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Apple Announces Apple Watch Series 5 With Always-On Retina Display and New Titanium Case Option

Apple today announced the Apple Watch Series 5, alongside watchOS 6. Series 5 watches feature an always-on display, meaning you won't have to rely on wrist raises to read the ‌Apple Watch‌ screen. There's also a built-in compass and international emergency calling as the new standout features.


The always-on display allows the time and other important information to be visible at all times. Every watch face was optimized for the new display and to preserve battery life, featuring the ability to dim the screen when your wrist is down and return to full brightness with a raise or tap.

Despite the always-on display, Apple said that the ‌Apple Watch‌ Series 5 still features an all-day 18-hour battery life.
“We’ve seen ‌Apple Watch‌ have a meaningful impact on our customers’ lives and we’re excited to deliver even more capabilities with ‌Apple Watch‌ Series 5 and ‌watchOS 6‌,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer. “The seamless integration of new hardware and software delivers an enhanced experience that makes it even easier to stay active and connected to the people and information users care about.”
There are also updated location features that provide greater navigation tools, like the built-in compass and updated Maps app. The compass app provides heading, incline, latitude, longitude, and current elevation, and it can be added as a complication to the watch face.


Series 5 cellular models include international calls to emergency services, regardless of where the device was originally purchased or if the cellular plan was activated.

The new lineup also comes with a titanium case, and returning styles include stainless steel, aluminum, and ceramic. There are also the expected ‌Apple Watch‌ Nike and ‌Apple Watch‌ Hermès models.


With a new ‌Apple Watch‌ comes the latest updated to watchOS, which is watchOS6, including new health and fitness features like a Cycle Tracking app for women. There's a Noise app to understand the ambient sound levels in environments such as concerts, and Activity Trends to provide a long-term view of your activity patterns.


‌watchOS 6‌ also has dynamic new watch faces like Meridian, Modular Compact, and Solar Dial. Apple is also finally letting you customize exactly which ‌Apple Watch‌ case and watch band you buy from the get-go with ‌Apple Watch‌ Studio. With this, you can pick your preferred case and band combination when you initially purchase the ‌Apple Watch‌ Series 5.

‌Apple Watch‌ Series 5 with GPS starts at $399 while the GPS and cellular models start at $499. You can order your Series 5 device today on Apple.com, and the watches will then begin to ship on Friday, September 20. Apple has discontinued the ‌Apple Watch‌ Series 4 and is keeping the Series 3 around at the entry-level price of $199 for GPS and $299 for GPS and cellular.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 6
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Buy Now)

Top Rated Comments

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10 weeks ago
I bet the people who complained about the Apple Watch not having an always on display are going to be here complaining about how this will affect battery life :rolleyes:
Rating: 22 Votes
10 weeks ago
No word on processor upgrades? Interesting. I doubt this will be enough to entice S4 owners.
Rating: 13 Votes
10 weeks ago

Low on testosterone or menopausal design, form does not follow function, it should be circular, aod that is old news in galaxy watches.

... is it that you have low testosterone levels and need external devices to provide it for you? The Apple Watch certainly doesn't need nor provide testosterone. Similarly, watches do not experience menopause. What are you on about?

Should be circular? Since when? For decades, watches had mechanical mechanisms with rotating hands that dictated mostly circular cases. That requirement is outdated. Smart watches present information, which fits better on a rectangular screen. Round is the exact opposite of "form follows function" for a smart watch - it's being round to be familiar to those who can't cope with a rectangular watch.

If galaxy watches suit you better, no one is stopping you from buying one.
Rating: 9 Votes
10 weeks ago
Always-on display, the watch forums will be dead now that complaint is negated.
Rating: 9 Votes
10 weeks ago

I feel like they could just include this on Series 4 with a software update....

Sure, if you want 4 hour battery life. They've switched to a different kind of screen that uses less power.
Rating: 8 Votes
10 weeks ago

Maybe if you wear this watch occasionally for fitness or workout it is fine, but for everyday watch it looks pathetic. Low on testosterone or menopausal design, form does not follow function, it should be circular, aod that is old news in galaxy watches. Come on apple, Steve Jobs should haunt you.

This is a terrible opinion. You should be ashamed to have expressed it publicly.
Rating: 7 Votes
10 weeks ago

I feel like they could just include this on Series 4 with a software update....


But if they did that, how would they get your money this Fall? It's a cash grab, plain and simple.
Rating: 7 Votes
10 weeks ago

Sorry if you didn't like my opinion, but I guess I am entitled to it even if it does not agree to yours.

It wasn't just that you want a circular design--I disagree with that, but it's a matter of taste. But you had to flaunt some sexism in the expression of that opinion. What in the world does the design have to do with hormones?

And the current form does follow function for me. I use almost exclusively modular watch faces that would make no sense on a circular watch. Neither would the Exercise app display as efficiently on a round watch. For me, the Watch is all about presenting information.
Rating: 6 Votes
10 weeks ago

I feel like they could just include this on Series 4 with a software update....


It has a new screen that can scale down to 1hz specifically to enable low energy always on display. This isn't accomplished with a software update. The Apple Watch 4's screen would be scanning continually at 60hz which would quickly drain the battery.
Rating: 5 Votes
10 weeks ago

No word on processor upgrades? Interesting. I doubt this will be enough to entice S4 owners.

The goal isn't to entice S4 owners, it's to entice S0/S1/S2/S3 owners (and new customers, of course).

I'm quite eager to replace my S0 with an always-on S5.
Rating: 4 Votes

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