The upcoming Apple Watch Series 9 is about more than just a slight upgrade

Aug 4, 2023, 1:30 PM UTC
3 mins read
The upcoming Apple Watch Series 9 is about more than just a slight upgrade
(Image credit: Apple)

According to information provided by the Weibo leaker “Instant Digital,” the upcoming Apple Watch Series 9 is anticipated to exhibit minimal changes from its current model, aside from a discernible performance enhancement.

In a recent post shared today, the Weibo user has lent further credence to earlier reports, affirming that the forthcoming Apple Watch Series 9 will indeed constitute a modest upgrade. The impending update purportedly revolves around the refinement of the cores embedded within the device’s S-series chip, a modification expected to yield a conspicuous escalation in performance. However, beyond this pivotal alteration, the overall composition of the device is projected to remain fundamentally akin to the prevailing Apple Watch Series 8.

It is worth noting that the CPU architecture of the S6, S7, and S8 chips, which power the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch Series 7, Apple Watch Series 8, second-generation Apple Watch SE, and Apple Watch Ultra, is virtually indistinguishable. These chips encompass identical specifications, boasting 32GB of storage capacity and dual-core CPUs denoted by the identifier T8301. Apple, during the introduction of the S6 in the Apple Watch Series 6, had previously extolled its capabilities, asserting that the chip facilitated a 20 percent swifter app launch.

The S6, S7, and S8 chips are predicated on the architecture of Apple‘s A13 Bionic chip, as featured in the iPhone 11 series, and are produced employing TSMC’s 7nm fabrication process. It is worth highlighting that Apple initiated its transition to the more advanced 5nm process with the advent of the A14 Bionic chip in 2020.

According to information provided by Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman, the forthcoming S9 chip will be underpinned by the A15 Bionic chip‘s architecture. This evolution in chip design augurs well for a substantial elevation in performance and energy efficiency, potentially resulting in accelerated app launch speeds and potentially ameliorated battery longevity. The S9 chip is projected to play a pivotal role not only in the Apple Watch Series 9 but also in the second-generation Apple Watch Ultra, slated for release later this year.

This emerging narrative bears a semblance to the overarching theme observed with last year’s Apple Watch Series 8, which had presented as a modest advancement over the Series 7. In that instance, enhancements were primarily centered on the integration of a more potent gyroscope and accelerometer, the introduction of Crash Detection, and the incorporation of a body temperature sensor, differentiating it from its immediate precursor in 2021.

With performance optimization positioned as the primary focal point for the Apple Watch Series 9 and the forthcoming second-generation Apple Watch Ultra, the trajectory for Apple’s new watch offerings in 2023 appears to mirror previous patterns of incremental updates. Notably, it is rumored that Apple intends to introduce a fresh array of color options for its product lineup this year, including introducing a pink variant for the Apple Watch Series 9 and a black vote for the second-generation Apple Watch Ultra.

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