Apple Watch Series 4 with ECG sensor, larger display to go on sale from $399 onwards

Unlike the new iPhone, one could argue that the Watch itself is far more interesting an update.

The new Apple Watch Series 4 is bigger, faster and more densely packed with features than the Watch it replaced. The screen size has gone up by 30 percent, but the Watch is also slimmer now. Powering it is a brand new, dual-core, 64-bit Apple S4 chip that is claimed to be twice as fast as the S3 on the Watch Series 3.

In fact, unlike the new iPhone, one could argue that the Watch itself is far more interesting an update.

Display: As mentioned earlier, it’s now 30 percent larger. The display also extends closer to the edges. Because of this, the Watch will now be available in 40 mm and 44 mm face sizes.

Fall detection: Apple says that the Watch Series 4 features a brand-new sensor package that’s up to 8 times more sensitive as the previous one. This sensitivity means that the Apple Watch now has fall detection, a feature that could be a game-changer, especially for the elderly.

On detecting a fall, the Watch will automatically contact a guardian and/or emergency services, depending on how it’s been setup. Better yet, if the person starts moving after a fall, the Watch will share location data with the relevant people.

ECG: In what could be a world first, the new Watch features an electrocardiogram (ECG) sensor built in, which makes it the world’s first ECG unit that’s available over the counter. According to Apple, the new sensor can now record a detailed ECG of your heart in your Health app and will notify you if it detects anomalies in your heart function.

Users only need to touch the Digital Crown to activate the ECG sensor. You’ll have a report in 30 seconds. The Watch will also monitor heart rhythm automatically from time to time.

All health data is recorded and encrypted and can be shared in PDF form with doctors.

The Watch Series 4 features a larger display.

The Watch Series 4 features a larger display.

Better feedback: Alongside better sensors, Apple has also upgraded the feedback systems in the Watch. The speakers are apparently 50 percent louder now and is better optimised for conversations. Rotating the crown will also give haptic feedback. The mics have also been reengineered to reduce reverb and allow for better conversations.

Improved connectivity: The back of the phone is made of ceramic and sapphire, improving connectivity, says Apple.

Fitness features: Improved fitness-tracking features and support for more forms of workout aside, battery life has also been improved, allowing the Watch to track activities such as running for much longer.

New complications and faces: Watch Series 4 will come with several new complications that are designed to be more informative, says Apple. There will also be a bunch of new animated faces with fluid effects, including smoke, fire and water.

Pricing and availability: The GPS + Cellular version will retail at $499 and the GPS-only version for $399. Devices can be pre-ordered from 14 September and will be delivered from 21 September onwards.

Unfortunately, there’s no word on an India launch.

Variants include Silver, Gold and Space Grey, as well as a Gold, Silver and Space Black stainless steel options.

Nike+ models with a new Watch Face and band will also be available later.

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