It’s no secret that I’m an Apple Watch devotee. At this point, it feels a little bit like Christmas morning when I get word about a new watch model being released. But part of the magic of the Apple Watch is that every iteration really does feel like you’re getting a new, novel product with bells and whistles you didn’t even realize you wanted – until you have them. After getting a look at the Apple Watch Series 7, that was the case for me once again.
The Series 7 (as well as the latest watchOS 8 software) boasts some subtle upgrades that make it more wearable than previous models, like a larger screen display, gorgeous new colourways (I love my gold-silvery Starlight watch face), and better battery life. But after wearing the Apple Watch Series 7 for several days around the clock, it’s clear to me the upgrade will only make my wellness routine even stronger with some surprising new bigger and better features.
Ahead, a rundown of the fresh features I’m most excited about, and how they’ve helped me day to day. (The Series 7 officially launched October 15 and you can order it here.)
It has multiple new health and fitness features.
The Series 7 includes a new Mindfulness app that prompts you to take a minute to reflect throughout your day. The Reflect feature in the app instructs you to pause and use the time to notice your thoughts as they go through your mind. As a busy person constantly hustling from a workout to a meeting to an event, even those reminders for 60-second pauses make a difference for my mental well-being.
When it comes to working out, the Series 7 also includes Tai Chi and Pilates as workout types in the Workout app. But the workout update (on watchOS 8, so you don’t need the Series 7 to use it!) that really blew my mind is the new fall detection feature that can now detect falls during workouts, like if you tumble off your bike while outdoor cycling. Safety first!
Lastly, I started noticing a little cheerleader voice coming from my wrist when I would, say, close my Move ring or hit a mile marker on a walk or jog. The Series 7 includes new voice feedback via the built-in speaker (or through your AirPods or other Bluetooth headphones) that automatically announces workout milestones and Activity ring progress. For me, this means less glancing down at my Watch to check my stats, distance, time – and more head in the game during all my workouts.
It charges faster than before.
The Series 7 has a battery life of 18 hours, and it juices up 33 percent faster compared to the Series 6. This is super-helpful for me right before bed, when I need a little extra power on my Watch in order to keep it charged through the night to track my sleep.
It includes a keyboard to make responding to texts and emails a breeze.
As much as it pains me to let the outside world interrupt my workouts, there are plenty of times where I need to respond to a time-sensitive text or email. Up until now I’ve used voice dictation when absolutely necessary, which isn’t always the most accurate on loud city streets.
The Series 7 has two larger font sizes to make messages more readable, as well as a special keyboard that lets you slide your finger over the keys to “messy type,” as I like to call it – and it autocorrects spelling errors and anticipates your next words to make your communication quicker (and less disruptive!).
*This article was originally published on Women’s Health US