In September 2017, Apple released the third generation of their popular smartwatch, the Apple Watch. Improvements such as a speedier S3 CPU and W2 wireless chip debuted alongside the first cellular model. Apple only offers a GPS-enabled version at this time.
All You Need to Know About Apple Watch Series 4
- Dual-core S3-processor
- Communication chip W2
- First model to include cellular connectivity; currently just supports GPS.
- See here for cheap Apple Watches!
- Prices drop as low as $199.
In September 2017, at an Apple event, the company unveiled the Apple Watch Series 3. With enhanced internals and a cellular-connected variant, the Apple Watch Series 3 was a significant upgrade over its predecessors.
In 2022, over five years after its initial debut, the Apple Watch Series 3 is still available for purchase. Apple has maintained the product as a low-cost option for new buyers. Despite the release of the Apple Watch SE, Apple has continued to market the older Series 3 model.
According to rumours, the “Apple Watch Series 8” family may finally displace the Series 3 in the market. Recent buyers should not worry, though; Apple will continue to support the Series 3 with watchOS updates for at least a couple more years.
New Series 3 Apple Watch Functions
With a square OLED Retina display protected by sapphire crystal in the stainless steel and ceramic models and by Ion-X glass in the aluminium ones, this Apple Watch looks quite similar to the Apple Watch Series 2. The smaller, 38 mm variant has a resolution of 272 × 340 pixels, while the larger, 42 mm model has a resolution of 312 x 390.
Each can reach a luminosity of one thousand nits. You can access the various watchOS menus by tapping and swiping the display, as well as using the Side button and Digital Crown, both of which are located on the right side of the device.
The Digital Crown is one of the few components to have undergone a visual refresh in this generation; on the now-defunct cellular devices, a red dot was placed there to indicate the presence of a cellular radio.
The LEDs and sensors that measure blood flow at the user’s wrist make up the heart rate sensor, which is located in the device’s back. This is achieved through the use of photoplethysmography technology.
Apple increased the size of the rear crystal by 0.25 millimetres, which is so small that most customers won’t even notice it. The Apple Watch’s rear housing came in two materials: aluminium and stainless steel. The “composite back” of the standard model without cellular connectivity is ceramic on LTE-equipped variants.
Apple updated the internals of the Apple Watch, as they do with every new model, increasing the device’s speed and adding new functionality. For its third-generation wristwatch, Apple designed the S3 processor, a dual-core microprocessor that offers a 70% performance gain over the S2.
This update makes it possible for Siri to respond to the user by speaking back through the Apple Watch’s speaker, in addition to delivering faster app start speeds and nicer graphics than its predecessor.
The W2 wireless chip, manufactured by Apple, is included with the S3 and accelerates Wi-Fi connections by 85% while simultaneously reducing battery consumption by Bluetooth and Wi-Fi by 50%.
The capacity of some models’ storage spaces has grown. The cellular version comes with 16 GB of storage space, whereas the regular model only has 8. Apple currently only offers the 8GB GPS variant for sale.
The Apple Watch’s barometric altimeter, introduced with the 2017 model year, can determine the device’s altitude above sea level. The sensor can track a number of different metrics, including elevation gain and the number of floors climbed.
In addition to a heart rate sensor on its back, the Apple Watch features a gyroscope, accelerometer, and an ambient light sensor. Wi-Fi 802.11n and Bluetooth 4.2 are standard on all variants. The device can withstand water depths of up to 50 metres.
In 2017, Apple released two distinct versions of the Apple Watch. The manufacturer appended “GPS” to its base model and “GPS + Cellular” to its cellular variant. The second variant is equipped with cellular radios, making it capable of connecting to a mobile network on its own. This meant it could function without needing access to an iPhone.
The Digital Crown had a red dot that indicated cellular connectivity. Apple no longer produces the Series 3 cellular Apple Watch, although Series 6 and later Apple Watches do. When an iPhone isn’t in range, the Apple Watch automatically switches to its cellular radio, which can connect to a wide variety of Internet services.
Examples include using an audio streaming service like Apple Music, Messages, Find My Friends, or a third-party software like WeChat. Streaming Apple Music on the Apple Watch was initially unavailable. In October 2017, as part of the watchOS 4.1 release, Apple finally debuted this feature.
Similar to how streaming through the built-in GPS feature can reduce usage time to just three hours, streaming through the LTE connection does influence battery life. When an iPhone is attached, the watch can use the same phone number and account.
Messages and phone calls can reach the Apple Watch independently of the iPhone. The Apple Watch incorporates a microphone and speaker so you can make and take calls on the go. But, it can also be used in private with AirPods.
Apple utilised a built-in eSIM to increase LTE connectivity without modifying the form factor or size. This design choice requires a hundred times less room than a regular SIM card, hence no extra SIM slot is needed. The Apple Watch’s screen doubles as its antenna for cellular connectivity, eliminating the need for a dedicated antenna.
The Apple Watch Series 3 is only compatible with select carriers because of its unique connection requirements. Customers in the United States can add the device to their service plans with AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, or Verizon for $10 per month.
At WWDC 2020, Apple unveiled watchOS 7, the next significant operating system update for Apple Watch. In September of 2020, the upgrade became live. There have been major shifts in the use of handwashing timers, sleep monitoring, and movement statistics. Only Apple Watches from Series 3 and later can update.
The sleep monitoring feature in watchOS 7 added more information about a user’s sleeping habits to the basic tracking supplied in Bedtime. Users could monitor their sleep quality over time by viewing data collected from the device’s built-in accelerometer.
Dancing, core training, functional strength training, and cooldowns were some of the newer forms of exercise. Apple’s new unified fitness streaming and monitoring service, Apple Fitness+, has also been incorporated into the upgrade.
Watch faces were also updated by Apple. A tachymeter, which measures how long it takes to travel a specific distance in seconds, has been integrated into the updated Chronograph Pro watch face. In addition, several complications from the same app can be added to the same watch face.
Another major update was the ability to share customised watch faces with others using Apple Watch messages, web links, or a long press on the display. Apple also carefully selects Apple Watch face layouts.
Keeping tabs on how often you wash your hands is a new feature. The Apple Watch will prompt the user to wash their hands for 20 seconds if it detects that they are doing so (by listening for the sound of running water, for example).
Similar to how it keeps tabs on how often the user sleeps, the Health app will document how often hand washing occurs and provide more guidance on how to prevent the spread of illness.
New features, such as turn-by-turn directions that give preference to bike routes, are being added to Apple Maps for iOS to complement the Apple Watch experience. This includes avoiding paths that feature stairs or cautions about very steep inclines.
Siri’s ability to take dictation on the go has also been enhanced by Apple. Voice-to-text accuracy was improved as a result of this.
Styles and Bands
Many Apple Watch Series 3 models and bands were available at launch, in addition to the standard 38mm and 42mm sizes. Apple now only offers the 2017 version in black and white with Sport Bands.
In addition to Silver and Space Gray, the aluminium casing variants are now available in Gold. There was also a band on each one. The original Sport Band and its successor, the Sport Loop, both had a little loop that allowed the wearer to snug the band around their wrist.
Silver and Space Black were available for the stainless steel casings. These would look great with either the Sport Band or a Milanese Loop to match your outfit. With this new generation, Nike introduced the Nike Sport Band and Nike Sport Loop in a variety of colours, both of which are designed with athletes in mind.
Unique watch faces were also included with the Apple Watch Nike+. In addition, touching the app’s dedicated complication could open Nike+ Run Club. On October 2, only days before the release of the Nike+ model, Nike upgraded the Nike+ Run Club app with Audio Guided Runs, a social networking feature called “Cheers,” and an activity history feature.
Single Tour Rallye in perforated Gala calfskin, said to be inspired by the legendary Hermes driving glove, and Single Tour Eperion d’Or, based on an equestrian scarf pattern designed by Henri d’Origny, are two of the new leather band possibilities for the Apple Watch Hermes models.
The redesigned watch face on these versions was based on the Carrick Hermes watch that Henri d’Origny created in 1993. In December 2017, Hermès introduced a new 38 mm band called the Noir Swift Leather Tour Medor, which retails for $589.
Ceramic housings were used for the Apple Watch Edition variants. These came in both black and white, and the Sport band matched either colour. In December of 2020, a plethora of new Sport Band alternatives were available in the Apple Online Store. Three new colours were introduced: a $49 “Flash” bracelet in either dark teal or hot orange or bright yellow.
Calling in an Emergency
The cellular Apple Watch Series 3, which was discontinued along with the wearable, was useful in an emergency because it had LTE and could make phone calls. The Emergency SOS button allowed it to send out a distress signal for help.
To activate, press and hold the Watch’s side button for several seconds. Then it either notifies emergency contacts via text message or 911 immediately. A Reddit user in November 2020 tried to use the feature on an inactive Watch running watchOS 4.1, but was unable.
Three minutes after a second test, a call was connected to 911, just as Apple Executive Relations had promised in an email. The story of kite surfer John Zilles, who crashed his hydrofoil a mile off the California coast and into shark-infested waters in November 2020, is an early success story for the Apple Watch Emergency SOS feature.
Zilles phoned his son through his Apple Watch so that his son could transmit his number to the harbour guard. Afterwards, a police boat came and rescued him. In late 2017, the Emergency SOS function saved a woman’s life after a drunk motorist had caused her automobile to soar into the air.
Kacie Anderson, who is still healing from the severe concussion, brain swelling, and bulging discs she sustained in the accident and which prompted the warning on her Apple Watch after she came to after passing out, triggered the alert.
Cost of an Apple Watch Series 3
The 38mm Apple Watch Series 3 retails for $199, while the 42mm model goes for $229. There was once a cellular version, but now it’s just available with GPS.