Apple Watch Series 5 Vs Series 4 Vs Series 3 [Specs Comparison]

The iPhone 11 / 11 Pro Max might be getting all of the attention following its announcement on September 10th, but there was another product given stage time that is arguably more impressive. The Apple Watch Series 5 is already up for pre-order on and goes on sale on September 20th. And there’s plenty to get excited about.

Compared to the outgoing Apple Watch Series 4, the improvements aren’t many, but the important one is huge. If you compare the Series 5 with the Series 3 that remains on sale, the differences start to grow.

Let’s get the biggest difference out of the way first. The Apple Watch Series 5 has an Always-On Retina display, which no other Apple Watch can boast. That’s a big deal and may be enough of a reason to opt for the new hotness this year. If you’ve ever glanced at your Apple Watch and wished it wasn’t completely black, this is the upgrade for you.

Beyond that, the sizes of the Apple Watch Series 5 and Series 4 are identical. The Series 3 has a similarly sized case, but the display is noticeably smaller. The 42mm case of the Series 3 has a display area of 740 sq. mm. The 38 mm shrinks to just 538 sq. mm. The Series 4 and Series 5’s 44mm and 40mm options boast an area of 977 sq. mm and 759 sq. mm, respectively.

The Apple Watch Series 5 and 4 are also slightly thinner than the Series 3; not that we expect most to notice.

Speed is definitely different, though. The Series 5 and 4 have improved processors over the Series 3, and you’re likely to find both newer watches are much snappier than the Series 3.

Finally, the Apple Watch Series 5 is the only one to have a compass built in. We didn’t realize the older models didn’t have one, and if it’s important to you it’s here, ready to go.

The best Apple Watch available to buy now is undoubtedly the Series 5. Whether that’s enough to upgrade from a Series 4 is up to you. If you’re choosing between a Series 5 and a Series 3 and have the extra cash, absolutely pick up the newest on the block.

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