At first glance, the Apple Watch Series 2 looks a lot like its predecessor, but the second generation wearable packs several big internal tweaks to add speed and utility.
The new watch was unveiled today, alongside another model called the Apple Watch Nike+, which is geared toward fitness enthusiasts.
“We think it will be especially popular with runners,” Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer said during a presentation today at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco.
According to NBC News, Apple says the watch is “completely re-engineered.” Here’s a look at five key changes coming to the second-generation wearable.
The Apple Watch Series 2 is waterproof at a depth of up to 50 meters. Swimmers can choose between pool swim and open water swim settings to accurately track their workouts. At the end of a workout, the watch’s speaker will eject any water, keeping the electronic components safe.
“That not only opens it up to swimmers but also people who might be paying $369 for something that could get ruined if they drop it in the toilet or a sink. I think that was a fear,” Patrick Moorhead, an analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy told NBC News.
While the Apple Watch Series 2 still relies on being tethered to the iPhone for many of its functions, runners will like the built-in GPS, allowing them to keep their iPhone at home for that feature.
One of the biggest complaints about the Apple Watch when it first came out was its speed. The second generation wearable packs a chip with double the graphics performance and battery life. Owners of a first generation Apple Watch can also get a speed upgrade with watchOS 3, a free software update Apple is set to roll out on September 13.
“I think with the new processor and watchOS 3, if everything works in real life like it did on stage, that is going to be the biggest improvement,” Moorhead said.
The new Apple Watch is brighter than ever, packing 1,000 nits, making it about twice as bright as its predecessor.
Pokemon Go is coming to the Apple Watch later this year. John Hanke, head of Niantic Labs, gave a demo of the new Pokemon experience. He added that the app, which was released in July, has already been downloaded 500 million times.
The new devices, which start at $369, will be available for preorders beginning this Friday and will ship on September 16. They’ll be joined by the first generation Apple Watch, which will be getting a price cut to $269 and a faster processor.