Apple Watch 3 – Discontinued in September 2022?

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Apple Watch 3 Will Likely Be Discontinued in 2022

Here’s why…

Apple is clearly favouring a strategy based around 3 core products: Watch Series 3, SE and now Apple Watch Series 7. These 3 products set the starting prices for each tier and Apple clearly are using the Watch 3 as their introductory-level product and perhaps even as a kids’ version in the 38mm size.

Whatever happens with new Apple Watches in the next year or so, it is almost certain that at least 3 starting price points will be maintained and currently, the Series 3 comes in at just under £/$/Eu200, sometimes falling to $169 in the sales. This is clearly a price point that works for Series 3 and the SE is only recently experiencing price cuts to bring it closer to the Series 3 pricing, perhaps indicating what is to come?

Indeed the Watch 3 is probably the best selling Apple Watch of all, primarily because of its longevity in the marketplace having been first released in September 2017. This makes it certain that Apple sees the entry price point as highly important, maybe they will try to raise the lowest price a tad with an SE coming in at just over £/$Eu200?

Options that Apple Might Consider For its entry-level product

Whichever option Apple goes for, the differentiation between the 3 remaining products must be clear. In descending order of likelihood, these are my 3 best bets on new Apple Watch products next year.

  1. Discontinue the Series 3. Lower the price of SE and introduce SE Gen 2 which might have a larger always-on screen or faster charging or the new HR sensor. Introduce yet another incrementally improved watch 8; or
  2. Maintain the Series 3. Replace the SE with SE Gen 2. This could plausibly happen in April 2022 (likely September); or
  3. Discontinue the Series 3. Lower the price of SE, lower the price of Watch 7 and introduce a significantly different Watch 8 (outdoor version? glucose-sensing? More angular design?)

Whilst the Series 3 is a decent product, it just has to go in my opinion. The usable screen areas are starting to look too tiny, the battery is as inadequate as it always was and, well, it’s just old! It’s a testament to Apple that Series 3 still supports the latest, greatest watchOS 8.

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Chronology of Apple Watch Series

 

WatchReleased withRelease dateFinal supported OSSupport ended
Apple Watch (1st generation)watchOS 1.0 (iOS 8.2)April 24, 2015watchOS 4.3.2 (iOS 11.4.1)September 17, 2018
Series 1watchOS 3.0 (iOS 10.0)September 12, 2016watchOS 6.3 (iOS 13.7)September 15, 2020
Series 2September 16, 2016
Series 3watchOS 4.0 (iOS 11.0)September 22, 2017Latest watchOS(Current)
Series 4watchOS 5.0 (iOS 12.0)September 21, 2018
Series 5watchOS 6.0 (iOS 13.0)September 20, 2019
SEwatchOS 7.0 (iOS 14.0)September 18, 2020
Series 6
Series 7
watchOS 8.0 (iOS 15.0)September 14, 2021

Take Out

I think the Series 3 will finally bow out in 10 months time and I’m pretty certain there will be an improved SE model. As always the next top-end Apple Watch will draw the most speculation from people like me who hope for considerably more than will be delivered in reality.

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2 thoughts on “Apple Watch 3 – Discontinued in September 2022?

  1. Indeed, interesting options on the table.

    The other interesting concept to wrap ones head around, is whether or not WatchOS9 gets ported to the Apple Watch S3. We all know that the S3 barely manages to run/fit WatchOS8 – but would Apple really dare to say “Yo, you just bought this watch at some point in the last year, but now it’s no longer receiving updates?”.

    In my mind that means either a substantial code-cleaning effort on WatchOS9 so that the S3 can run it, or…well…Apple just says ‘tough nuggets’ to those folks.

  2. My guess would be that WatchOS9 would get ported to all current watches including AW3. But if AW3 is discontinued then I doubt it won’t get ported.

    I think the discontinuation is much more likely especially if SE2 gets a larger screen, which i would have thought is very likely.

    Relegating SE1 to the entry level model gives Apple a chance to bump up the price of the entry-level model (vs AW3) and increase margins of the entry level model.

    Arguing against myself, I’d imagine that AW3 is well and truly optimised from a cost and production perspective so that could well be more profitable than SE1 becoming the base model.

    Bottom line: SE3 **WILL** be discontinued at some point. It’s just ‘when?’ that’s the question.

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