Apple announced the Watch Ultra in September 2022 alongside the Apple Watch Series 8 and the second generation of the Watch SE. The Watch Ultra marked a new look for the Apple Watch though, with a more rugged design, a significantly larger casing and a range of extra features on top of what the Apple Watch Series 8 offers.
What about its successor though? This is everything we have heard so far about the Apple Watch Ultra 2.
Apple Watch Ultra 2 release date and price
- September 2023?
- From $799/£849?
Initial rumours suggested that the Apple Watch Ultra 2 wouldn’t arrive until 2024 or 2025, though more recent reports – from reputable sources too – have claimed that we will see it this year. The Apple Watch Ultra was announced alongside the iPhone 14 models on 7 September 2022 before being released on 23 September 2023. If the reports that an Apple Watch Ultra 2 will appear this year are accurate, we would expect to see it revealed with the Apple Watch Series 9 at the beginning of September 2023. Don’t get too excited just yet though, as it’s very possible the Watch Ultra 2 could arrive on a two-year cycle instead, like the Watch SE.
In terms of an actual date, Apple’s September event was traditionally held on a Tuesday and on the first or second week of September, though for 2022, the company changed it to a Wednesday. It’s possible therefore, that the Watch Ultra 2 could be released on 5, 6, 12 or 13 September. We won’t know the date until about two weeks before either, and even then, we won’t know if the Watch Ultra 2 will make an appearance until the event itself.
In terms of price, the Watch Ultra 2 costs from $799 in the US and £849 in the UK. We would expect the 2nd generation model to cost similar, though there has been a suggestion that new display technology could cause the price to increase slightly.
Apple / Pocket-lint
Apple Watch Ultra
The Apple Watch Ultra is the Apple Watch Series 8 on steroids, plus so much more. It’s bulked up to offer a more rough and ready device with not only a tougher casing, but a bigger one too, alongside a bigger display, more tactile buttons and extra buttons too.
Apple Watch Ultra 2 design and display
- Rugged design to remain
- New display possible
The rumours surrounding the Apple Watch UItra 2 are thin on the ground at the moment, though we suspect the design will remain similar to the current Watch Ultra. Afterall, the standard Apple Watch Series 8 looks almost identical to the original Apple Watch with only minor changes to the design in the eight years of its existence and given the Watch Ultra was an entirely new and fresh look for Apple’s smartwatch, we can’t see this changing dramatically for at least the next couple of iterations.
The rumours do suggest the Watch Ultra 2 could come with a larger display though and a Micro LED display instead of OLED display. This has been suggested a couple of times, with rumours claiming the new Ultra could have a 2.1-inch display compared to the 1.9-inch display in the current Watch Ultra. If it switches to Micro LED, it’s likely to be brighter than the Watch Ultra’s OLED screen, though the Watch Ultra is already pretty impressive at 2000nits.
Overall, we expect to see the flat display design on the Watch Ultra 2, along with the Digital Crown and side button on the right, and the programmable Action Button on the left. We also expect it to be made from titanium, but whether it will come in more than one colour option remains to be seen for now.
Apple Watch Ultra 2 features and hardware
- Same sensors as Watch Ultra expected
- Likely to offer improvements
The Apple Watch Ultra is packed with a plethora of sensors and features on board and we expect all of these to transfer to the Watch Ultra 2. It’s likely some areas will be improved and some extra features added, but at the every least the Watch Ultra 2 should offer water resistance to 100 metres, an IP6X rating, a MIL-STD-810H rating, and be EN13319 rated, the latter of which is dive computer standard.
The Watch Ultra runs on the S8 chip with 64-bit dual-core processor, which is the same as the Watch Series 8. It’s likely the Watch Ultra 2 will see an upgrade to the S9 chip, though its possible not much will change under the hood. The Apple Watch chip has been renamed for several years but it’s remained largely the same. There’s also a W3 wireless chip on board the Watch Ultra and a U1 chip, both of which would be expected in the Watch Ultra 2, perhaps with some improvements.
In terms of sensors, the Watch Ultra has optical and electrical heart rate sensors, a blood oxygen sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope and altimeter. There’s also a body temperature sensor and there’s a huge range of features on board, which you can read all about in our Apple Watch tips and tricks. They range from being able to take an ECG to tracking a multitude of workouts from walking to yoga. You of course get smartphone notifications too and the sleep tracking is excellent, all of which we expect on the Watch Ultra 2, along with things like a depth gauge, built-in siren and precision dual-frequency GPS that uses L1 and L5 GPS for more precise metrics. The same user experience to the Watch Ultra is also likely, though watchOS 10 will change this up a little by adding widgets and the Watch Ultra 2 will launch on this software. The Watch Ultra will also be upgraded to this software though, including offering the Snoopy Watch Face.
There will no doubt be some extra features on board the Watch Ultra 2, but we expect to see everything in the Watch Ultra and then some on a new model.
Apple Watch Ultra 2 battery
The Apple Watch Ultra has the best battery life of all the Apple Watch models available, lasting up to 36 hours on a single charge. It also has a Low Power Mode that will give you up to 60 hours, though some functions are reduced when in this mode.
It doesn’t quite compete with some of Garmin’s top watches though, like the Fenix 7 models, so it wouldn’t be too surprising to see Apple place some extra focus on the battery life of the Watch Ultra 2 in order to compete with its biggest competition, but for now, nothing has been suggested in rumours.
Apple Watch Ultra 2 rumours: What’s happened so far?
This is everything that has been mentioned about the rumoured Apple Watch Ultra 2 so far. Keep in mind nothing is confirmed.
25 June 2023: Apple Watch Ultra 2 could arrive sooner than expected
Mark Gurman of Bloomberg has claimed Apple is working on a Watch Ultra 2 for a launch this year, rather than next year as previously rumoured.
7 February 2023: Micro LED display rumoured again for the Apple Watch Ultra, but maybe later than you think
Display analyst Ross Young has pointed out that while Micro LED is expected for a future version of the Watch Ultra, it might not appear until 2025.
1 February 2023: Apple rumoured to working on MicroLED for next Apple Watch Ultra
Digitimes reported that Apple was working on Micro LED display technology to use on the next Apple Watch Ultra expected in 2023.
23 January 2023: Apple Watch Ultra 2 could be more expensive
Forbes reported on a rumour from Digital Supply Chain analysts that suggested the next Apple Watch Ultra will have a bigger display with MicroLED technology instead of OLED that will drive up its price.
2 January 2023: Apple Watch Ultra with micro LED display rumoured for 2024
Tech analyst Jeff Pu claimed Apple would release a device in 2024 with a Micro LED display, expected to be the Watch Ultra. It’s said the device will have a 2.1-inch display.