Apple is at work on future enhancements to the Apple Watch, including faster speeds and sensors to monitor body temperature and blood sugar, plus a special edition for extreme sports, Bloomberg reported on Monday (June 14), citing sources.
This year’s model, which will likely be called the Apple Watch Series 7, will feature a faster processor, improved wireless connectivity and an updated, thinner display screen, sources told Bloomberg. The extreme sports model, which is anticipated to roll out in 2022, will be an adventure edition competing with more rugged watches from Garmin and Casio, per Bloomberg.
The body temperature components were considered as part of COVID-19 detection, but didn’t come out as fast as anticipated. That feature will now be included with the 2022 update, competing with the capabilities of smartwatches like Fitbit, which is now owned by Alphabet’s Google.
The blood-sugar sensor is also in the works, but is not expected to be ready for immediate commercial release. The glucose monitoring feature would set the Apple Watch apart from any other offerings on the market. Apple is aiming for a solution that can analyze blood through the skin, without the need for a finger prick or users’ input of the numbers.
At its World Development Conference this month, Apple announced the option to include a digital identification card that can be stored in its wallet. Users can create the ID card by adding their state ID or driver’s license to their Apple Wallet. The ID is encrypted and can be used at airport security checkpoints. Users also have the ability to add digital keys to their house, office, car and hotel. The new features also are available with the watchOS 8 updates.
The Apple Watch also got a new Home app that offers users enhanced control over smart home tools, such as being able to view who is at the front door. There is also an option for some users to add transit cards from select U.S. and mainland China cities.