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Article: Apple Watch Ultra 3: What's Next for Apple's Ultimate Smart Watch?

Apple Watch Ultra 3: What's Next for Apple's Ultimate Smart Watch? - Buckle and Band

Apple Watch Ultra 3: What's Next for Apple's Ultimate Smart Watch?

With September 2024 on the horizon, the tech world is buzzing with anticipation for Apple's latest releases, including the much-anticipated iPhone 16 and Apple Watch Ultra 3. However, this year’s iteration of the Apple Watch Ultra is expected to come with fewer upgrades compared to its predecessor, the Apple Watch Ultra 2. Read on to explore the rumours and speculations surrounding the next Apple Watch Ultra.

Black and white picture of an Apple Watch being worn on someones arm

A Look Back: Apple Watch Ultra 2

When the Apple Watch Ultra 2 launched last year, it brought several impressive features to the table, such as a 50% brighter display, a more powerful S9 chip, a "Double Tap" gesture for touch-free interaction, on-device Siri, and increased internal storage. The expectations for its successor, however, might need to be tempered. Here’s what we know so far.

Display Technology

Initially, there were high hopes that the Apple Watch Ultra 3 would feature a cutting-edge microLED display, promising increased brightness, better contrast, and improved battery efficiency. Unfortunately, these plans seem to have been shelved. Despite years of development, Apple scrapped its microLED project in 2024, with no immediate plans to revisit it.

Apple Watch Ultra with dark red night screen enabled

Instead, Apple is rumoured to be adopting new low-energy OLED panel technology in its upcoming models to enhance power efficiency for always-on displays. This technology, if implemented, would likely appear in both the new Series models and the Ultra model.


For those expecting a radical redesign, the Apple Watch Ultra 3 might not deliver. According to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, the third-generation Apple Watch Ultra will retain a design very similar to the original. While rumours of a completely redesigned "Apple Watch X" with a thinner case and magnetic bands persist, this model is likely separate from the Ultra and could debut in 2024 or 2025.

Apple Watch Ultra with a bright orange strap, laying sideways on a table

New Features

Health tracking remains a focal point for the Apple Watch Ultra series. The Ultra 3 is expected to introduce enhanced health monitoring capabilities, including blood pressure monitoring and sleep apnea detection. These features will align with the expected advancements in the Apple Watch Series 10/X.

The blood pressure monitoring feature will alert users if their blood pressure trends upward and allow them to log activities during hypertension episodes, although it won’t provide specific readings. Sleep apnea detection will analyse sleep history and breathing patterns, suggesting users consult a doctor if signs of sleep apnea are detected.

Hardware Updates

In terms of hardware, significant upgrades appear unlikely. Renowned Apple supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo suggests the Apple Watch Ultra 3 will have "almost no" new hardware changes compared to the Ultra 2. This implies that the new health features will likely rely on existing sensors enhanced by machine learning and software improvements.

Colour Options

Currently, the Apple Watch Ultra 2 is available in its signature natural titanium colour. Prior to the Ultra 2’s launch, there were whispers about a darker colour option, but it never materialised. However, there is still speculation that a dark ceramic back or a Space Black titanium case, reminiscent of the high-end Edition model of the Apple Watch Series 7, might be introduced in future models.

Side view of an Apple Watch Ultra

watchOS 11

One certainty is that the Apple Watch Ultra 3 will run on watchOS 11. Previewed at WWDC in June, watchOS 11 promises a host of new features and improvements, including additional Smart Stack widgets, Check In for Messages, new workout types, a Vitals app for key health metrics, a Translate app, and an innovative Apple Pay feature called Tap to Cash.

Elevate Your Apple Watch with Buckle & Band

While we eagerly await the release of the Apple Watch Ultra 3, it’s an excellent time to consider upgrading your Apple Watch strap. At Buckle & Band, we specialise in high-quality, luxury genuine leather straps that perfectly complement the sophisticated design of the Apple Watch. Our straps not only enhance the aesthetic appeal of your watch but also offer superior comfort and durability. Whether you own the latest Apple Watch model or an earlier version, our premium leather straps are the perfect upgrade to personalise your device and make a stylish statement.

Milanese Stainless Steel Luxury Apple Watch Strap - Buckle & Band - SLS-38-SI-SI

Stay tuned for more updates as we get closer to the launch of the Apple Watch Ultra 3, and in the meantime, explore our range of exquisite Apple Watch straps and other accessories to elevate your Apple experience.

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