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Apple Watch Ultra releases today: Here's what you need to know about Apple's new 'rugged' watch

Everything you need to know about the Apple Watch Ultra

The Apple Watch already has earned a reputation for being a lifesaving device. Today, however, the company released its all-new model: the Apple Watch Ultra. This rugged device is possibly the most important thing to happen to watches since quartz. Here’s what you need to know about this revolutionary new smartwatch.

In this article: Apple Watch Ultra, Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch SE

Who is the new Apple Watch Ultra for?

While the new Apple Watch Ultra can be used by anyone, it was designed from the ground up with adventurers, explorers and extreme athletes in mind. The features this watch offers cater to the individual using it in extreme conditions, such as trekking across a mountain or diving deep into the sea.

What’s new on Apple Watch Ultra?

There are an overwhelming amount of new features and upgrades on this watch. To give you a glimpse at the biggest changes, here are some highlights:

Rugged design

The Apple Watch Ultra case is made of aerospace-grade titanium that surrounds the flat sapphire front crystal to protect the edges from impacts. It’s designed to endure extreme environments and hold up when performing the most vigorous physical activities.

Biggest, brightest display yet

The Ultra has the biggest and brightest Apple Watch face ever. The always-on display is bright enough to be clearly seen in the midday sun. Night mode is optimized for low-light conditions and glows in a vivid red, while the time dial can be switched to a live compass to make sure you know precisely where you’re going. 

Action button

The customizable action button in international orange can be set to perform a variety of functions. Its purpose is to give the user quick physical control when it may be needed the most.

Emergency features

Besides the built-in compass, the Apple Watch Ultra has a Backtrack feature that ensures no matter how far off the beaten path you wander, you’ll always have precise directions on how to get back to home base. If you ever need to get someone's attention, the built-in emergency siren can be heard up to 600 feet away. Like other Apple Watches, the Ultra can automatically contact emergency services if it detects a fall or crash.

Additional speaker and mics

If you ever need to make a call from your watch, the three-microphone array and adaptive algorithm picks the best mic and filters out background noise for optimal voice clarity. The dual-speaker system dramatically improves the watch's audio.

Enhanced GPS performance

The advanced, dual-frequency GPS has a custom positioning algorithm that gives athletes accurate distance information no matter what type of environment they’re in.

Activity-unique bands

Depending on where you’ll wear your new Apple Watch, it comes with one of three rugged bands. The Trail Loop is for the endurance athlete who needs something light yet durable. The Alpine Loop is for the rugged adventurer who needs a corrosion-resistant band that won’t break in even the most extreme conditions. The Ocean band is for water sports.

Built-in depth gauge and more

When the Ultra goes underwater, with the help of Huish Outdoors, the watch automatically turns into a certified dive computer that’s suitable for scuba diving and freediving down to 40 meters.

Only-cellular models

Since the Apple Watch Ultra needs to work no matter where you happen to be, all models are cellular. This means the watch does not need to be connected to your phone to function.

Extended battery life

With all the extra features the Ultra has, it would seem the battery life would decrease. Not at all. In fact, this watch boasts up to 36 hours of operation on a single charge. In the near future, with the coming low-power mode, you can get up to 60 hours per charge.

How much does the Apple Watch Ultra cost?

All models of the Apple Watch Ultra cost $799 and are available on Amazon.

Other all-new Apple Watches

If you like Apple Watches but don’t need the rugged design of the Ultra model, the Apple Watch Series 8 (GPS and cellular), the Apple Watch Series 8 (GPS), the Apple Watch SE (GPS and cellular) and the Apple Watch SE (GPS) were also just released this month.

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Allen Foster writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money. 

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