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Since its introduction in 2015, the Apple Watch has undergone pretty minor physical changes. That said, its internal components, tracking capabilities, and connectivity options have continued to evolve. Apple's focus on cutting-edge features and ever-expanding use cases has kept the Apple Watch at the head of the pack over the better part of a decade. But, despite the introduction of the cheaper Apple Watch SE, any Apple Watch model remains a significant investment.
Let us help you find the best possible price for whichever model you choose, whether it's the latest Apple Watch Series 7, the mid-range Apple Watch SE, or the still-great Apple Watch Series 3. We've gathered the best deals currently available below to help you purchase your iPhone's new best friend for the lowest possible price.
The newest, and arguably best, Apple Watch features a larger display that actually curves around the edges. This extra screen real estate allows for a new on-screen swipe keyboard and a series of watch faces designed to take advantage of the additional space. ZDNet's Jason Cipriani praised the "large, vibrant display" and faster charging offered by this generation.
Like its sibling, the Apple Watch Series 7 with GPS and cellular can track your sleep, fitness habits and goals, and more. With this Watch, you'll also get cellular service. So if you leave your cell at home, you can still take calls, listen to your music, and more.
The Apple Watch SE is Apple's mid-range model. Although it was designed to be a budget-friendly alternative to the numbered Series releases, the SE's continued popularity as the cheapest option has seen the SE positioned as something of a happy medium between modern features and lowered pricing.
Despite being a few years old now, the Apple Watch Series 3 still provides an exceptional smartwatch experience at the lowest cost you can currently buy one of Apple's wearables. This makes it the perfect solution for those unsure of how much they'll really use a smartwatch, or those buying an Apple Watch for younger relatives.
Walmart has the cheapest price on this great smartwatch right now. The larger 42mm band will cost you $30 more, but it's still on sale.
The defining upgrade of the Series 7 is its new, larger display that actually spills over the curved edges of the Apple Watch's glass. It is also the only one of the three that offers an always-on display, with both the SE and Series 3 requiring you to lift your wrist to use the display.
The Series 7 also supports blood oxygen measurements and ECGs, whereas both of the others are limited to standard heart rate tracking.
The main variables the SE maintains over the Series 3, meanwhile, include the SE's optional LTE support, the addition of fall detection on the SE, and support for Apple's Family Setup feature, which allows families to share app and platform access across supported devices.
Battery life for all three devices is identical at 18 hours.
This depends entirely on a few factors.
First, are you the kind of person that has your iPhone on you at all times? If so, the usefulness of an LTE model is questionable, and probably something you can skip.
Second, do you enjoy running, biking, or doing other outdoor activities? If you do, an LTE-enabled Apple Watch can be a great way to make sure you stay connected in case of an emergency, without having to endanger your iPhone or have the extra weight on you during your athletic pursuits.
Lastly, are you willing to pay for a separate LTE connection on a monthly basis? Some potential buyers don't realize that carriers require a separate subscription for LTE support. While this is usually only around $10 to $15, depending on the provider, it is an added expense that will significantly raise the total cost of ownership over the lifetime of an Apple Watch.
Aside from the standard silicone Sport Band that's been included with the Apple Watch since its debut, most other bands add a significant amount to the cost of the device. Options are available ranging from the no-clasp silicone and Braided Solo Loops ($50 to $100), to designer options in leather and steel that can add hundreds of dollars to the cost of the device.
If you're looking to save some cash on your Apple Watch, we'd recommend buying one of the widely-available options with a Sport Loop band and upgrading to a band of your choice after purchase. Many third-party manufacturers are now making bands that fit the Apple Watch. And even if they don't, it's easy to acquire a third-party adapter that will match your Apple Watch's case while allowing it to accept traditional watch bands as well. This not only opens up your Apple Watch to a much wider selection of looks but also provides access to far cheaper alternatives that are nearly identical to Apple's offerings.
Whether you opt for one of Apple's first-party offerings or a third-party band or adapter, it is vital that you ensure you're choosing one designed for your specific case size. The Apple Watch has diverged by the better part of a centimeter in size over the course of its generations, and an incorrectly sized band will either look completely out of place or simply not fit at all. Also, make sure what you choose is of good quality. Losing a $400+ smartwatch because you wanted to save an extra $10 on a cheaper band isn't going to make you happy in the long run.
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