The Apple Watch Series 8 is gearing up to arrive over the next few months, and it's rumored to introduce a new, high-end "rugged" model for extreme sports with an even larger display. How big is too big?
Sources speaking to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman (via the Power On newsletter) state the Apple Watch "Pro" will be notably bigger than the Apple Watch Series 7. In fact, so big that "it might only appeal to a subset of customers," Gurman says. As previously reported, the new rugged model is expected to have a 7% screen area increase, measuring nearly 2 inches diagonally with a 410 x 502-pixel resolution display.
While Gurman previously indicated the smartwatch would keep the design aesthetic of the current Apple Watch model, sources state it will have a fresh look. "It will be an evolution of the current rectangular shape, and not circular," but it won't boast the previously rumored flat sides.
Since it's designed for extreme sports, the "Pro" model is said to be made of a more durable formulation of titanium. Gurman previously hinted at this, claiming the rugged model will use a strong metal material instead of the usual aluminum, along with a more shatter-resistant display.
With the introduction of watchOS 9, we already have an idea of what this rumored rugged model will offer. This included the addition of heart rate zones, allowing you to target a specific intensity for your workout and let your watch notify you if you are "in the zone." Additional fitness tracking updates include the ability to see splits, intervals, and elevation changes when running or hiking. These new data tracking features could also be used in the different extreme sports the rugged model is expected to track.
As for other features tipped to arrive, the Series 8 is expected to have a new body-temperature sensor and a new low-power mode so it can last multiple days without a charge. Plus, even longer battery life. However, Gurman believes that the blood pressure sensor likely won't arrive until 2025, while the glucose measurements feature is still a while away.
We won't know for sure if a new higher-end Apple Watch model arrives until later this fall, but a rugged Apple Watch may be more appealing to many extreme athletes. Will the display be too big? Only time will tell. In the meantime, check out our Apple Watch buyer's guide.