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The lowdown on the Apple Watch Series 9, Watch Ultra 2 and upgraded AirPods Pro

Here’s all you need to know about the newest members to the Apple watch and earphones family — including brilliant carbon neutral bands.

You’ve seen all the news about the all-new iPhone 15, iPhone 15 Plus, iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max. During the launch on 12 September 2023, Apple also unveiled the latest additions to its iconic smartwatches and earphones. The much anticipated event in Cupertino, California saw the company introduce the Apple Watch Series 9, Apple Watch Ultra 2 and impressive upgrades to the second generation AirPods Pro. Here’s the full lowdown on everything you need to know about the all-new revelations.

AirPods Pro 2023

The AirPods Pro is easily one of the most popular tech gadgets around. Everywhere you go, you will see someone spotting the earphones — and it’s clear why. They are durable, efficient and sleek too. Now, Apple has decided to present a newer version of the second-generation AirPods Pro. Created to help charge the iPhone 15 lineup as well as AirPods, iPad and Mac, a USB-C connector now comes fitted into the AirPods Pro. Expect enhanced convenience without having to alternate between cables.

If you’re always on and about (especially on adventures), you’d be happy to know that dust resistance is heightened even further for the case whereas the earbuds now come with an enforced IP54 grading. When combined with Apple Vision Pro (to be released some time next year), there’s something truly special dubbed Lossless Audio. The new AirPods Pro is equipped with a H2 chip and with Lossless Audio, be prepared to enjoy a tremendous decrease in audio latency. That’s pretty cool!

Features on the AirPods Pro that will come alongside iOS 17 are Adaptive Audio, Conversation Awareness and Personalised Volume. The latter even lets the AirPod Pro know your preference of listening — including the selection of volume. The 2023 AirPods Pro is priced at RM1,099.

Apple Watch Ultra 2

Here’s something for the fans of Apple’s popular Watch Ultra! Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams on the product: “Apple Watch Ultra 2 is our most advanced Apple Watch, with great performance and feature updates. It’s perfect for anyone who wants our biggest, brightest display, longest battery life, and best GPS of any Apple Watch, all in a stunning design”. Now, let’s get to know to the latest member of the Watch Ultra family.

For starters, the smartwatch is fitted with Apple’s S9 SiP. Features come in abundance while systemwide upgrades can be expected. Health data can be checked even more securely with the help of Siri. The Watch Ultra 2 also has a double tap gesture feature for convenience and ease of use. Compared to the first product, the newly unveiled gadget is even quicker with machine learning — all because of the four-core Neural Engine. The aforementioned Double Tap comprises opening the Smart Stack, Taptic Engine, Digital Crown and more. In fact, you can also use it as a remote to take photos on the camera.

Furthermore, with 3000 nits, experience the maximum brightness that is possible. This is said to be Apple’s brightest display; a 50% increment from the model’s predecessor. Need to use the Flashlight? Just use the Digital Crown to toggle between brightness. Appearance-wise, the watch is presented in Modular Ultra, an all-new creation by the Apple team. The outermost edge of the smartwatch is now designed to illustrate everything from depth to seconds. Imbued with the adventurous spirit in you? The Apple Watch Ultra 2 is made to go as low as 500 metres below sea level and as high as 9,000 metres.

If you didn’t already know, the Apple Watch Ultra 2 will arrive with watchOS 10. What does that mean? Well, look forward to redesigned apps, watch faces such as Nike Gl0be and Snoopy, ambient light sensor for Night Mode and more. The 49mm Apple Watch Ultra 2 is available in carbon neutral Alpine Loop and Trail Loop bands. Colours include blue, orange, blue/black, green/grey, orange/beige, olive, indigo and blue. The item is priced at RM3,799 each.

Apple Watch Series 9

Apple’s best-selling watch series are now improved and better than ever. Meet the Apple Watch Series 9 — imbued with the S9 SiP as well as watchOS 10. With the former, expect nothing but the best. For example, a full charge now allows usage of the smartwatch for up to 18 hours. With a more long-lasting battery life, you can go on and about your day without having to worry about your next charge.

Like the Apple Watch Ultra 2, the Watch Series 9 also comes fitted with the four-core Neural Engine. What this means is that the machine learning algorithm is enhanced — paving the way for efficient data processing. That applies to the optical heart sensor, gyroscope, accelerometer and more. At 2,000 nits, the Watch Series 9’s level of brightness is two times its predecessor. Another really interesting component to the Apple Watch Series 9 is the second-generation Ultra Wideband (UWB) chip. The chip actually plays an integral role in ensuring Precision Finding works efficiently. So, if your iPhone 15 is missing, don’t be too alarmed. From distance to direction, Apple aims to ease the woes with Precision Finding.

As mentioned, the Apple Watch Series 9 will be fitted with watchOS 10. This means extra additions to Maps and Compass Waypoints, newer metrics like speed sensors especially with Bluetooth connectivity, fresh looks for apps and more. The Apple Watch Series 9 assortment consists of two sizes — 41mm and 45mm. Colours you get to choose are pink aluminium, silver, midnight and starlight. Of course, there’s also (PRODUCT)RED! As for Apple Watch SE, sizes for the aluminium cases include 40mm and 44mm.

For a carbon neutral option, go for the Sport Loop band. Made with 82% recycled yarn, the move alludes to Apple’s commitment to be more sustainable. This includes the conception of FineWoven — a suede-like band concocted using 68% post-consumer recycled materials. This initiative follows the company’s aim to stop utilising leather in its products.

Even the Hermès bands are now friendlier to the environment. They include the checked canvas option called Toile H and contrasting model named Twill Jump. In addition to Hermès Radial (an all-new dial), there’s also the waterproof Kilim band and hand-braided Bridon band. The Apple Watch Series 9 is priced from RM1,899 whereas the Apple Watch SE is priced from RM1,199.

Which of these cool new Apple gadgets are you most excited for? Learn more about Apple and its newest products HERE.

(All photos by Apple)

The lowdown on the Apple Watch Series 9, Watch Ultra 2 and upgraded AirPods Pro

After graduating with a Masters in Fashion Journalism from Instituto Marangoni London, Ronn took on a role as Lifestyle Writer. Now on a more project-centric position with Lifestyle Asia, he actively writes about drinks, fashion, and everything cool. When he's not typing on the laptop or managing a shoot, you will find him visiting the newest restaurants or sipping on a Negroni.

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