Apple has continuously increased the Apple Watch display size over the years, with the current Series 8 featuring 41mm and 45mm screen options. The Apple Watch Ultra has an even larger 49mm OLED panel. But if a new report is accurate, Apple isn’t going to stop anytime soon. Next year’s so-called Apple Watch Series X and Apple Watch SE 3 might offer even bigger screens. Earlier reports claimed that the Apple Watch Ultra 2 would also deliver a screen size increase.
The Apple Watch Ultra 2 rumors are particularly interesting as they claim Apple will introduce its microLED display tech on the new wearable. The screen should be more efficient and brighter than OLED screens, delivering better viewing angles in the process. But microLED screens are also more expensive to manufacture, which would increase the Ultra 2’s price.
The same rumors claim Apple will move to a 2.1-inch display size for the Apple Watch Ultra 2, slightly larger than the 1.9-inch (49mm) on the current model.
Omdia analyst David Hsieh echoed some of these remarks in a research note last week. He also pointed out the Ultra 2’s screen size increase and the expected price increases following the adoption of microLED screen tech.
But the analyst also detailed screen size increases for the regular Apple Watch models Apple will sell next year. He expects the Apple Watch Series 8 and 9 to evolve into Apple Watch Series X.
That’s not a confirmed name, but it would be just like Apple’s iPhone X phone that celebrated the handset’s 10th anniversary.
Accordingly, Hsieh says the Apple Watch Series X will feature displays measuring 1.89 inches and 2.04 inches. That’s a significant increase from the current 1.71-inch (41mm) and 1.92-inch (45mm) options on the Series 8. If accurate, the smallest Series X watch would be almost as big as a 45mm Series 8 model.
The analyst says the 2024 Apple Watches will have the same display supplier, LG Display.
Puzzlingly, Hsieh says Apple might announce the products in late 2023 but release them in 2024. That seems extremely unlikely. Apple traditionally unveils new Apple Watch models alongside the latest iPhones. The new watches then go on sale almost immediately.
The Apple Watch SE 3 is also mentioned in the report. The analyst says the handset will grow in size when it comes to the display to match the current 1.71-inch (41mm) and 1.92 (45mm) options available on Series 8 and 9. What’s strange is the mention of a Series 9 device, which doesn’t exist. The Series 9 models should debut this fall alongside Apple’s iPhone 15 lineup.
The analyst again delivers a confusing launch timeframe. The Apple Watch SE 3 might launch in late 2023 but start selling in 2024. But Apple doesn’t refresh the SE series yearly, and the Apple Watch SE 2 was just released this past September.
Hsieh says Apple might unveil the significantly upgraded Apple Watch Ultra 2 in late 2023, only to release it a year later. That also seems highly unlikely.
It’s true that other reports don’t expect the wearable to drop until 2024, if not later. After all, the Ultra is a Watch model that might not need annual refreshes. But there is no way Apple would unveil the next-generation model this year and then release it a year later.