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Definition: Apple Watch

A family of smartwatches from Apple that debuted in April 2015. Compatible with iPhones starting with the iPhone 5, the screen's Force Touch senses the difference between a tap and a press enabling two modes of touch interaction. Models include an altimeter and Apple Music streaming, and all models include a heart rate monitor and irregular rhythm notification. Each series is available in two case sizes with numerous band styles. The watch's Taptic Engine "taps" the wearer on the wrist for notifications.

If the watch was previously paired with the iPhone via Bluetooth but goes out of range, it can use the same Wi-Fi network to send iMessages, an animated sketch, taps and heartbeats to other Apple Watch users (see Digital Touch). The device can also run Siri over Wi-Fi.

Apple Watch 7
In 2021, the Watch 7 line adds new faces and bands, a brighter screen, fast charging and more screen area (although case dimensions are the same). The 7 models are also more shatterproof and dust resistant.

Apple Watch 6 and SE (40mm/44mm)
Introduced in 2020, these flagship models include international emergency calling, fall detection and compass. The Series 6 features an always-on display and sensors for blood oxygen level and taking an electrocardiogram (ECG). Cellular capability is optional. Using the Watch 5 processor, the SE is the lower-price model without the blood oxygen and ECG monitors.

Apple Watch 3 (38mm/42mm)
The Series 3 is the economy line. When introduced in 2017, performance was improved over the Series 2 along with lower prices. With the cellular option, the Series 3 was the first Apple Watch to become a stand-alone cellphone, but the cellular option was dropped in 2020.

Apple Watch Nike, Apple Watch Hermes (40mm/44mm)
In 2016, Apple introduced the sports-oriented Nike and fashionable Hermes models. As of 2020, the Nike option is available in Series 6 and SE, and the Hermes models are available in 10 different band styles.

A Digital Crown
The Apple Watch Digital Crown is used to zoom, scroll, activate Siri and display the home screen. The power button accesses contacts and Apple Pay.

The Original Collections
With more than 40 models, no smartwatch ever debuted with such variety. The aluminum Sport line had plastic bands, and the stainless steel Watch was available in several band styles. Edition models had gold-plated cases and one in solid gold retailed for $17,000. (Images courtesy of Apple Inc.)

The First Update
In 2016, the second-generation Edition changed from gold to ceramic cases at a lower price. The Sport became Series 1, and the Watch became Series 2. Nike and Hermes models were added and are still available as of 2020. (Images courtesy of Apple Inc.)

Easy to Connect the Charger
Apple's MagSafe connector attaches magnetically onto the back of the watch.

Apple Watch Bands
Almost overnight, an industry of third-party Apple Watch bands sprang up; witness this assortment at Best Buy.