There is no poor time to buy an Apple Watch, but there are better and worse time. Apple releases new Apple Watch models (called “series”) at an annual cadence, and the price rarely changes that much. So to avoid buying an Apple Watch that’s outdated after just a few weeks, you’ll want to time it right.
Here’s what we know about Apple Watch release dates and when you should or shouldn’t buy it.
Updated 08/05/21: With the Apple Watch Series 8 and possibly a new Apple Watch SE coming next month, now is not a good time to buy.
Apple Watch: Prices and Specifications
Most recent issue: October 2021
Apple released the Apple Watch Series 7 on October 15, 2021. It’s largely identical to the Series 6, just with a larger screen thanks to slimmer bezels and a USB-C charging cable that allows for slightly faster charging. It is the same price as the Series 6, starting at $399.
In the fall of 2020, Apple introduced the Apple Watch SE. It’s actually a slightly updated Series 4 and starts at $279 for 40mm and $309 for 44mm, with cellular options costing an additional $50. It’s often cheaper at Amazon. Apple often sells previous Apple Watches at a discounted price, and right now that’s the Series 3, which starts at a modest $199.
Apple Watch: why you should buy
While we don’t think the Series 7 is really an upgrade over the Series 6, it is is better, and is essentially the best smartwatch money can buy. And the iPhone SE is a very affordable entry point to Apple Watch.
Since both models may be replaced in the lineup soon, consider waiting.
Apple Watch: why you should wait
Apple usually introduces the new Apple Watch at the same event as the new iPhones – almost always in September. With that coming so soon, you don’t want to buy an Apple Watch just to make it obsolete a few weeks later. Or to spend more on a Series 7 that drops in price right after.
The Apple Watch Series 8 is expected to have similar specs to the Series 7, with the possible addition of a skin temperature sensor. The latest rumors say that a larger “Pro” model with great durability and battery life for heavy sports use will join the lineup. The Apple Watch SE 2 will probably look just like the current Apple Watch SE, but with a better processor and possibly new sensors and an always-on display.
Macworld recommends: WAIT
The new Apple Watch range is probably less than two months away, making this a bad time to buy a current model. The biggest change to the Series 8 will probably be the new oversized, extra rugged “Pro” sports model, but the possible addition of a skin temperature sensor is intriguing. If you’re thinking about the Apple Watch SE, you should definitely wait, as the new model is rumored to bring several useful new features such as an always-on display and newer health sensors.