Apple untethers the Watch Series 3 with a cellular connection


— 5:09 PM on September 12, 2017

I remember watching Dick Tracy cartoons as a kid, and being totally in love with the two-way wrist communicator the detective used. Apple has now made that possibility a reality with its new Apple Watch Series 3, which comes with built-in cellular connectivity, a first for the product line.

The watch incorporates a full LTE radio that activates with a built-in embedded SIM. If you're near your iPhone, the Watch will default over to that the same way previous models would. If you step away from your handset, though, the Watch automatically switches its radios on and uses the same number as the phone. Apple says the cellular antenna in the watch is built into the display itself, something that the company is calling an industry first.

The watch is powered by Apple's S3 SoC, which the company says is 70% faster than the previous chip and offers faster app launching and smoother graphics. An Apple W2 chip powers the wireless connectivity in the watch. The company says the W2 offers 85% faster Wi-Fi and 50% more efficient power usage while using Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. If you don't want to talk directly into your wrist like a cool detective, you can also pair a pair of Apple's AirPods or a Bluetooth headset and go for a totally wireless experience. The new Watch also offers the ability for Siri to talk back to you via the built-in speaker.

The Apple Watch Series 3 comes in two models and a host of colors. Available finishes include a silver, dark gray, or gold aluminum body, or silver or black stainless steel options. The fully-featured Watch Series 3 goes for $399. If you don't want cellular connectivity, you can pick up a GPS-only model for $329. If you just want to get in on the style without going for the newest and latest hardware, the original Apple Watch is dropping to $249. The Apple Watch Series 3 will be available to order on September 15 and will begin selling on September 22.

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