Apple announced that the Apple Watch Series 3 was dropping in price to $199 which is a great deal. The major difference between the Series 3 and Series 4 Apple Watch is that the Series 4 has a larger display, a slightly thinner case, double the storage for music (16 GB compared to 8 GB), an electrical heart rate sensor for ECGs (to detect atrial fibrillation), fall detection and low heart rate alerts.
The Series 4 comes in two sizes, 40 mm and 44 mm, while the Series 3 is available in 38 mm and 42 mm.
Personally, I’d go for the Series 4 over the Series 3 because there are some significant upgrades over the 3. The Series 4 is also a newer version which means it’ll be receiving updates from Apple presumably for a longer period of time. I don’t know that for a fact but it makes sense that the Series 3 would be phased out sooner than the 4 for major software updates.
Since the Series 5 was announced, Apple no longer sells the Series 4 directly and is being phased out of production but you may still be able to purchase a brand new Series 4 for a nice discount through other retailers while supplies last.
The new Series 5 Apple Watch doesn’t have many significant upgrades over the Series 4 unless you want always-on display which would be nice or a built-in compass. The always-on display doesn’t reduce battery life which is a big deal because that hasn’t been the case with any other OLED display smartwatch I’ve used.
Apple promises 18 hours of battery life on the 3, 4, and 5 models but I’ve easily gotten a day and half out of the Series 4. I like that Apple doesn’t over-promise on battery life.
The Series 3 38 mm model (on Amazon) at $199, at the time of this writing, is enticing since it’s now more directly competing with similarly priced smartwatches like the Fitbit Versa 2, Samsung Galaxy Active, and several others. So, if you’ve always wanted an Apple Watch then there’s now a more affordable offering from Apple.
Still, I think the Series 4 offers quite a bit more than the Series 3 and if you can find one at a good price, I’d choose it over the 3 for the reasons already stated.
In my case, I’d like to upgrade to a GPS+Cellular version. I’m ready to go phone free and I know the Series 4 does a terrific job with calls. The mic and speaker are very good. The speaker on the Series 4 is 50% louder than the Series 3. Unlike other watches I’ve answered phone calls through most people can’t tell I’ve taken their call through my watch and that says a lot about the mic quality on the Series 4.
So I’m looking at selling my GPS Series 4 and grabbing the GPS+Cellular version so I can answer phone calls and texts when I’m away from my phone. There’s so many occasions where that would be so handy. I just don’t want to pay the $499 price of the cheapest Series 5 cellular model to get that feature. If I can save $100 or more on the Series 4, it’ll be worth going for last year’s edition.
Anyway, the Series 4, as I’m writing this, is available at Walmart and Amazon for a nice discount. You can check out the GPS+Cellular version or the GPS only version on Amazon to check availability and price.