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What a New Design Could Mean for Apple Watch Series 4

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The Apple Watch Series 4 expected this fall will feature a new design and a display that's 15 percent larger, according to the latest reports from respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Additional details have yet to emerge, but the Series 4 could mark the first design change introduced in the Apple Watch since its debut three years ago.

Kuo expects the two new Apple Watch models will measure 1.57 inches (39.9mm) and 1.78 inches (45.2mm), compared to the current 38mm and 42mm Apple Watch sizes. Rumors remain unclear on whether the casings themselves will be larger or if a reduction in bezel size will allow for larger OLED displays, but that hasn't stopped designers from sharing their own Series 4 concepts.

Rumored Apple Watch Series 4 design (left) alongside Series 3 (right)

Venya Geskin created the above mockups envisioning what a larger display could look like on a new Apple Watch while retaining the existing physical dimensions. In this design, the Series 4 screen adopts rounded corners to align with the reduced bezels and maximize the display area, similar to the display on the iPhone X.

Developer Ryan Jones calculates that the larger screens could provide a 35 and 38 percent larger display area for the 38mm and 42mm models, respectively. Such a change would significantly enhance user interaction with the Force Touch display, allowing for bigger clock faces and virtual buttons, and more space for viewing text, equating to less scrolling. In addition, watchOS 5 promises to bring rich HTML content to Apple Watch devices, so a larger screen would enhance the experience of navigating websites and interacting with them.

According to separate industry sources, there's an outside chance that the upcoming Apple Watch models could use micro-LED screens, which have the potential to be thinner and lighter, with improved color gamut, increased brightness, and support for higher resolutions. If micro-LED is adopted this year, it could potentially free up space for other hardware improvements.

Here's exact to-scale drawings of Apple Watch Series 4 based on the rumors. Note the 38mm screen will be bigger than the current 42mm screen! 😱 pic.twitter.com/lh9VqPMQ7g - Ryan Jones (@rjonesy) July 11, 2018

Kuo believes the next Apple Watch will feature improved health monitoring capabilities, including improved heart rate features. The analyst doesn't explain whether these improvements would be based on software or hardware, but some combination of the two is one possibility.

The heart rate sensor in the current Apple Watch uses rapidly flashing green LED lights paired with light-sensitive photodiodes to continuously monitor heart rate during workouts and Breathe sessions. However, the device switches to infrared light to measure heart rate in the background at intervals that vary, depending on your activity level.


Unlike some smartwatches, currently it's not possible to configure Apple Watch to monitor your heart rate continuously all of the time. Such a feature in the Series 4 would be a welcome addition, but whether it could be battery-efficient without adopting a different sensor array than the current one is unclear.

That said, Kuo also believes that the Apple Watch will feature a higher-capacity battery for better battery life. The adoption of solid state buttons that don't physically click but instead use a Taptic Engine to provide haptic feedback to users could also potentially provide extra room for a larger battery.

Another possibility Apple is said to be testing is an EKG feature that records the electrical activity of the heart using two fingers on either side of the Apple Watch. This would detect electrical changes in the skin caused by the rhythm of the heartbeat - and potentially identify any irregularities.

Concept design by Benjamin Geskin

Whatever comes with Apple Watch Series 4, we should know for certain in just a couple of months. Apple is expected to announce the device at its annual September event, which is typically held during the first or second week of September. What changes are you hoping for in the new Apple Watch? Let us know in the comments below.

Article Link: What a New Design Could Mean for Apple Watch Series 4
 

alexgowers

macrumors 65816
Jun 3, 2012
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Some nice information there and great improvements, now can Apple update its computer line up? I mean why are we even on a series 4 of a watch, it can’t seriously be that important to update at this point. I think I’m done holding out for Apple these days.
 
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Relentless Power

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Jul 12, 2016
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What changes are you hoping for in the new Apple Watch? Let us know in the comments below.​

If I had to guess, I think it will be a reduction of the bezels, which will have Apple explaining during the Keynote that it’s a ‘larger display’ in a very similar form factor.

I would also welcome the idea of having haptic style buttons on the side of the watch, which will also help improve the water resistance further.

Having a ‘live steps’ complication would be a nice addition.

I doubt we will see this for the Series 4, but glucose monitoring would be beneficial.
 
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FilipeTeixeira

macrumors regular
Mar 10, 2013
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What I still don't get is the need of having an iPhone to have an apple watch. An iPad or a Macbook should be more than enough to set up the basic things. I can imagine that most people doing outdoor sports, aren't carrying around powerbanks just to be able to use their iPhone and posteriorly their apple watch.
Also at least a 5 day battery would be awesome.
 
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matrix07

macrumors 603
Jun 24, 2010
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So random question. The screen on the watch is in portrait mode when you bend you arm up to look at it. Wouldn't it be better in landscape orientation ??

Sincere question, you don’t think Apple has tested both Portrait & landscape orientation before settled on one?
I mean.. it just turning it 90° to see which one is better. Isn’t that all???
 
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Darrensk8

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Apr 22, 2010
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I can’t help but feel the larger the screen gets the uglier it looks....will be interesting to see what Apple can do to combat screen heft
 
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Darrensk8

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Apr 22, 2010
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As long as they keep the strap connector as a standard (which I really, really, think they should) so everyone can keep using their existing straps everything will be just fine.
I used to think they would change it but now I’m all on board for them keeping the same connector for 1 revision at the very least.
 
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Morgenland

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May 28, 2009
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So random question. The screen on the watch is in portrait mode when you bend you arm up to look at it. Wouldn't it be better in landscape orientation ??

If you're wearing your watch on your leg, it might make sense. ;-)

More: I hope that the new Watch software allows a triggerable optional "rotation" of the display by 180° to be able to show data of the clock also to people who are facing me.
 
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Schranke

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Apr 3, 2010
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What I still don't get is the need of having an iPhone to have an apple watch. An iPad or a Macbook should be more than enough to set up the basic things.
I would love it if I could use a Mac to set up an Apple Watch. Wanted one for some time now, but still using an old iPhone (4") and were planning to get one once I decide to upgrade. Having access to some of the health info, would make planning my training and food consumption easier, and then it would be interesting to see how I perform over time.
 
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Martius

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Jul 12, 2008
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What I still don't get is the need of having an iPhone to have an apple watch. An iPad or a Macbook should be more than enough to set up the basic things. I can imagine that most people doing outdoor sports, aren't carrying around powerbanks just to be able to use their iPhone and posteriorly their apple watch.
Also at least a 5 day battery would be awesome.

Pure marketing. But I think Apple might be surprised by the increased Watch sales if they allow setup using Mac / iPad. Apple Watch is a good product. When I saw it for the first time I said to myself that I would never buy such a ridiculous thing. Two years later I got the series 2 and I really enjoy using them. Even just as Watch, they are cool.
 
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jroman

macrumors member
Jun 27, 2010
41
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I am still wearing my launch day series 0 Apple Watch. Bigger screen and better battery would be fantastic.

I would love blood glucose monitoring, but that seeems i likely with how niche of a market that would target. I do think they should make it so more bands could have specialized sensors though, so you could buy a band that does blood glucose or ekg readings.
 
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1050792

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Oct 2, 2016
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I hadn’t thought about it, but given that it’s an OLED display it would be cool if along with getting larger the display also gets rounded corners, similar to the iPhone X that match the shape of the watch casing.
With a Notch included.
 
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