Envisioning Apple’s next-gen Watch: New materials, sensors, and more

“If Apple follows the release cycles of its other products, the Apple Watch could see at least a minor refresh every year and perhaps even a larger overhaul every other year, much like we see with Apple’s iPhones and iPads,” Jordan Kahn writes for 9to5Mac.

“What might Apple’s second and third-generation Apple Watch collections look like?” Kahn writes. “And what will that mean for owners of the current collection?”

“With a lot of help from our friend Antonio De Rosa of ADR Studios, we’ve envisioned what future versions of Apple Watch might look like based on supply chain chatter, watch trends, and our own intel on what Apple has in the works,” Kahn writes. “One of the most likely possibilities for a next-generation Apple Watch is new case materials. A report from The Wall Street Journal claimed Apple was experimenting with platinum versions of the Watch, which was later corroborated by info from usually reliable supply chain sources. Other possibilities, if trends from the watch industry are any indication, could include titanium, ceramics, white gold or even Liquidmetal.”

Much more, including images of what Apple’s next-gen Watch might look like, in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Mmm, Liguidmetal.

MacDailyNews Note: Today is Good Friday. As such, the U.S. financial markets are closed for the day and posting will be less frequent today.

19 Comments

  1. Swiss has multi-year exclusive license for LM for watches, so Apple can not have that.

    However, I wish Apple would produce Titanium alloy watches — I am happy that steel variant is very durable and hard, but steel watch with steel strap can weigh as much as 120 grammes or something.

    Titanium would be perfect: just as hard and durable, but dramatically lighter.

    (Obviously, even the best Aluminium alloy is not real option since it will wear out in just few years even if you are accurate.)

    1. I remember the hinges on Apple’s Titanium PowerBooks were exceptionally fragile, often failing after a couple of years use.

      Now, a watch casing will be a single chunk, which is good, but the thinner strap slot might be a weak point.

      As a result, I’m not sure I’d be interested in a titanium casing unless they made it a bit stronger for its thin parts.

      1. Titanium case and strap are not going to be thinner, they just going to be way lighter with exact same volume as steel variant. Titanium is quite common in higher class Swiss watches.

        By the way, Apple’s steel Watch is lighter than golden version not lighter because they are thinner, too. The same is with Aluminium watches: they are just as thick as steel and golden one, volume is about the same, the material is just way lighter.

        1. I have a titanium band on my (nearly) 10 year old Casio Protrek Triple Sensor (soon to be replaced with an Apple Watch Sport ). It’s taken a beating over the years and has performed well. The paint/coating has gotten a bit scuffed but it still looks pretty good. As derss mentioned, it is a lightweight band.

    2. Apple would never replace steel with titanium, rather they’d replace aluminum with titanium. Further, only the aluminum watch is concerned about weight. The Steel and Gold watches actually are preferable to be heavier. People want the device to feel solid and substantial. Too light and it give the opposite feeling. Of course the Sport watch’s reason for being is its lightness and light price.

      1. Titanium is super pricey comparing to aluminium, Apple can not do that as aluminium watches are the cheapest one. Unfortunately, titanium watches (if made) will cost more than steel ones.

    3. I wonder if apple will call it the “Apple Wrist Computer” so they can get away with the exclusive deal for liquidmetal in electronics devices, or if this is even necessary, since it is an electronics device anyway

      1. No, Apple’s license does not include watches, and Apple calls it a watch. So no chance for LM, alas. Even if Apple would just buy out LM alloy inventor company, this would not change since Swiss has multi-year license that can not be cancelled no matter what happens with the issuer.

  2. Nice article, and certainly endurance is possibly a big factor that could influence the watch. There are some that say it will be obsolete, will it work with the next generation iphone. Will it still be functional say 10-20 years from now, that’s the craftsmanship that other watch makers may mention.

    Or is it really a watch? It looks like a watch it does tell time, but to me at least it is a foray into the wearable computer. That could include watches, rings, bracelets and all sorts of jewelry, clothes, glasses, shoes and so on. From this perspective the watch should not be restricted by the parameters set by regular “mechanical” watches.

    We’ll see, I’m sure it will be fun to watch and Time Cook’s company will sell lots of them.

    1. The watch is a computer, communications device, and an iPhone compliment device. “Watch” gives people a familiar frame of reference. Maybe in the future Apple will rename it. 😀

      1. Yes, that’s exactly the point that I find amusing. It looks like a watch wears like a watch has some functionality of a watch (though not mechanical) but will it have the enduring quality of a mechanical watch. Not so sure on that one but as we both note it’s a device that is unique.

        Thanks for the reply.

        1. Presently iPhones are being passed down to family members as newer models are purchased. I see no reason why this trend will not continue with the watch. Doing this extend the effective life of the watch. I don’t see the watch being passed on to others as a “heritage” watch, however, the expected life of solid state circuitry is about 1,000,000 hours. 😀

          1. I can see it now: “Son, I’m giving you my three-year old Apple Watch. As most Apple products quickly lose support over the years, it doesn’t support the lastest version of iOS. It can’t be upgraded. It doesn’t have enough memory for the most popular apps. And, by giving it to you, I can feel like I’ve recycled it when Apple has clearly turned this into landfill material. Enjoy!”

            1. I seriously doubt you’d give your kid a brand new watch. A hand-me-down, yes. The apps will still work, the battery can be replaced, it will have a useful life for years to come. 😀

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.