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Best Apple Watch deals for May 2024

Updated May 22nd, 2024 12:51PM EDT
Image: BGR

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Are you looking for a deal on an Apple Watch? I have been keeping track of Apple Watch prices and discounts since Apple launched its very first smartwatch back in 2015, and there are some great deals available right now. There are also some unimpressive Apple Watch sales you should avoid, and I’ll help you determine which deals are worthwhile.

You can currently save up to $70 on the Apple Watch Series 9, Apple Watch Ultra 2, and even the entry-level Apple Watch SE. But there are a couple of deals that aren’t too enticing, and I’m going to point them out so that you can avoid them. There are currently solid deals available on the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2. Plus, the Apple Watch SE is down to the lowest price of 2024.

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The Apple Watch Series 9 is on sale starting at $307.11, which is a $92 discount. That’s within $8 of the best price ever, so it’s definitely not a bad time to buy a new Series 9 model.

Or, if you want Apple’s biggest and best smartwatch yet, you can get the latest Apple Watch Ultra 2 starting at $779.99. That’s only a $19 discount, so I strongly urge our readers not to buy an Ultra 2 right now. I know waiting can be tough when you really want a new Apple Watch, but I recommend not purchasing the Ultra 2 unless it’s at least $50 off. And if you’re really patient, you might be able to save even more money.

The Ultra 2 is way too big for my wrist, so I don’t have one myself. But I wish it wasn’t because I’m so jealous of the battery life. People can easily get two days or even more in between charges with the Apple Watch Ultra 2. My Apple Watch Series 8 can’t even make it through one full day on a charge anymore, even when I barely use it.

There are also some other Apple Watch deals you need to know about. I’ll cover all the best Apple Watch deals in this extensive guide. Let’s break down each model and dive into the best deals on every smartwatch that Apple makes.

Apple Watch Series 9 & Apple Watch Ultra 2: Newest models on sale

Apple Watch Ultra 2 with the Modular Ultra watch faceImage source: Joe Wituschek for BGR

Apple held a huge iPhone 15 event on September 12, 2023, during which it finally took the wraps off its latest and greatest iPhones. But if you ask me, the new Apple Watch models Apple unveiled at the show were way more exciting than Apple’s new iPhones.

Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 are impressive upgrades — and they’re currently on sale with discounts AND with functional blood oxygen sensors. This is pretty big news since both of these models were recently banned by the ITC. Sales briefly resumed, and the ITC paused its Apple Watch sales ban in the US, but Apple has since been forced to disable the blood oxygen sensors in order to keep selling the Series 9 and Ultra 2.

Apple stores are already selling the updated Apple Watch models without pulse oximetry. But third-party retailers still have the original models in stock, and you can even save up to $70 right now on a Series 9 or Ultra 2 with a working blood oxygen sensor.

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The Series 9 has an all-new S9 SiP that gives it a big power boost. Plus, the display is way brighter, but it’s not only about brightness this time around. In addition to Apple’s boost in brightness, the new Series 9 display can also get much darker than older models. With the always-on display option enabled, the screen can drop to just 1 nit of brightness. That’ll have a big impact on battery life.

There are also so many new features to enjoy in watchOS 10. Tons of new sensors mean you’ll get even more accurate health data. And let’s not forget the new double-tap pinch gesture. Apple seemingly has no plans to enable this feature on older Apple Watch models.

If I needed a new Apple Watch model myself, this is definitely the one that I would get. The Apple Watch Series 9 is a solid upgrade even without the blood oxygen sensor. I have a working pulse ox sensor on my Apple Watch Series 8 right now, and I can’t even remember the last time I used it. Most people are probably in the same boat as me, too.

Thanks to its biggest-ever discount, Apple Watch Series 9 GPS prices start at $307.11 for the version with a 41mm display, and the 45mm model starts at $329. Again, these are both excellent deals for the Series 9. Also, the price of the 45mm model has never been this close to the smaller 41mm version, so it’s an especially good deal if you want the larger Apple Watch.

You can also pick up the Apple Watch Series 9 GPS + Cellular model starting at $399 for the 41mm model and $429 for the 45mm model. Those are both $100 discounts, and they’re also all-time low prices.

As great as Apple’s new Series 9 models are, the Apple Watch Ultra 2 is an even more impressive update.

The new Apple Watch Ultra 2 has an insanely bright new OLED display that can reach an eye-popping 3,000 nits of brightness. But it’s also great for battery life because it can drop all the way down to just 1 nit in low-light conditions.

On top of that, this model also has the new S9 SiP and all the same new health sensors as the Series 9 model. That means faster performance, better efficiency, and that awesome new double-tap feature that lets you control the watch just by pinching your thumb and pointer together twice.

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The Apple Watch Ultra 2 costs $799, just like its predecessor, and it comes with a bunch of new band options. Unfortunately, the best price you’ll get right now is $779.99. That’s only a $19 discount, and it’s not a good deal at all.

You should pay $759 for the Ultra 2 at most, so I recommend waiting for a better sale if this is the Apple Watch model you have your eye on.

Apple Watch SE price drop

Apple Watch SEImage source: Christian de Looper for BGR

There haven’t been many noteworthy Apple Watch SE deals this year, which is a bummer. I think the Apple Watch SE often gets overlooked, but it shouldn’t. This model is Apple’s most affordable smartwatch, and it makes Apple Watches accessible to people who otherwise couldn’t afford one.

The bad news is that most of the impressive deals we saw earlier this month have either ended or sold out. It’s a shame, but there’s always a chance that the sales will return soon. After all, the current crop of Apple Watch Series 8 deals began at the same time, and they’re still available now.

Read our Apple Watch SE review for more info about this model, and keep your eye on the listings below to see which colorways are on sale right now.

Prices start at $189 at the moment, which is an excellent deal. You should look to spend a maximum of $199 for the Apple Watch SE 40mm model, and $239 for the larger 44mm version. Anything under that, and you’re paying a fantastic price for this entry-level Apple Watch.

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Sometimes, people scoff at the Apple Watch SE because it doesn’t garner quite as much fanfare as Apple’s flagship smartwatches. But of all the models Apple sells, the Apple Watch SE is by far the best value.

Yes, the SE lacks some of the more complex features that you’ll find on the Apple Watch Ultra 2 and Apple Watch Series 9. But all of the core features are there, and it runs all the same apps. If you want to spend less time fishing around on your iPhone but don’t want to pay $399+, the Apple Watch SE is definitely a great buy.

Apple Watch Ultra 1st-Gen is on sale

Apple Watch Ultra on a cactus, displaying the exclusive Ultra watch face
Apple Watch Ultra is currently available with discounts of up to $50 off. Image source: Jonathan S. Geller for BGR

The Apple Watch Ultra was first released on September 23, 2022, and it rarely saw discounts last year. But now that the Apple Watch Ultra 2 is out, you can actually get Apple’s 1st-generation model without paying full price.

If you want to save as much as possible on Apple’s biggest and best smartwatch ever, renewed Apple Watch Ultra models are on sale starting at $494.99. Considering how expensive the Apple Watch Ultra is compared to other models, this is a fantastic opportunity to save a lot of cash.

Of note, you don’t often find renewed Apple Watch Ultra models in good condition that are under the $500 mark.

Importantly, renewed Ultra models are guaranteed to look and function like new, or you have 90 days to get a refund. That’s a great policy, of course, because it means you have nothing to lose.

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I told a good friend of mine about Amazon’s renewed Apple Watch Ultra deals the last time they were available. He ended up buying one, and he texted me as soon as it arrived to thank me. He said that the one he got looked brand-new like it was the first time it was ever removed from the box. The only difference was that he paid about $150 less than he would’ve if he bought a new Apple Watch Ultra instead of a renewed one.

And right now, renewed Apple Watch Ultra models are on sale for even less than what my friend paid!

The only caveat here is the same caveat we always warn our readers about when it comes to deals on renewed products. Inventory is obviously going to be very limited, and the best deals usually sell out fast once we’ve let the cat out of the bag.

Apple Watch Series 8 deals

Apple Watch Series 8 dealsImage source: Jonathan Geller, BGR

Following a few sellouts during Black Friday, the Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch SE 2 are both now back in stock and available to ship immediately.

The new Apple Watch Series 8 is definitely the more popular of the two models. It comes with new features such as crash detection and body temperature monitoring, as well as the sleek redesign Apple introduced on the previous-generation Series 7 lineup.

You can read our Apple Watch Series 8 review for more info on this awesome new model.

Apple Watch Series 8 was the best-selling smartwatch among our readers all year last year. It’s packed with great features like an always-on display, blood oxygen sensor, heart rate sensor, ECG, sleep tracking, crash detection, fall detection, and so much more. Plus, it obviously runs all the awesome watchOS apps you might want.

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These deals slash up to $100 off the Apple Watch Series 8 in so many different color and band combinations. Prices start at just $299, but it’s unfortunately not that easy since there is obviously one big caveat: Apple’s Series 8 models are no longer being produced. That means once these models sell out, you likely won’t be able to find them in stock again.

Of note, these deals are no longer available at Best Buy, where this sale started a few days before it did on Amazon. That likely means there’s a good chance the sale will also end soon at Amazon.

Our favorite Apple Watch bands

Apple Watch Series 7 Design
An Apple Watch is shown with one of Apple’s Sport Loop bands. Image source: Christian de Looper for BGR

One of the best parts of owning an Apple Watch is the fact that you can customize any model with a wide range of Apple Watch bands. That includes tons of different first-party bands that Apple sells, of course. I not only swap bands daily, but I went so far as the buy a storage case for all of them. Once you swap, you can’t stop!

However, in addition to Apple’s own bands, there are countless third-party Apple Watch bands that you can get to separate yourself from the pack. Prices range from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars, and there’s a practically endless variety of options to suit every style, color, and taste.

Here are some of our favorite Apple Watch bands that you can get right now to customize your Apple Watch Series 8, Apple Watch SE, Apple Watch Ultra, or any other Apple Watch model you might own.

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I own several of these popular Apple Watch bands myself, so I can vouch for how good they are. Apple sells plenty of great Apple Watch bands as well, but we think they’re way overpriced. Some fabric straps that Apple sells cost as much as $99.

That’s crazy, especially when you can get practically the same bands for a fraction of the price when you buy similar bands that aren’t made by Apple. Or, if you’re looking for other designs, the Apple Watch band deals we listed above are all great options.

FAQ

Do you need a data plan for Apple Watch 9?

Apple Watch with cellular offers LTE connectivity so you don’t need your phone to make or receive calls or send messages. Apple also sells Apple Watch without cellular for a less expensive price.

If you want to make use of the Apple Watch’s cellular connectivity, however, you will need to pay your wireless carrier a monthly fee for a separate data plan. The Apple Watch is not able to piggyback on your smartphone’s data plan.

How much does the Apple Watch Series 9 cost?

Apple Watch Series 9 normally starts at $399 for the smaller 41mm version. The 45mm model retails starting at $429. If you’re looking for Apple Watch with cellular, those models start at $499 and $529, respectively, for the 41mm and 45mm models.

Needless to say, all of these different models are on sale right now with deep discounts.

Is the Apple Watch Series 9 waterproof?

Yes, for all intents and purposes. Apple Watch Series 9 is water-resistant with a WR50 rating. That offers up protection up to 50 meters in water. That means you can go swimming with the Apple Watch in a pool.

Apple Watch is also rated IPX6, which means it is dust-tight against dust particles.

Can you buy Apple Watch 9 in stores?

If you’re in the US, Apple Watch is available at all Apple retail stores, and also retailers such as Best Buy, Amazon, and more. You can also find LTE and cellular models at carrier stores like AT&T and Verizon

Which Apple Watch does ECG and heart rate?

Since Apple Watch Series 4, the Apple Watch has offered the ECG feature. All Apple Watch models also offer heart rate monitoring and notifications. To use the ECG electrocardiogram functionality, which is also sometimes referred to as EKG, your iPhone should be running the latest version of iOS.

Maren Estrada Deals Editor

Maren Estrada has been the Editor of BGR Deals since it launched in 2013. She has more than 20 years of experience testing more than 1,500 products, and reviewing a wide range of consumer electronics including mobile devices, smart home products, computers, and home appliances.

Previously, she was a leading consultant specializing in copywriting, product development, and new product launches.