The overall design hasn’t changed, but the OLED screen functionality has, and the Apple Watch Series 5 embraces a feature we’ve been asking for since the beginning – an always-on display, so you can glance at the watch just like you can an analogue timepiece or most other smartwatches.
Rather than going black when not active, as has been the case since the first Apple Watch, the Watch now dims slightly, allowing you to conserve battery, but still see the information on the screen. The difference is stark especially if you’re one of those people who likes to keep an eye on the time without having to vigorously move your wrist every time you want to do so. Whether the screen is on or off the high-contrast screen really pops showing those vibrant colours be it your exercise rings or a message from a friend.
We’ve also found we can stop doing that crazy wrist flick that you see Apple Watch owners do, and means on a run when you raise your hand the screen is on ready for you to read without delay.
To help conserve battery and make things easier to see at a glance, many of the Watch faces change colour when not active. The new California watch face goes from a coloured face to black and white for example, Mickey all but disappears apart from his hands, while others lose other elements accordingly.
You can of course turn the always-on functionality off. Understanding that some “complications” offer sensitive data, there is a setting that can be hidden when the screen isn’t active so you aren’t revealing calendar appointments to all on sundry.
According to Apple, the feature won’t affect the battery life, but of course it does. The Apple Watch Series 4 has constantly delivered a good day and half of battery life for us since 2018, and so far, the Apple Watch Series 5 only gets us to the end of the day (around 18 hours). That’s disappointing, but still in line with Apple’s promises. But be warned: if you forget to charge it nightly you won’t make it through to the next day.
Some of that comes down to having a vibrant and glorious display and since the bump in size on the Series 4, there are few watches that can really compare on quality of display – although that’s what eats into the battery.
- Always-On Retina display with Force Touch
- LTPO OLED display (1000 nits)
- Built-in Compass
- S5 with 64-bit dual-core processor
- W3 Apple wireless chip
- Barometric altimeter
- Optical heart sensor
- Electrical heart sensor
- Accelerometer up to 32 g-forces
- Improved ambient light sensor
- Capacity 32GB
- Digital Crown with haptic feedback
- Ion-X strengthened glass
- Sapphire crystal and ceramic back
- Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n 2.4GHz)
- Bluetooth 5.0
- Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery
- Up to 18 hours of battery life
- Water resistant 50 meters
WHAT’S IN THE BOX
- Apple Watch Series 5 44mm
- Band (can be configured for S/M or M/L length)
- 1m Magnetic Charging Cable
- 5w USB Power Adapter
- Operating System: iOS
- Product Warranty: N\A
- SKU: AP044MT09EYCANAFAMZ