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Don’t expect big changes from this year’s ‘Apple Watch 2’

Published Apr 11th, 2016 6:05PM EDT
Apple Watch 2
Image: LWYang

Since its release last year, the Apple Watch hasn’t exactly taken the world by storm. Sure, the device launched with a lot of hype and fanfare, but the Apple Watch hasn’t exactly become the homerun many believed it would be. Tellingly, Apple has still never disclosed sales figures for the Apple Watch. But to be fair, Tim Cook has said that sales have increased with each passing quarter.

The fact that the Apple Watch didn’t instantly become a revolutionary product, however, isn’t necessarily a troubling warning sign. Indeed, if we take a look back at Apple’s storied history, we see that it took some time for products like the iPod and the iPhone to truly become global phenomenons. That being the case, proponents of the Apple Watch have justifiably argued that we should reserve judgement on the device until the second-generation model is released.

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Fair enough, but now there’s word via reputed analyst Ming-Chi Kuo that we may have to wait until 2017 for a major Apple Watch redesign. In an apt analogy, Kuo said that Apple’s 2016 plans for the Apple Watch will akin to an ‘S’ refresh for the iPhone, which is to say that there will be some decent spec improvements but that the overall design of the device will remain the same.

The next-gen Apple Watch is said to feature “spec improvements with limited changes to form factor design”, Kuo wrote in a research note obtained by AppleInsider. While Kuo didn’t delve into detail regarding the types of spec improvements we can expect to see, it stands to reason that the next-gen Apple Watch will be faster and, if history is any indication, will sport improved battery life.

Interestingly, a research note from analyst Brian White over the weekend relayed the exact opposite, with White claiming that Apple may introduce a new Apple Watch with a 20-40% thinner casing as early as June. All the same, not all research reports are created and equal and Kuo has a rather impressive track record with respect to Apple rumors.

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.