Apple Watch Series 5: 2019 release date, UK price and how it compares to rivals like Fitbit

A view of the new Watch's features
A view of the new Watch's features

Apple has unveiled a fifth generation of its Apple Watch, with a bigger screen and thinner body. And it might just save your life. 

That, anyway, is Apple's pitch for the new Series 5 Watch, which was unveiled at the company's headquarters in Cupertino, California on Tuesday evening with a heavy emphasis on its medical capabilities. The same event also revealed the new iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max and iPhone 11.

The new watches feature an edge-to-edge display, allowing the watch’s display to be over 30pc larger than previous watches, and are thinner than previous versions.

They will be available in silver, gold and space grey finishes, as well as stainless steel variants. A new gold stainless steel version will also be released.

Apple Watch Series 5 release date

Pre-orders for the device on Apple's website have already opened, and Apple said it will go on sale on Friday, September 20.

Additionally, Watch OS 5, the latest version of its Apple's watch operating system, will be released for Series 3 and later devices on September 19, and for Series 1 and 2 watches later in the autumn.

A view of the new Watch's features
A view of the new Watch's features

Price and where to buy

The new Apple Watch Series 5 will be sold at a starting price of £399 for the GPS model, and £499 for the cellular version.

The Apple Series 3 will now see a price cut to £199, parking a tank squarely on Fitbit's lawn, and the cellular version will be £299. British customers can trade in their old watches for a gift card or a refund.

New features

The audience at Apple's giant, UFO-style headquarters was shown a series of videos by people who had had their lives saved by their Apple Watches, which had alerted them to a health problem or called the emergency services at the last minute.

The message was clear: the Apple Watch is now a tool for good health, with the ability to contact emergency services in over 150 countries, even without an iPhone nearby. This only applies to the celullar models, but will work even if your cell plan isn't yet activated.

The new operating system will also introduce new health features, most notably period and menstrual cycle tracking. Apple has been criticised by feminists for failing to build such a feature into the first versions of its health app, even though women are more likely to own an iPhone than men.

A Noise app will help users understand ambient sound levels at concerts and sporting events, and whether their ears could be damaged, while an app called Activity Trends on iPhone will allow people to track their activity patterns over time.

Jeff Williams, Apple's chief operating officer, speaks about the Apple Watch Series 4 at the Steve Jobs Theater during an event to announce new Apple products Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018, in Cupertino, California - Credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP
Apple's chief operating officer Jeff Williams with its new Apple Watch models Credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP

There will also be an always-on display, meaning you will always be able to see the time and other pieces of data. To preserve battery life, the display will dim when the user's wrist is down, rather than switching off entirely.

Finally, users will now be able to customise their cases and wristbands. You can have a titanium Apple Watch, a stainless steel Watch, an aluminium Watch or a white ceramic Watch, plus numerous different bands.

Will you be buying the Apple Watch Series 5? Share your thoughts ahead of the launch of the fifth generation Apple Watch in the comments section below. 


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