Apple Watch Series 7 brings bigger screen and tweaked design

The lowdown on the new features Apple hopes will keep it top of the smartwatch pile
Apple Watch Series 7 officially unveiled
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Apple has officially unveiled the Apple Watch Series 7 with new screen tech, a tweaked design and new rugged credentials.

Announced at its California Streaming event, the Series 7 didn't bring wholesale changes to the Watch, and feels like an iterative update to the Series 6.

On the design front, it grows to 41mm and 45mm sizes, but Apple has reduced the bezel sizes to offer 20% more screen estate than the Series 6. Apple says the Series 7's new display is 70% brighter than its predecessor, and is able to fit in 50% more text to make it better suited to read emails and long messages.

With that extra screen space, Apple has redesigned the watchOS interface with larger buttons on apps and has introduced a full keyboard mode, which uses AI to help predict what you're going to type next. There are new exclusive watch faces for Series 7, such as a redesigned Modular face, that can host richer complications using the extra space.

New aluminum finishes for Series 7

New aluminum finishes for Series 7

Contrary to the rumor mill suggesting that Apple would introduce a flatter case design to match the design approach it had taken on its iPhones, Apple instead decided to offer a largely same case look with softer, more rounded corners.

Apple has talked up the improved durability of the Series 7 as it features crack resistant crystal on the display and has an IP6X certification for dust resistance to go with the existing WR50 water resistant rating.

In terms of Apple Watch Series 7 model options, there's five new aluminium case colors and there's new Nike and Hermès editions of the Series 7.

The Apple Watch Series 3 and the Watch SE will continue to be available, so there's no Watch SE 2 for now.

Features-wise, it seems we can expect more of the same that we got on the Series 6. That means you'll still be able to monitor blood oxygen, take ECG readings and get access to all the same fitness tracking and sport watch-style modes and metrics.

The larger Series 7 screen allows for text input via a keyboard

The larger Series 7 screen allows for text input via a keyboard

The Watch Series 7 will of course run on watchOS and will run on watchOS 8 out of the box.

The latest major update to Apple's smartwatch operating system was announced at its WWDC conference back in July this year introducing features like the ability to add ID cards and driver licenses to your Watch, adding more apps that offer support for the always-on display, new workout modes and richer messaging support.

Apple also revealed that it's adding better support for cycling tracking including a new fall detection mode that's designed for when you fall off your bike.

Another big rumor for the new Apple Watch was that it would see a boost in battery life, but that sadly wasn't the case.

Apple still touts the same 18 hour battery life as it has for every generation of its Watch. It has added some fast charging capability though, claiming it can charge 33% faster than the Series 6 and can go from 0-80% in 45 minutes of charging.

For those who care about sleep tracking, the Series 7 can offer 8 hours of monitoring that bed time from just 8 minutes of charging too.

In terms of pricing, the Watch Series 7 will start at £399, so sticks around the same pricing as the Series 6 launch price. The Series 3 sticks at £199 and the Watch SE at £269.

The Series 7 will be available 'Later this Fall', which is of course very vague, but might go some way to confirm some speculation that Apple may experience shipping delays with its latest Watch.

Overall though, it's not the biggest Apple Watch update. We didn't get any groundbreaking new health sensors or bigger battery life, so maybe Apple is saving that for the Watch Series 8 next year.