Apple Watch Collection 7 Assessment


The Apple Watch Collection 7 (beginning at $399) is Cupertino’s newest flagship smartwatch. It affords all of the well being, security, and life-style options of its extremely rated predecessor, however with a bigger show that is simpler to learn, improved mud safety and crack resistance, and a redesigned charging system that takes much less time to juice up. Although a minor replace from the Collection 6, the seventh technology’s refinements make an already excellent smartwatch extra sensible for on a regular basis duties like studying and responding to texts, checking the time when your wrist is down, monitoring your outside actions, and monitoring your sleep. The Collection 7 is Apple’s most engaging and sturdy wearable but, and an Editors’ Alternative award winner. 

Simpler on the Eyes 

At first look, the Collection 7 would not look drastically totally different than earlier fashions. It nonetheless has an oblong case with rounded corners, a aspect button, and a Digital Crown/Dwelling button. Maintain the Collection 7 as much as the Collection 6 and its extra reasonably priced however practically an identical sibling, the Watch SE, nevertheless, and you may discover the bodily modifications: The Collection 7 has a barely bigger case and far narrower bezels than different fashions, permitting for considerably extra display space. 

PCMag Logo

You Can Belief Our Opinions

Left to right: Apple Watch Series 7, Series 6


Left to proper: Apple Watch Collection 7, Collection 6
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

The Collection 7’s giant, brilliant, and colourful show is its standout characteristic. At simply 1.7mm vast, the show border is 40% thinner than that of the Collection 6 and Watch SE, in addition to 60% thinner than than on the Collection 3.

With a decision of 420 by 352 pixels on the 41mm mannequin and 484 by 396 pixels on the 45mm model, the Collection 7 affords 20% extra display actual property than the Collection 6 and 50% greater than the Collection 3. It matches 59% extra textual content on display than the Collection 6, which implies much less scrolling if you’re studying messages, emails, and articles. 

The always-on OLED Retina show nonetheless incorporates a most brightness stage of 1,000 nits when energetic, and is simple to learn indoors and out of doors. But it surely’s now 70% brighter indoors when your wrist is down, making it simpler to verify the time.

Left to right: Apple Watch Series 7, Series 6


Left to proper: Apple Watch Collection 7, Collection 6
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

Apple additionally up to date the watch’s consumer interface to reap the benefits of the larger show. Buttons are actually bigger and simpler to faucet, which is useful if you’re coming into your Passcode to unlock the watch, utilizing the Calculator app, or enabling Do Not Disturb mode from the Management Heart, for example. 

The corporate additionally added three new textual content sizes, for a complete of 9. If in case you have imaginative and prescient issues, you can also make the textual content measurement fairly giant: To vary the default setting, navigate to Settings > Show & Brightness > Textual content Measurement. And for the primary time, the Apple Watch has a full QWERTY keyboard. It is accessible wherever it’s essential enter textual content, helps each faucets and swipes, and makes use of machine studying to foretell the phrase you are typing.  

Assessing Your Choices

The Collection 7 is available in 41mm and 45mm case sizes (up from 40mm and 44mm), in 100% recycled aluminum, polished chrome steel, or brushed titanium supplies. The 41mm mannequin measures 1.61 by 1.37 by 0.42 inches (HWD). The 45mm mannequin is a contact taller and wider, however the identical thickness, at 1.77 by 1.50 by 0.42 inches. 

The aluminum variant, which begins at $399, is available in 5 colour choices: Midnight (black with a deep blue undertone), Starlight (a mix of silver and gold), Inexperienced (new to the Apple Watch line), Blue (a brighter tone than final 12 months’s Blue), and Product Crimson (a extra jewel-toned ruby than final 12 months’s mannequin). Fashions with mobile connectivity begin at $499.

The chrome steel variant, which is shinier and extra sturdy than the aluminum one, begins at $699 and is available in Silver, Graphite (darkish grey), or Gold tones. The titanium variant, which affords the sturdiness of chrome steel however is lighter, begins at $799 and is available in Pure (a silver hue) or House Black (darkish grey). 

My unit came with matching small/medium and medium/large size Sport Band straps in the box


My Apple Watch got here with matching small/medium and medium/giant Sport Band straps within the field
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

Apple despatched me the 41mm aluminum Collection 7 in Starlight with mobile connectivity ($499). My unit got here with matching small/medium and medium/giant Sport Band straps within the field. Apple additionally despatched a Pink Pomelo/Tan Sport Loop band(Opens in a brand new window) ($49). For extra on Apple Watch equipment, try our checklist of favorites.

Apple is protecting the Watch SE and Collection 3 in its lineup as extra reasonably priced alternate options, beginning at $279 and $199, respectively. Try our comparability information for a detailed take a look at what every mannequin affords.

Many of the Collection 7’s inside specs stay unchanged from the Collection 6; it nonetheless affords 32GB of storage and assist for two.5GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi bands. Its dual-core S7 System in Bundle (SiP) gives the identical velocity because the S6 within the Collection 6, each of that are 20% sooner than the Watch SE’s S5 chip.

The Series 7 retains its predecessors' side button and Digital Crown/Home button


The Collection 7 retains its predecessors’ aspect button and Digital Crown/Dwelling button
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

Just like the Collection 6, the Collection 7 incorporates a blood oxygen sensor for SpO2 measurements, electrical and optical coronary heart sensors to take an electrocardiogram (ECG) and monitor your coronary heart, an accelerometer and gyroscope to detect in the event you’ve taken a fall, an always-on altimeter for real-time elevation readings, GPS and GNSS to measure operating and different exercises, a compass for wrist-based navigation, and an ambient mild sensor to regulate the display brightness. 

On the protection entrance, the watch can provide you with a warning if it detects a excessive or low coronary heart charge, irregular coronary heart rhythm, and loud sounds that may injury your listening to. It additionally helps Emergency SOS, worldwide emergency calling, and might routinely name for assist in the event you’re unable to after a tough fall. 

The Collection 7 arrives with the most recent technology of Apple’s smartwatch working system, watchOS 8, which delivers a bunch of recent options together with digital home key assist, in a single day respiration monitoring, exercise monitoring choices for Pilates and Tai Chi, Portraits and World Time watch faces, recent mindfulness instruments, a redesigned Photographs app, and extra. 

In testing, the new automatic cycling detection feature worked


In testing, the brand new computerized biking detection characteristic labored as anticipated
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

WatchOS 8 additionally provides a number of new options for cyclists, together with the power to routinely detect bike rides and remind you to begin an Out of doors Cycle exercise. As well as, Apple up to date its biking exercise algorithm to extra precisely measure calorie burn if you’re using an electrical bike. And in the event you fall if you’re using, the Apple Watch can name for assist. Apple says it improved its fall-detection algorithms to raised detect tumbles throughout exercises, together with biking. If the watch detects a tough fall adopted by a minute of inactivity, it’ll routinely name emergency companies, although you may disable this characteristic in the event you favor.

Whereas WatchOS 8 is free to obtain on the Collection 3 and later, some options are unsupported on older watches. For instance, the Portraits watch face would not work on the Collection 3, and the brand new computerized biking detection characteristic, which requires Apple’s latest-generation movement sensors, solely works on Watch SE, Collection 6, and Collection 7. 

Easy to Set Up

Just like how the Samsung Galaxy Watch4 solely works with Android units, the Collection 7 is unique to Apple’s smartphones. It requires an iPhone 6s or later that runs iOS 15 or increased. In testing, I had no downside connecting it with an iPhone 12 Professional Max. 

I did have a momentary panic assault after I unboxed my assessment unit and observed that the included charging wire not makes use of USB-A. It comes with a brand new Magnetic Quick Cost USB-C cable, however you want your personal energy adapter as a result of you do not get one within the field. Happily, the brand new charging cable works with any USB-C suitable adapter, so I used to be capable of plug it into my laptop computer to juice up the watch. 

If you do not have a USB-C-compatible adapter, the Collection 7 may also work with earlier Apple Watch charging cables, docks, and equipment. Should you use an older charging cable or accent, nevertheless, it’ll cost at slower speeds. 

The setup process was seamless, as expected


The setup course of stays seamless

The setup course of was seamless, as anticipated. After you place the watch on the charging puck, the show activates and tells you to carry your iPhone close to. Then, you get a pop-up in your iPhone asking if you wish to use that system to arrange the watch. Press Proceed, then choose Set Up for Myself or Set Up for a Household Member(Opens in a brand new window). The latter choice enables you to arrange the watch for somebody who would not have their very own iPhone. That individual will then be capable of use the watch to make calls, ship messages, and share their location with you. 

Subsequent, the telephone instructs you to align the Apple Watch face with a viewfinder in your telephone’s display to pair them. As soon as efficiently paired, the watch will ask if you wish to Restore from Backup or Set Up as New Apple Watch; I’ve used a number of Apple Watch fashions up to now, however I went with the recent begin choice. It’ll then ask whether or not you propose to put on it in your left or proper wrist, a standard query when establishing most wearables. 

If you have vision problems, you can make the text size quite large


If in case you have imaginative and prescient issues, you can also make the textual content measurement fairly giant

The following steps take a few minutes, as your telephone connects to the watch and indicators into your account. After agreeing to Apple’s Phrases and Situations, you’ve gotten the choice to enter your iTunes Retailer password to make use of Apple Music from the watch (you may skip this step in the event you favor). It then offers you the choice to pick out a font measurement and arrange a Passcode, each of which you’ll change through the Settings app on the watch. Subsequent, it asks if you wish to set up all obtainable apps out of your telephone or select which of them you need to add later. It’s also possible to choose whether or not you need apps to seem within the conventional grid view (a bunch of round icons) or an inventory view (which is extra organized however requires extra scrolling) if you press the Digital Crown. From there, simply look forward to it to complete syncing together with your telephone, and you have to be good to go. 

New Watch Faces

Should you’re like me, the very first thing you may do after establishing your Apple Watch is spend manner an excessive amount of time looking, choosing, and customizing watch faces. The Collection 7’s giant display affords an excellent canvas for the brand new Portraits watch face. I already detailed the way it works in my watchOS 8 arms on, so I will not reiterate it right here. 

The Collection 7 offers you entry to 2 unique watch face choices, each of which spotlight the advantages of its bigger show: Contour and Modular Duo. 

The Contour and Modular Duo watch faces are only available on the Series 7


The Contour and Modular Duo watch faces are solely obtainable on the Collection 7

Contour (pictured on the prime of this assessment) is a mid-century-inspired analog watch face with groovy wanting numerals, set in a customized font on the sting of the show, emphasizing its measurement and super-thin borders. The face barely modifications to spotlight the present hour, making it a bit simpler to learn. You possibly can customise the dial colour and add two problems (such because the date and climate) to the Contour watch face. 

The Modular Duo watch face


The Modular Duo options two giant problems, together with the time and a smaller complication on the prime
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

Modular Duo options two giant problems, together with the time and a smaller complication on the prime. You possibly can choose no matter you need for the three problems, in addition to an accent colour. The massive problems show additional element; if you choose Exercise, for example, it exhibits a graphical illustration, hour by hour, as a substitute of simply your rings. The massive World Clock complication exhibits the time in your chosen metropolis together with a map of the world indicating which elements are in daylight and nighttime hours. The massive Climate complication exhibits a five-day forecast, Calendar exhibits your subsequent appointment, and Coronary heart Price exhibits a graph of your coronary heart’s beats per minute that day.  

Similar Battery Life, However Fees Quicker

Apple says the Collection 7 lasts for 18 hours on a cost, similar to the Collection 6, Watch SE, and Collection 3. In my testing, it beat Apple’s estimate, as did the Collection 6 final 12 months.

With the always-on show enabled, the Collection 7 lasted 29 hours earlier than I bought a notification that the battery was all the way down to 10%. I had Do Not Disturb on more often than not, which prevents notifications from lighting up the show, extending battery life. 

Naturally, battery life will fluctuate primarily based on use. Monitoring a exercise with GPS, disabling Bluetooth in your iPhone, and even simply elevating your wrist to have a look at the show so much will trigger battery drain. 

The Series 7 comes with a new Magnetic Fast Charge USB-C cable, but you'll need your own power adapter


The Collection 7 comes with a brand new Magnetic Quick Cost USB-C cable, however you want your personal energy adapter
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

Although it would not win any longevity awards, the Collection 7 affords about the identical battery life as its major opponents. The Galaxy Watch4 lasted nearly 24 hours with the always-on show enabled in my testing. Should you’re looking for a longer-lasting smartwatch, the Fitbit Versa 3 guarantees greater than six days of battery life on a cost, but it surely’s additionally far much less superior by way of what it may possibly do.

On a extra optimistic observe, because of its new charging structure, the Collection 7 juices up rapidly. With its new USB-C compatibility, the watch costs 33% sooner than the Collection 6. Simply 45 minutes on its fast-charging puck takes it from lifeless to 80% battery life. Should you’re operating low on battery life on the finish of the day, popping it on the charger for simply eight minutes offers you sufficient juice for eight hours of sleep monitoring. 

Higher for Seaside Journeys and Baking

Apart from the bigger show, the Collection 7’s greatest improve is its improved sturdiness. It is the primary Apple Watch with an IP6X certification, that means it’s very dustproof. That is the best certifiable stage of mud safety, so that you should not have to fret about sand, mud particles, or flour moving into the watch and breaking it. In different phrases, the subsequent time you head out to the seashore, hop on the mountain bike trails, and even bake a cake, you may maintain the Collection 7 in your wrist with out fear. 

This new certification gave me peace of thoughts throughout a current journey to the nail salon. Because the technician filed my nails with a drill, I did not have to fret when particulate matter flew in all places. Furthermore, as somebody who lives close to the shore, dustproofing is a very welcome improve, as I’ve shied away from carrying my earlier Apple Watches to the seashore. 

The Series 7 is the first totally dust-proof Apple Watch


The Collection 7 is the primary completely dustproof Apple Watch
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

The Collection 7 additionally incorporates a extra crack resistant entrance crystal than any of its predecessors, that means it is tougher to shatter the display. At its tallest level, the Collection 7’s Ion-X glass is over 50% thicker than that of the Collection 6. Apple additionally offers the crystal right here a flat base, which helps to extend sturdiness. 

The watch retains its predecessor’s WR50 ranking, that means it is water-resistant to 164 toes. Apple says it is secure for shallow-water actions like swimming in a pool or the ocean; the Exercise app affords monitoring choices for each. It’s also possible to put on it within the bathe or a sizzling tub. Make sure you take it off earlier than scuba diving, waterskiing, or some other actions that contain “high-velocity water or submersion beneath shallow depth,” Apple warns(Opens in a brand new window)

No New Well being Revolutions

The Collection 7 would not provide any new well being or health options you may’t get on the Collection 6. Nonetheless, it gives a strong suite of wellness instruments, together with Apple’s motivating Exercise, Train, and Stand rings, in addition to integration with the corporate’s Health+ exercise streaming service. I additionally like that it may possibly show you how to observe your interval and fertility home windows, and maintain you trustworthy when washing your arms with an computerized 20-second countdown timer. 

Tracking an early-morning NordicTrack Vault core workout on the Series 7


Monitoring an early-morning NordicTrack Vault core exercise on the Collection 7
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

On the subject of well being monitoring, Samsung’s newest flagship smartwatches, the Galaxy Watch4 and Watch4 Traditional, have a slight higher hand for his or her new physique composition and snore monitoring options, which are not obtainable on the Collection 7. If you put on one in every of Samsung’s watches to mattress and place your smartphone in your nightstand, they work collectively to pay attention for loud night breathing and might even document it. The Apple Watch can already monitor your sleep and in a single day respiration, so I hope Cupertino provides snore monitoring sooner or later. 

The Watch4 sequence additionally incorporates a BioActive Sensor, which may assess your physique composition utilizing a course of generally employed by sensible scales referred to as bioelectric impedance evaluation (BIA). After a 15-second scan, the watch shows your skeletal muscle mass, fats mass, physique fats proportion, physique mass index (BMI), physique water mass, and basal metabolic charge (BMR). It additionally exhibits whether or not you fall throughout the low, regular, or excessive vary for every metric. 

The Apple Watch offers no shortage of pre-installed and third-party apps. Left to right: Apple Watch Series 7, Series 6


The Apple Watch affords no scarcity of preinstalled and third-party apps (Left to proper: Apple Watch Collection 7, Collection 6)
(Picture: Angela Moscaritolo)

Whereas the Watch4 sequence affords extra well being improvements, the Collection 7 has a significant benefit in relation to third-party apps. Even with a current swap to Put on OS, Samsung’s watches are lacking many well-liked apps obtainable on the Apple Watch, together with Audible, CNN, Fb Messenger, ESPN, Runkeeper, Starbucks, The Climate Channel, and Uber. At this level, Apple’s watchOS nonetheless has the widest collection of third-party apps by far.

Fortunate Quantity 7

The Apple Watch Collection 7 builds upon its class-leading predecessor with a bigger display, sooner charging, and improved sturdiness. Between the {hardware} updates, ample well being and security options, and unmatched third-party app choice, it affords one of the best smartwatch expertise you may get at present, incomes it our Editors’ Alternative award.

Should you already personal an Apple Watch Collection 6, nevertheless, you needn’t rush out and purchase the Collection 7. Whereas the bigger display makes it simpler to learn textual content and faucet buttons and gives a extra stunning canvas on your watch face of alternative, that is actually essentially the most vital change from the earlier mannequin. In any other case, they provide the identical wonderful consumer expertise.

The one comparable non-Apple smartwatches we have examined are the $249.99 Samsung Galaxy Watch4 and $349.99 Watch4 Traditional. As a result of these watches work solely with Android telephones and the Collection 7 and different Apple Watches work solely with iPhones, one of the best smartwatch for you will depend on what telephone you personal.

Lastly, remember that for all their spectacular options, Apple’s and Samsung’s smartwatches provide solely one-day battery life. If that is one in every of your major issues, we propose the Editors’ Alternative-winning $229.95 Fitbit Versa 3, which affords much less in the best way of third-party apps and feels a bit much less refined, however lasts for days on a cost. 

The Backside Line

With extra display actual property, improved sturdiness, and sooner charging, the Apple Watch Collection 7 retains its crown as one of the best smartwatch in the marketplace.

Apple Fan?

Join our Weekly Apple Transient for the most recent information, opinions, suggestions, and extra delivered proper to your inbox.

This text could comprise promoting, offers, or affiliate hyperlinks. Subscribing to a e-newsletter signifies your consent to our Phrases of Use and Privateness Coverage. It’s possible you’ll unsubscribe from the newsletters at any time.



Supply hyperlink