This story is part of iPhone 2022 focal pointCNET’s collection of news, tips and advice on Apple’s most popular product.

Equipped with a blood oxygen monitor, the ability to record an ECG from your wrist and multiple exercise logging options, Apple Watch Series 7 is already a capable health tracker. But Apple could expand its wellness ambitions by adding a temperature sensor to the Series 8, according to Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal. Apple may even be preparing a Pro version of Apple Watch Series 8 as well as with a possible debut in Apple’s September 7 event.

However, I am much more excited about the idea of ​​a new one Apple Watch SEwhich Bloomberg says it could arrive in 2022. Apple’s simpler, cheaper device has everything most people want in a smartwatch, from tracking workouts to enabling Apple Pay transactions and displaying iPhone alerts.

Apple’s newer wellness features are a step forward in monitoring users’ health, and they show promise. There are also many stories that show The Apple Watch has helped save lives. But on Apple Watch Series 6 and Series 7 already provides more information than I personally know what to do with. Series 8 with even more health metrics may be too complicated for some people.

That’s why I’m more interested to see what’s next for Apple’s more wallet-friendly option. The current Apple Watch SE debuted in 2020, and it’s time for an update.

Read more: What Google’s Pixel Watch can learn from its phones

The Apple Watch SE has most of the best features of the Series 7

399 dollars Apple Watch Series 7compared to the $279 SE, is packed with additional health features and other refinements, such as blood oxygen readings, the ability to take an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) from your wrist, a larger screen, and faster charging.

These qualities make the Series 7 a more comprehensive health tracker, a better communication tool, and a more useful sleep tracker. The Series 7’s larger screen means it can accommodate a full QWERTY keyboard for texting, and faster charging makes it easy to charge your watch after a night of sleep tracking.

The Series 8 is expected to follow a similar trajectory and may include a skin temperature sensor for fertility planning and potentially other applications, according to Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal.

These benefits may not be necessary for everyone, which is why SE is more focused. Those who just want to close their activity rings and make sure they don’t miss a text while away from their phone can probably do without blood oxygen readings, bigger screen and faster loading. The Apple Watch Series 7 and its predecessor feel aimed at those who want to keep a closer eye on their well-being, especially when it comes to heart health.

The Apple Watch SE has many of Apple’s top health and safety features, although it’s not as advanced as its more expensive siblings. While you can’t take an EKG from your wrist using the SE, Apple’s cheaper Watch can still deliver high and low heart rate notifications, spot irregular heart rhythms, detect hard falls and provide access to emergency services. If you’re buying a watch for an elderly family member who might be prone to falling, this might be enough.

Newer metrics like blood oxygen readings don’t always feel useful. Although Apple says measurements from Apple Watch blood oxygen application can provide you with “insight into your overall health”, I’m not sure what to make of these readings. Since the Apple Watch isn’t intended for medical use, it’s not clear if I should be concerned if my readings are too low.

That doesn’t mean it doesn’t have potential. When The 6 Series was introduced in 2020, Apple announced plans to work with researchers on three separate health studies to study how blood oxygen readings and other metrics can help manage asthma and heart failure in addition to detecting respiratory conditions like COVID-19. But for now, the blood oxygen reader on the Series 6 and 7 doesn’t feel necessary. Similarly, other wearables such as those from Garmin, Fitbit and Samsung offer blood oxygen readings that rely on the user to interpret them.

While I appreciate the SE’s simpler approach to health tools, I wish Apple would add at least one feature that’s currently exclusive to more expensive models: an always-on display. New Apple watches starting with Series 5 and later (except SE) can keep their screens on even when the watch is inactive. This makes the Apple Watch better at its most basic job of telling the time.

It might not seem like a big deal, but I appreciate being able to look down at my time and activity progress on the Series 7 without having to move my wrist or touch the watch like you do on the SE. It’s not as exciting or significant as the health-related updates in the long run, but it’s convenient for everyday use and I hope to see it on the next Apple Watch SE.

Read more: Smart watches have been measuring blood oxygen for years. But is it useful?

The Apple Watch has matured, just like the iPhone

The Apple Watch has evolved to the point where yearly upgrades aren’t always a big step forward, like iPhone. The Apple Watch Series 7, for example, felt like a more advanced version of the Series 6. Aside from the blood oxygen measurements, the Series 6 didn’t feel all that different from the Series 5 either.

This makes the case for cheaper models like the Apple Watch SE all the more compelling, especially as WatchOS updates bring new features to older models. WatchOS 9which launches this fall, will bring more detailed sleep tracking, a new medication logging app, new watch faces and other updates to the Apple Watch Series 4 and later.

The The Apple Watch SE holds its own in terms of performance and feels just as responsive as the latest model when running the same software. You don’t need the most expensive or the latest version to get the full experience, which is why Apple has kept the Series 3 in its lineup for so long.

But on Apple Watch Series 3 will not support WatchOS 9 and it has become difficult to update as it doesn’t have much internal memory. That being said, it looks like the Apple Watch Series 3’s days are numbered, an analyst predicts Ming-Chi Kuo made back in March. It also makes the Apple Watch SE that much more important, as it will likely replace the Series 3 as the most affordable Apple Watch option.

Overall, the current SE provides the right middle ground between the Series 3 and Series 7. As Apple’s high-end watches have evolved into more sophisticated health trackers, the SE increasingly feels like the better option for everyday users with tighter budgets. Now that the Apple Watch SE is almost two years old, I’m ready for a new one.



https://www.cnet.com/tech/mobile/apple-watch-se-rumored-update-could-be-the-most-exciting-apple-watch-for-2022/#ftag=CADf328eec

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