Apple Watch Ultra review: the super-charged smartwatch

Apple Watch Ultra

Since its debut, the Apple Watch has become synonymous with wearable technology. Apple’s latest offering, the Apple Watch Ultra, has been touted as the most rugged and feature-packed iteration yet, designed specifically for athletes, explorers, and anyone demanding more from their smartwatch. Here’s our comprehensive review of the Apple Watch Ultra, complete with user feedback, performance statistics, and expert insights.

Design and Durability

The Apple Watch Ultra sports a 49mm Titanium case that speaks to its durability. It boasts a distinctive look that differentiates it from its predecessors. Its robust build is complemented by a flat sapphire crystal display, ensuring scratch resistance and readability even under direct sunlight. Engineered for extreme conditions, the watch has an enhanced water resistance of WR100 and EN13319 certification for scuba diving, appealing to aquatic adventurers Apple, 2023.

Enhanced Display and Battery Life

Richer and brighter than ever, the Apple Watch Ultra’s display supports up to 2000 nits, doubling the brightness of previous models, which elevates outdoor visibility. Perhaps most impressive is the leap in battery life, with the Ultra boasting up to 36 hours on a single charge under typical usage and potentially up to 60 hours with an upcoming low power setting—statistics that rival many smartwatches on the market CNET, 2023.

Health and Fitness Features

For fitness enthusiasts, the Ultra delivers an array of features. Its advanced sensor suite accurately tracks heart rate, blood oxygen levels, and temperature changes. The built-in GPS is upgraded with precision dual-frequency support that promises accurate location tracking for hikers and outdoor runners. Users have cited the Action button, which provides instant access to a multitude of customizable features, as a game-changer for workouts and expeditions The Verge, 2023.

Safety and Connectivity

The Ultra prioritizes safety with the introduction of an 86-decibel siren to alert others in case of an emergency and a new dual-band Wi-Fi connection improving connectivity. It also includes a cellular model as standard, ensuring that you can stay connected even without your iPhone. These safety features have been lauded by users who venture into remote areas.

User Experience and Apps

The broader app ecosystem remains one of the Ultra’s biggest selling points. With watchOS 9, users experience new and enhanced applications, with third-party apps particularly benefiting from the Ultra’s superior hardware capabilities. The native Wayfinder watch face with a built-in compass directly caters to the exploratory nature of its intended user base.

Pricing and Value

The Apple Watch Ultra is priced at a premium, with its starting cost significantly higher than its Series 7 or SE counterparts. While the hike in price can be justified with its premium features, the cost factor does make it an investment specific to users who will fully utilize its expanded capabilities.

Perspectives from the Community

Fitness enthusiasts have praised the durability and specialized features for outdoor activities, while others see the watch as an extravagant extension of the regular Apple Watch, not necessary for the everyday user. The reviews from tech communities like MacRumors and Tom’s Guide have agreed that while it’s an impressive piece of technology, it may be overkill for casual users or those primarily interested in health-focused features.

The Apple Watch Ultra pushes the boundaries of what’s expectable from a smartwatch, with its reinforced design, longevity, and bespoke features tailored to the adventurous. Whether it’s worth the steep price tag will depend on your lifestyle and how much you’re willing to pay for the convenience and capabilities it offers.

As Apple continues to break ground in wearable tech, the Ultra serves as a testament to how far the market has evolved, setting a high bar for a niche audience that seeks performance, resilience, and connectivity wrapped around their wrist.