Apple Watch SE Gen 2 – What & When

Nike Run Club NRC Apple Watch SEApple Watch SE Gen 2

The Apple Watch SE Gen 2 is likely to arrive in 2022, most probably coinciding with the launch of the Apple Watch 8 in September 2022.

Finally, we will see blood pressure and hydration monitoring introduced!!!!!!!…errr. Maybe not. This is the SE model and it’s going to be a REALLY boring product. Like this…

Position in The Apple Watch Range

Gen 2 could be a simple replacement for the existing Watch SE.

More likely, I suspect it will be a modest update of the Watch SE and that the SE will stay current and fall quite a bit in price as the existing SE drops down the range to take the place of the Watch 3.

For that to happen, Apple has to neatly differentiate the Watch SE from the SE Gen 2 and from the Watch 8. that differentiation MUST primarily happen by hardware components as the software on the entire range will be effectively the same.

Must Read: Awesomely detailed Apple Watch 7 Review

Key differentiators

The key differentiator will be the form factor.

  • SE Gen2 will come in 41mm and 45mm case sizes
  • The design will be exactly the same as the existing Watch 7 – and the Watch 8 will also be the same FWIW.
  • This means that the SE Gen 2 will get the more durable lens construction and probably also improved dust resistance.

The key to all that happening is cost. Apple is going to want to avoid 3 completely different form factors and, where sensible, re-use components. So it will re-use the new case colours and new lens/screen sizes.

  • SE Gen 2 will get the same optical HR unit that’s currently in the Watch 7. This will probably bring Blood Oxygen and ECG along with it plus, of course, the greater accuracy of this optical sensor over earlier ones.
  • new GNSS – Watch 7 has got new GNSS & WiFi chips although no one seems to want to report it. This explains the downward blip in performance with the Watch 7’s accuracy compared to Watch 6’s accuracy as the algorithms get bedded in.
  • Faster Charging – I’m not sure about faster charging. On the one hand, Apple will want to guide people toward buying a better-performing Watch 7/8 but battery performance is one of THE most important factors that determine customer satisfaction with smartwatches. If I had to guess I would say that Watch SE Gen 2 will NOT get the fast charging that’s found on the Watch 7. Either way, battery life will still officially be 18 hours.
  • Retina Display – will remain and Gen 2 will NOT get the always-on display. I found the lack of an always-on display very annoying and I’m glad I’m not on Watch 7. But this performance difference is a key differentiator and one that keen Apple Watch users will always be keener to have and thus they will always opt for the more expensive watch (Watch 7/8)  that has it. Under the hood, the screen may otherwise be identical to the Watch 7/8 just that always-on feature is disabled by software.
  • The processor will likely be upgraded to the S6 Sip or S7…they’re basically the same in any case. Perhaps it will be the S7 simply because its size will be designed for the new, larger 41/45mm case sizes.
  • Pricing – from $279. With the existing SE model falling considerably in price to around $200.

That’s about it folks!

You may question why the Watch SE Gen 2’s feature set almost matches that of the Watch 7. But don’t forget that Watch 7 will be discontinued (but supported) as Watch 8 is introduced. For once, the next top-end Apple Watch 8 might be exciting with new sensor capabilities. But this is Apple, the press just say it’s exciting.





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