Apple Watch Series 7 Lacks Hidden Diagnostic Port, Likely Uses Wireless Data Transfer Instead

Last month, FCC filings revealed that Apple Watch Series 7 models are equipped with a new module that enables 60.5GHz wireless data transfer. This module is not advertised on Apple's website and is likely for Apple's internal use only.

apple watch series 3 diagnostic port

The hidden diagnostic port on an Apple Watch Series 3

MacRumors has since confirmed with The Verge's Dieter Bohn and others that the Apple Watch Series 7 lacks a hidden diagnostic port that was located in the bottom band slot on all previous Apple Watch models. Apple used the port for diagnostic purposes when servicing an Apple Watch, such as to restore watchOS over a wired connection with a special tool.

The lack of a diagnostic port on Apple Watch Series 7 models likely explains the addition of the 60.5GHz wireless data transfer module. FCC filings indicated that the module is only activated when the Apple Watch is placed on a proprietary magnetic dock with a corresponding 60.5GHz module, so it sounds like Apple might use this dock to perform diagnostics or restore watchOS wirelessly on Series 7 models.

It's also worth noting that Series 7 models feature IP6X-rated dust resistance, so perhaps the diagnostic port's removal helped with that to some degree.

Apple Watch Series 7 models will begin arriving to customers and launch in stores this Friday, October 15. Key features include larger displays with 41mm and 45mm case sizes, enhanced durability with IP6X-rated dust resistance, up to 33% faster charging with an included USB-C fast charging cable, and new aluminum colors.

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 7
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Neutral)
Related Forum: Apple Watch

Top Rated Comments

kalafalas Avatar
8 months ago
I’m an apple fanboy, and can usually look the other way/find reasoning for Apples BS they like to pull.

But if they make a portless iPhone, using short-range-wireless like this new tech in the watch for data transfer through MagSafe at usb 2 speeds, instead of just putting a stupid USB-C 3.1 port, that will be probably the first iPhone I’m not interested in getting at all. It’s just an over-engineered solution to a problem that doesn’t exist.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MrRom92 Avatar
8 months ago
A portless iPhone would also mean there is no way to connect headphones. Unless they make some kind of detached wireless device that combines a DAC and headphone amp. That might actually be cool but it doesn’t seem like they can even make wireless headphones lossless, let alone something that has to drive a serious set of cans. No thanks.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
UltimateSyn Avatar
8 months ago

It's also worth noting that Series 7 models feature IP6X-rated dust resistance, so perhaps the diagnostic port's removal helped with that to some degree.
That was my first thought, too.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
LarrySW Avatar
8 months ago

It's also worth noting that Series 7 models feature IP6X-rated dust resistance, so perhaps the diagnostic port's removal helped with that to some degree.
This seems likely
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mikethebigo Avatar
8 months ago
Seems like something we could see used for a portless iPhone too.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BootsWalking Avatar
8 months ago

I’m an apple fanboy, and can usually look the other way/find reasoning for Apples BS they like to pull.

But if they make a portless iPhone, using short-range-wireless like this new tech in the watch for data transfer through MagSafe at usb 2 speeds, instead of just putting a stupid USB-C 3.1 port, that will be probably the first iPhone I’m not interested in getting at all. It’s just an over-engineered solution to a problem that doesn’t exist.
I'm not seeing how the removal of an Apple-proprietary diagnostic port on their watch has any relation to Apple removing their universal user-facing power/data port.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

Apple Watch Series 7 Pink and Green Feature

Prosser: Apple Watch Series 7 to Ship in Mid-October

Thursday September 30, 2021 3:31 pm PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 7 will ship in mid-October with pre-orders to begin "as early as next week," claims leaker Jon Prosser, citing sources "familiar with the release." Apple introduced the Apple Watch Series 7 at its September "California Streaming" event alongside the iPhone 13 models, but at the time, said the new Apple Watch would ship later in the fall. There has been no official...
Apple Watch Series 7 Pink and Green Feature

First Apple Watch Series 7 Orders Arriving to Customers in New Zealand and Australia

Thursday October 14, 2021 3:13 pm PDT by
It's Friday, October 15 in New Zealand and Australia, which means it's Apple Watch Series 7 launch day. Customers in that part of the world are always the first to get their hands on new devices due to time zone differences. Apple Watch Series 7 models are now beginning to arrive to customers who pre-ordered on Friday, October 8, and new Apple Watch owners are sharing photos on Instagram,...
series 7 vs series6 screen size

New Image Offers Clearer Look at Apple Watch Series 7 Screen Size Compared to Series 6

Thursday October 14, 2021 2:27 am PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 7 officially hits the shelves and starts arriving with customers worldwide tomorrow. While we have seen media reviews of the new watch, we've yet to see a clear real-world comparison to last year's Apple Watch Series 6 until now. Apple says the new Apple Watch Series 7 features a 20% larger screen than the Series 6, primarily thanks to reduced bezels that allow the...
Apple Watch Series 7 Pink and Green Feature

Deals: Take Up to $200 Off Cellular Apple Watch Series 7 Models

Thursday October 21, 2021 8:12 am PDT by
Today we're tracking a few offers from carriers on cellular models of the new Apple Watch Series 7, which just launched last week. Many of the initial deals on these Series 7 models are still around today, from carriers like AT&T and Verizon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which...
91mmobile apple watch series 1

Apple Watch Series 7 Major Redesign Revealed

Friday August 27, 2021 3:07 am PDT by
A major redesign appears to be in store for the upcoming Apple Watch Series 7 models, based on recent reports. According to renders from 91mobiles that were reportedly obtained from supply chain sources, the Apple Watch Series 7 will offer a new design that mirrors the squared-off edges of the iPhone 12 lineup, iPad Pro, iPad Air, and 24-inch iMac. The Series 7 will also apparently be 1.7mm...
Apple Watch 7 Unreleased Feature Flat

Apple Watch Series 7 Production Will Reportedly Ramp Up at End of September, New MacBook Pros Expected Later in Fall

Thursday September 2, 2021 6:26 am PDT by
Following a report earlier this week from Nikkei Asia that claimed volume production of upcoming Apple Watch Series 7 models had been delayed due to manufacturing challenges, a new report has offered a more specific timeframe. According to a paywalled preview of a DigiTimes report, suppliers are scheduled to ramp up Apple Watch Series 7 production starting at the end of September. That...
apple watch dock 1

Proprietary Dock Apple Uses to Wirelessly Troubleshoot Apple Watch Series 7 Surfaces in Regulatory Database

Friday October 15, 2021 10:26 am PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 7 models lack a diagnostic port under the band, which means Apple has to use another means to troubleshoot and restore Apple Watches that come in for repair. Apple Watch Series 7 models are equipped with a module that enables 60.5GHz wireless data transfer as we discovered in FCC documents in September, with that data transfer capability designed to be used with a...
Apple Watch 7 Unreleased Feature Flat

When is the Apple Watch Series 7's Release Date?

Thursday September 9, 2021 2:00 am PDT by
Apple announced the Apple Watch Series 7, the company's latest and most advanced smartwatch, at its September "California Streaming" event, revealing the long-awaited features of the new device. The Apple Watch Series 7 was announced alongside the iPhone 13 lineup, featuring a larger design, a bigger Retina display with slimmer display borders, improved durability, faster charging, new color ...

Popular Stories

Prosser Series 8 3

Apple Watch Series 8 Rumored to Feature New Design With Flat Display

Wednesday May 18, 2022 6:21 am PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 8 could feature an all-new design with a flat display, according to the leaker known as "ShrimpApplePro." In his latest video on the YouTube channel Front Page Tech, Jon Prosser highlighted information from ShrimpApplePro that suggests the Apple Watch Series 8 could feature a flat display in what seems to be a design originally rumored for the Apple Watch Series 7. ...
anker 563 dock ports

Anker's Latest USB-C Docking Station Brings Triple-Display Support to M1 Macs

Wednesday May 18, 2022 7:06 am PDT by
While Apple's early M1-based Macs can only officially support a single external display, there are ways around the limitation. Anker is launching a new 10-in-1 USB-C docking station today which delivers just that. The Anker 563 USB-C dock includes two HDMI ports and a DisplayPort port, and it leverages DisplayLink to carry multiple video signals over a single connection. Given that this hub...
macOS Monterey 2

Apple Releases macOS Monterey 12.4 With Support for Studio Display Webcam Update

Monday May 16, 2022 10:10 am PDT by
Apple today released macOS Monterey 12.4, the fourth major update to the macOS Monterey operating system that launched in October 2021. macOS Monterey 12.4 comes over two months after the launch of macOS Monterey 12.3, an update that added Universal Control. The ‌‌‌‌‌macOS Monterey‌‌ 12.4 update can be downloaded on all eligible Macs using the Software Update section of System...
Whatsapp Feature

WhatsApp to Let Users Leave Group Chats 'Silently' and View Rich Link Previews in Status Updates

Tuesday May 17, 2022 3:07 am PDT by
WhatsApp is working on a new feature that will allow users to "silently" leave group chats hosted by the messaging platform instead of all members of the group being notified when they do. As it stands, when someone leaves a group chat, WhatsApp announces their exit to the entire group, making the act of leaving very public. It's not possible right now to leave a group quietly, but WhatsApp...
apple data auction iphone privacy ad

Apple Highlights iPhone's Latest Privacy Features in New 'Data Auction' Ad

Wednesday May 18, 2022 9:00 am PDT by
Apple today shared a new ad highlighting iPhone privacy features like App Tracking Transparency and Mail Privacy Protection that are designed to give users more transparency and control when it comes to their personal data being collected. The ad revolves around a young woman named Ellie who discovers that her personal data is being sold at an auction house, with bids being placed on her...
airpodsproinear

Apple Facing Lawsuit After AirPods Allegedly Ruptured Child's Eardrums With Amber Alert

Tuesday May 17, 2022 11:40 am PDT by
Apple's AirPods ruptured the eardrums of a 12-year-old boy in 2020 when a loud Amber Alert was issued, according to a lawsuit filed against Apple in California (via Law360). The child, identified as B.G. in the filing, was watching a movie on Netflix on his iPhone in 2020 while wearing AirPods Pro. The AirPods Pro were allegedly set at a low volume, but an Amber Alert sounded without warning ...
apple store palo alto

Apple Reinstating Employee Mask Mandate at Approximately 100 U.S. Retail Stores

Tuesday May 17, 2022 11:11 am PDT by
Apple retail employees at around 100 stores will need to go back to wearing a mask while working, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Apple is mandating masks for employees again due to a rising number of COVID cases across the United States. Customers who visit an Apple Store are not required to wear a mask at this time, but Apple is continuing to recommend masks for all Apple Store...