Is there any more iconic smartwatch than the Apple Watch? Still one of the most desirable options on the market today, the Series 5 is the fifth incarnation of this super-popular choice. While it doesn’t offer much that really stands out from its older sibling the Series 4, it does have the huge advantage of an always-on screen which could make this upgrade worth the extra investment.
The Series 5 is the fifth in a line of six Apple Watches, and is the the second most up to date incarnation yet with a release date of September 2019. The Series 4 Apple Watch saw a vast number of improvements over its Series 3 cousin, so perhaps it isn’t too surprising that the fifth version doesn’t have anything too spectacular to offer in the way of upgrades, although its big selling point is the addition of its always-on display which makes it a lot quicker and more convenient to see the time at a glance.
The Apple Watch Series 5 sticks with the identical OLED technology that it has used for the last few years, so you can expect a vivid and bright, easy-to-read display from the latest model. The big change is the always-on display, which we’ve already mentioned, and the“Raise To Wake” functionality has finally been dropped so you can see your notifications or the time instantly by just glancing down at your wrist.
This new feature also means that when you’re working out you don’t need to flick your wrist to see your stats. Therefore, you can simply glance and see how you’re matching up to your goals in seconds. The viewing angles are also very impressive. When the watch display is dim you can still see it from virtually every angle.
With the series 5, Apple introduced a lot of power management features for more efficient power management and lower power consumption, also by utilizing a new ambient light sensor. The combination of better power management hardware and software allowed a battery life of 18 hours.
The Series 5 has retained the 44mm and 40mm designs from the Apple Watch Series 4 as well as the stylish round edges and small speaker grilles. It is also water resistant up to 5ATM so you can track your swims with ease.
There has been one design change however; the materials used for this incarnation are different, with new titanium and ceramic variants that increase the choice of price points available for retail. Both feel very comfortable when worn, with a premium touch that is worth the extra cost.
The Fitness Tracking
As might have been expected after the major upgrades experienced during the previous release of the Series 4, there isn’t a lot more that has been added to the Series 5 by Apple in terms of fitness functionality. You’ll still benefit from the ECG monitor that was so applauded when the Series 4 was released. However, if you’re looking for the sleep tracker that we’ve all been hoping for you’ll be sorely disappointed. It still hasn’t materialized, consequently that means that there hasn’t been any deterioration in the length of the battery life.
Of course, as you’d expect, you can still track a wide range of fitness activities from yoga and running to swimming as well as being capable of tracking your output on a selection of gym equipment such as treadmills and steppers.
Apple has also promised an improved GPS in this latest model, although its prowess is yet to be determined.
What Are The Main Advantages?
- Water resistant to 5ATM
- ECG feature
- Speaker grilles to tell you your laps
- Stylish new titanium and ceramic designs
- Upgraded GPS
- Stylish design with rounded edges and a choice of strap designs and colors
- Always-on display
What Are The Main Disadvantages?
- Very expensive for limited additional features
- No sleep tracker
If you’re not desperate to invest in the most up to date Apple tech, you might want to consider investing in the Series 4 smartwatch instead. Last year’s incarnation of the iconic Apple Watch brand will probably offer you better value for money than the Series 5. After all, there are very few differences between the two models and if you can live without the always-on screen functionality then you might as well buy the older version since all of the specs including battery life remain the same.
How Do We Test Smartwatches?
We’re here to give you all the vital statistics and information you need to avoid making an expensive purchasing mistake when choosing the best smartwatch to suit your needs. That’s why we take our evaluation process so seriously. We look at every key element of each smartwatch that we test so we can bring you the most up to date and relevant details.
Comfort and design are two major aspects that we look at. We check out not only how good the watch looks on your wrist but also how comfortable and easy it is to wear. We also check out the simplicity of the controls and how fun it is to use.
Next, we look at the different functions such as GPS, third party apps and fitness tracking capabilities. We don’t just test these to see how well they work but we also look at how much they slow down the watch’s performance as well as how much effect it has on the battery life overall.
We check out LTE connectivity and the other features before letting you know what we’ve found. With our expert help, we hope that we’ve given you all the vital data you need to choose wisely. For a complete set of features and differences between Apple watch models, see here.
The latest Apple Watch is a pretty iconic choice, and if you’re the sort of person who simply must have the latest Apple tech, you’re going to love the Series 5. However, if you’re looking for a highly functional and impressive Apple Watch that won’t set you back quite so much money, you might want to consider one of the earlier versions instead. The Series 4 offers virtually every benefit that the Series 5 has to offer (except the always-on screen) and it comes in with a lower price tag. It might be better to wait until next year’s Apple Watch before making the investment in the latest release. Finally, if you’re looking for an Apple watch for the younger generations of your family then have a look at our pick of the best Apple watches for kids.
Last Updated on October 7, 2021
A top of the line copywriter with more than a decade of writing experience with many high-end and diverse multinational clients. Lots of experience and interest in writing about and implementing technology. Scott manages the creation of content for us as a freelancer service and even though he is based in the UK, his writers can adapt and cater to our audience which is mostly US based.
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