Apple Watch upgrade season is upon me

My Watch (which I think is an S7) is starting to experience serious battery issues. I can’t make it through a day without charging a couple times now. Recently, I’ve been increasing the amount of time I spend exercising, and I’ve been using the Watch to track my sleep (so I can use Gentler Streak to tell me how hard I should push during workouts), so charging is sporadic.

But today, I charged in while showering in the morning. Then again at 11-11:30 this morning (got it close to 100%). Then again at 10PM for a few minutes because it was at 10% and my wife and I could finally go for a night time walk and catch up on our day. And now it’s charging again before bed so it’ll make it through the night.

I could get the battery replaced, but I have developed a habit of destroying batteries quickly (my 1 year old MacBook Pro has a battery health of 86% already).

Now I’m strongly contemplating the Ultra, mostly for the extra battery mojo.

Does anybody know if there are good reasons to wait until September this year? We’re close to new watch season, but still 3 months away…


There have been rumours that Apple may consider a new band locking mechanism for the tenth generation of the Watch, supposedly for savings in space, which would render all existing bands incompatible. I would not be surprised if they do this, as the existing system has been with us for so many years now, and as they may want to do something new for what will officially be the tenth generation.

My barely over a-year-old Watch 8 is also now performing poorly in terms of battery life, worse than the Apple Watch 3 I had for five years. Battery health is down to 85% in some 15 months, which I consider pretty bad.

There’s a rumor that Apple is adding a blood pressure monitoring sensor as well.

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There are also rumors that there will be a complete redesign of the entire watch (like the iPhone X for iPhone); not just the band locking mechanism.

I have heard these rumours too, but one would think we’d have seen a case design slip out from the manufacturers by now like we do with the phones if they were so different.

My Series 6 is down to 77% battery health. It ranges from 8-20% at 10pm and has turned off by the end of a long day a few time.

I was going to get a series 9, but life stuff happened. I’d love for the series 10/X to have another processor bump. Another health sensor wouldn’t hurt either, especially if the oximeter patent situation isn’t solved by then.

Serious question: How often do you need to check your blood pressure? I’ve been on BP meds for years and my doctor wants me to check it once a week.

He says checking it too often can cause anxiety which leads to higher BP.

Yeah, I wouldn’t mind another health sensor either. And if they’re using a 3nm chip, they might have more space for it. But knowing Apple, that space would get taken up by a redesign to make everything smaller.

In Canada, we still have that sensor activated (what a dumb lawsuit), so I really don’t know what I’d like. I don’t need it personally, but blood sugar readings seem like the holy grail to me, and I hope they get there one day.

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Stuff like this will never not be funny to me. I have had my own minor health problem with my ear that led to this statement: “so if your ear starts uncontrollably throbbing for hours, don’t be stressed, because stress could be what’s causing it, so it’s best to try and relax.” Oh, perfect.


Rumour maybe but they have a published patent on how BPM could be integrated into an Apple Watch.

Personally I could not wait for it to appear and instead purchased an Apple Watch 9 and a Withings BPM connecting both to my iPhone.

It occurs to me that my biggest issue is the potential new watch band.

Right now I use a 41mm watch. If I move up to an Ultra now, I have a few bands I wear basically every day (Milanese, a workout band, and a sleeping band). If I have to re-buy them now, and then re-buy them in a couple years after a band redesign, that’ll feel ridiculous if I miss the redesign by just a couple months.

On the other hand, a redesign might give Apple the opportunity to redesign some beloved bands. Like my precious Milanese loop. I don’t want that design to change; it’s perfect for me.

Decisions, decisions.

If there is no redesign this year, I’d be hardpressed (beyond better Siri and better battery) to think of anything that would meaningfully improve my (already excellent) Watch experience. The Watch is almost as important to me as the iPhone; I love that thing and would replace it immediately if it broke.

Basically the White Coat Syndrome.


Yes. In only three months there will be new models that will have some possibly amazing new features, maybe better battery life and/or a new or modified design, and will get OS and security updates for a year longer.

And if you’re anything like me, there’s a very high likelihood you’ll realize that if you hadn’t been so impatient and just waited—3 months isn’t so long—you could have been wearing the latest and greatest for a whole year.

I’m happy with my Series 9, but at this point I wouldn’t buy it because the 10 is just around the corner, and I’m sure I’d feel the same if I had the Ultra 2.

In the unlikely event you don’t like the new models, you’ll get a much better deal on a current one three months from now.

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Also, this comment has me thinking that maybe the new chip in the new watches will include some level of support for Apple Intelligence, which the current ones apparently don’t.

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Apple only mentions the Mac, iPad, and iPhone on their AI page.

Yes, but there are current models in all those categories that can run Apple Intelligence.

No current Watch can, and they may not want to tip their hand about an unannounced model and its processor.

I think that @Synchronicity is right, but at this point I’m charging the Watch multiple times a day and before I go to sleep. It just can’t hold a charge. Today I have put it on a charger 3 times and a fourth is coming up before I go to sleep so it has enough juice for sleep tracking.

So my options are:

  • learn to loathe this thing and its battery in the next few months, or
  • replace it a little off cycle and live with it

It’s a business expense for me (at least, a portion of it is) because it’s a communications device. In the worst case scenario, the next version of the Watch has some feature that’s so unbelievable that I just upgrade to it (which is unlikely for me, to be honest, because most of the rumoured sensors are appealing to an older demographic than me. I have no use for blood pressure tracking and won’t for a few years yet). If I trade in whatever I get now for a new one later in the year, that sounds ridiculous but the drop off in its value would make the write off to steep from an accounting perspective that it wouldn’t really cost me anything come tax season.

(FWIW, I happen to be at a magical spot in my tax bracket as a Canadian sole proprietor where my expenses are nearly completely written off come tax season. Either the government gets the money or I spend it.)

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Have you considered replacing the battery? You could then sell it for more money (almost brand-new battery!) in the fall or keep it as a much more useful backup device.

That’s a thought too. Worth considering.

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