Apple Watch Series 2 Hands-On
Macworld|Macworld October 2016

Ceramic is stunning, but Hermès overpriced.

Susie Ochs

It’s really hard to tell the difference between the new Apple Watch Series 2 (apple.com/apple-watch-series-2) models and the originals—the aluminum and steel versions anyway—until you place them side by side. Turns out, the Series 2 models (top) are ever so slightly thicker than their predecessors (bottom). Just a hair, not enough to even complain about, really, and it’s certainly not a deal-breaker. But from Apple, a company with a track record of sacrificing ports and  redesigning keyboards in order to make its products thinner and thinner and thinner, the Apple Watch’s extra bulk is a sign that the company is still adding hardware features to find the best mix. In this case, GPS. 

What remains to be seen—and isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer anyhow—is whether GPS will be worth the extra cost for the Series 2. After all, GPS and 50m waterproofing are the only differences between the Series 2 watches and the Series 1, which is still on sale. Aluminum Series 1 models, formerly called Apple Watch Sport, are $269 for 38mm and $299 for 42mm, and those Series 1 watches even have the same S2 chips that Apple put in the aluminum Series 2 models, which are $100 more. (Series 2 watches also come in stainless steel starting at $549, but Apple isn’t selling steel Series 1.) Since my hands-on time after Apple’s September 7 event didn’t include a chance to swim laps or go for a run, the Series 2’s exclusive features didn’t have the opportunity to impress me—yet.

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