Apple took the wraps off Apple Watch Ultra — describing the sports-oriented smartwatch as the most rugged and capable Apple Watch yet — during Wednesday’s Far Out event. Big, bulky and beautiful, it delivered on everything the rumor mill predicted and more.
Apple Watch Ultra is huge, with a bulky exterior, chunky buttons and a massive display. It boasts a tougher case, designed to withstand knocks from extreme sports, and a battery that can last the distance for endurance races. It features a new Depth Gauge app for scuba and free divers, improved GPS for running and cycling, a redesigned compass app for exploring, and even an 86-decibel siren to let people know if you get lost. Like the new Apple Watch Series 8 models, the Ultra comes with a temperature sensor.
Retailing at $799, Apple Watch Ultra is the Apple Watch that hardcore fitness fans have long been craving. But will its quirky, uncompromising looks catch on with mainstream audiences? Or is the Ultra destined to occupy a niche in the lineup?
When Apple Watch got a larger screen last year with the Series 7 update, most commentators just yawned. Apparently screen size isn’t everything. It’s what you do with your watch that counts.
So I was surprised to read recent rumors of an Apple Watch Pro with an even bigger screen. Supposedly, this larger model, with its tougher titanium case, will be ideal for extreme sports. But does a bigger screen really help when you’re bungee jumping? And could titanium ever be rugged enough to withstand whitewater rafting?
Something about all this doesn’t add up. Instead, I suspect Cupertino will position the Apple Watch Pro model as a wearable for endurance sports. A bigger watch means a bigger battery. And in endurance sports, you really need that extra juice.
Apple’s next big thing might not be a car or an AR headset. Thanks to a rule change announced this week by the Food and Drug Administration, Cupertino could soon add hearing aids to its product lineup. The potential market is huge, and Apple stands uniquely positioned to disrupt the status quo.
The new rules allow companies like Apple to sell hearing aids over the counter and online, so buyers can set them up in the comfort of their own homes. Previously, if you wanted to buy hearing aids, your only option was to make an appointment for a hearing test and fitting at a specialist store.
Wearables like Apple Watch monitor our bodies around the clock, providing health insights in real time. That’s a new and unprecedented development in medical technology. The benefits are already clear, as the report illustrates, with anecdotes about how Apple Watch has saved lives.
But anecdotal evidence is not the same as scientific research. By cherry-picking the best outcomes, anecdotes risk overlooking the bigger picture. Scientists must look at all the outcomes, not just the good ones. With that in mind, I took a closer look at the scientific studies cited in Apple’s report, to find out what they tell us about the impact Apple Watch is having on our health.
Imagine if Apple sold AirPods for $5,000, and they were so buggy they kept disconnecting from your iPhone. Sounds crazy, right? But that’s the reality faced by me and millions of other hearing aid users today.
Apple offers a solution for hearing aids called Made for iPhone (MFi). This enables third-party hearing aids to work like regular AirPods. In hardware terms, there’s not much difference between them anyway these days. But while AirPods will set you back just $129, MFi hearing aids cost 30 times more, and they’re far less reliable.
The iPhone Health app’s Cycle Tracking feature provides a simple solution for logging menstrual cycles. If you menstruate, it’s an effective way to monitor your overall health and estimate when you’re most likely to get pregnant.
Given the personal nature of Cycle Tracking data, you need to be sure that it’s stored securely, away from prying eyes. The good news is, Apple’s security for health and fitness data is very robust. There are just a few things you need to know to ensure your data is safe.
Rumors of an Apple Watch Explorer Edition started last year, when Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported that Apple was working on ruggedized smartwatch designed specifically for athletes. Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, from TF International Securities, added fuel to the fire last December, claiming that an “extreme sports version” could debut in 2022.
This month at WWDC, Apple’s focus on new fitness features for watchOS 9 lent further credence to these rumors. As a fitness-fanatic myself, all this hype has got me pretty excited. It inspired me to create these Photoshop mockups, exclusively for Cult of Mac, to explore exactly what the Explorer Edition might look like.
When Apple TV 4K launched last year, it had fans salivating. But not for the sharper picture or faster processor. It was the new Siri Remote that caught everyone’s eye. Had Cupertino finally made a TV remote control that didn’t suck?
With its iPod-style scroll wheel, the second-generation Siri Remote promised to make scrolling through content effortless. In reality, the scroll wheel turned out to be hard to use, and lacked support from third-party apps like YouTube.
But don’t throw your remote at the TV just yet. When you get the hang of its quirks, the Siri Remote scroll wheel works surprisingly well. And you can use it with loads of essential apps, including Netflix, HBO Max and, of course, Apple TV+.
Apple revealed what it has up its sleeve for Apple Watch during its WWDC22 keynote Monday. watchOS 9 includes some fun new watch faces and various other minor additions. But the Workout app really stole the show with a host of welcome new features.
Apple is taking on fitness specialists like Garmin with prosumer experiences such as Heart Rate Zone training, Running Form Metrics, Custom Workouts and Kickboard Detection for swimmers. Could this newfound interest in elite fitness suggest a rugged Explorer Edition Apple Watch will debut in the fall?