should improve accuracy by helping the watch distinguish between your wrist temperature and other factors affecting the temperature in your environment. The watch takes your wrist temperature throughout the night every five seconds and tracks it in the Apple Health app.

Since this is a silent read that happens once, I wasn’t able to test it in Apple’s showroom. But I got to see how this information will be presented in the Health program. The app will show changes in your previous temperature in a chart within the app, along with context about what the data means. The company says changes in your baseline temperature can be a sign of exercise, jet lag or illness. There is also a new wrist temperature tile in the overview section of the Health app where you can tap this data.

The Apple Health app will display data from the Series 8’s temperature readings.

Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

Apple is making the temperature sensor more important for monitoring women’s health. Temperature sensors allow the Series 8 to provide a later ovulation estimate and improved period prediction.

The Apple Watch is also getting a new safety feature this year: car crash detection. If the watch detects a malfunction, it will notify emergency services and the wearer’s emergency contacts if the wearer is unresponsive for 10 seconds. This is only available in Series 8, the new SE and Apple Watch Ultra models because it uses an improved gyroscope and accelerometer.

Apple/Screenshot by Sarah Lord/CNET

Go straight to the source for your Apple Watch Series 8 pre-order and get three months of Apple Fitness Plus.

Low power mode

Low Power Mode information displayed on the Apple Watch Series 8.

Low Power Mode information displayed on the Apple Watch Series 8.

Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

Another important addition is the Apple Watch’s low power mode, which Apple says should extend battery life by up to 36 hours for the Series 8. The new low power mode disables features such as the always-on display and exercise detection. automatically to save time performance. extend battery life. Although Apple only announced the feature today, it will also be available for Series 4 and above. Otherwise, the battery life of the Apple Watch is generally about 18 hours.

The overall design of the Apple Watch appears to have remained unchanged this year. The Series 8’s size and overall shape remain the same, and it will be available in midnight, starlight, silver and Product Red with an aluminum shell. The stainless steel version, which I got to test my time with, will come in silver, graphite and gold.

Apple Watch Series 8 stainless steel in gold worn on the wrist

Apple Watch Series 8 stainless steel in gold.

Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

Many of the most important changes to the Apple Watch Series 8, such as temperature sensing and low-power mode, are under-the-hood changes rather than cosmetic improvements. We’ll need to spend more time with the 8 Series to find out how much these additions affect overall usability. But based on what we know so far, the Series 8 looks like another step towards the Apple Watch becoming a more complete health device.

Apple is leading the world smart watch market with 29.3% of shipments in the second quarter of 2022, according to Coping Research. Samsung follows in second place with 9.2% of worldwide smartwatch shipments during the period. Still, Apple faces increased competition. Although Samsung trails Apple in terms of shipments, Samsung saw 40% year-over-year growth, compared to Apple’s 8% growth, according to Counterpoint data.

In August, Samsung launched Galaxy Watch 5 and Galaxy Watch 5 Pro. Meanwhile, Google is expected to release its first smart watch, the PixelWatch, this fall. Google hasn’t revealed many details yet, but it seems to be positioning the Pixel Watch as a high-end smartwatch similar to the Apple Watch.

Although iPhone is Apple’s biggest money maker, products like the Apple Watch are an important part of the company’s business. The wearables, home and accessories division, which includes products like the Apple Watch and AirPods, is the company’s third-largest business after iPhone and digital services. Apple said in quarterly earnings call in April that its wearables business is now the equivalent of a Fortune 100 company.

Read more: The Best Smartwatches for 2022