“We call it the Apple Watch Series 2 and it has been completely re-engineered,” Apple COO Jeff Williams said at the company’s highly-anticipated event on Wednesday.
The Apple Watch is the number two selling watch brand in the world, just behind Rolex, according to Apple CEO Tim Cook. But even with its new time displays, messaging animations, and productivity features, the updated Apple Watch appears to be more of a fitness tracker than anything else. With apps for swimmers, runners, and hikers, the company seems to have embraced the Apple Watch’s position as a Fitbit competitor rather than trying to push it as a luxury watch. Most of the watch’s new features focus on health. “We couldn’t be happier that so many people are using it to become more happy and healthy,” Cook said. “Apple Watch has really changed what people expect from the watch, but we are just getting started.” Here are some of the Apple Watch Series 2’s new health and fitness features:
Runners have been able to use the Apple Watch to track speed and heart rate, but due to the nature of the series 1, swimmers were unable to do the same. One huge feature of the Series 2 is that it is water resistant for up to 50 meters. The speakers on the watch eject water so that it doesn’t damage the interior mechanism.
It may seem counterintuitive at first, but Pokemon Go is the perfect addition to the Apple Watch’s fitness tracking features. Niantic Labs was on hand at the event to explain Pokemon Go for Apple Watch Series 2. As it relates to fitness, users will be able to go out and catch Pokemon while simultaneously tracking the number of steps they take and their heart rates. They’ll also be able to share those metrics with friends and loved ones via new activity sharing features.
The Series 2 boasts higher quality imaging, as well as new activity faces. Returning from the Series 1 are the activity rings, which show you how active you’ve been throughout the day. The updated Apple Watch provides coaching and motivation to help you reach your fitness goals. It also allows you to share your activity rings with your friends and family so that you can achieve your health goals together.
Mindfulness is both beneficial and trendy, a fact not lost on Apple in its development of the Series 2’s new features. The Breathe App is designed to “quiet your mind” and “relax your body.” The app guides you through a breathing exercise and has reminders to keep you mindful throughout the day.
The Apple Watch Nike+ is a completely separate watch designed for runners. The Nike+ app has been hugely successful on both the iPhone and the Apple Watch Series 1. The new design, which is set for an October release, has a flexible sports band with ventilation, has exclusive watch faces, and allows you to track your progress like never before.
Apple Watch Series 2 to will go on sale September 16, starting at $369. A faster version of the Apple Watch Series 1 will also go on sale that day, starting at $269.