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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
54,972
17,356


The Apple Watch Series 7 models lack a diagnostic port under the band, which means Apple has to use another means to troubleshoot and restore Apple Watches that come in for repair.

apple-watch-dock-1.jpg

Apple Watch Series 7 models are equipped with a module that enables 60.5GHz wireless data transfer as we discovered in FCC documents in September, with that data transfer capability designed to be used with a proprietary magnetic dock.

The dock was mentioned in one of the FCC filings, but we didn't have a clear visual of it until now. Brazilian regulatory agency Anatel has approved the Apple Watch Series 7 models and provided photos of the dock that Apple is using internally, with the information shared by Brazilian site MacMagazine.

The Apple Watch Series 7 dock is clearly designed for diagnostics, and it has a two piece construction. An Apple Watch charging puck fits into the bottom piece, and then a second piece housing the Apple Watch itself fits over that and aligns with bolts.

apple-watch-dock-2.jpg

Prior to the Apple Watch Series 7, Apple included a diagnostic port on Apple Watch models, with the port hidden under the band. It's not clear why Apple has shifted to wireless diagnostics, and it's also not known how fast the wireless data transfer is. It likely uses USB 2.0 with speeds up to 480Mb/s.

apple-watch-series-3-diagnostic-port.jpeg
The diagnostic port on Apple Watch Series 6 models and older​

There is no word on whether the wireless data module added to the Apple Watch Series 7 could ever have a consumer-facing application, but for now, it's for Apple's internal use only.

Article Link: Proprietary Dock Apple Uses to Wirelessly Troubleshoot Apple Watch Series 7 Surfaces in Regulatory Database
 

GrumpyMom

macrumors G4
Sep 11, 2014
10,274
15,202
That’s their problem. As long as they have figured out a way to diagnose and repair the watches on their end, it’s all good. I never pay any attention to these ports anyway.

I want to wear the Apple Watch into water and have it withstand chinchilla dust baths, so I’m glad for the advances that help make that happen.

(I don’t actually have a chinchilla. But I have to empty my bagless vacuum canister at least twice a week and that’s about as dusty as being around a chinchilla taking a dust bath. Nobody wants to hear about my vacuum cleaner struggles. But I think we all can appreciate a chinchilla enjoying a good dust bath.) BA53FFAE-432E-466E-B7C1-82AEEBE17720.jpeg
 

CarlJ

Contributor
Feb 23, 2004
5,764
10,026
San Diego, CA, USA
What keeps catching my eye in that pic of the (now removed) diagnostic port is not the connector itself, but the little hole off to its left, with a grille behind it. It’s in a pretty protected position when a band is installed… barometric sensor? Equalizing case pressure? Or what?
 

beeftick

macrumors newbie
Sep 27, 2021
15
21
This is interesting. When I was an Apple tech, watches were diagnosed using their wireless software and scanning the boatload of sensors inside the device. If nothing of substance was found but the watch was still broken, the watch would be sent in to apple for repair. This doesn't look like a system to necessarily diagnose the watch, but rather repair components of the watch. They have similar looking trays for the iphones when you repair components. It helps keep the device stable as you repair.

However, this was a few years back so perhaps things changed.
 
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