Apple today announced the release of the next-generation Apple Watch, the Apple Watch Series 2. Key features of the new model include swimproof water resistance of up to 50 meters, along with a faster dual-core CPU, a GPU with twice the performance of the prior model, and a new second-generation display that is twice as bright. The Series 2 model will also feature a built-in GPS so that workouts can be tracked without needing an iPhone in tow, with a fast start so users don’t need to wait for a GPS fix, and route map and GPS-accurate pace and distance. Developers will also be able to access the built-in GPS via watchOS 3 APIs. The Apple Watch Series 2 adds a new white ceramic model with a casing that is four times harder than stainless steel, while other body and wrist band options remain much the same as the first Apple Watch, now known as Apple Watch Series 1.
In addition, Apple also introduced a new Apple Watch Nike+ model, designed for runners with a unique band and available in four unique Nike styles. It also appears to have a custom Nike app that will more proactively promote and track workouts and allow users to compete with other Apple Watch Nike+ users. It was unclear from the presentation whether this app will be exclusive to the Apple Watch Nike+ or also be available for the Apple Watch Series 2, although it’s worth noting that Apple has created model-exclusive Watch Faces before, such as for the Apple Watch Hermès.
Pricing for the Apple Watch Series II and Apple Watch Nike Plus starts at $369. Apple is also adding the dual-core processor to the Apple Watch Series 1; it now starts at $269. The Apple Watch Series 2 will be available for pre-order this Friday, Sept. 9, and go on sale Friday Sept. 16. The Apple Watch Nike Plus is expected to be available in late October.