Although the Apple Watch 8 (opens in new tab) likely won't arrive until late next year, a new unofficial render offers a glimpse at what the next-generation smartwatch could look like. As we expect, the render reveals a design pretty similar to the Apple Watch 7 (opens in new tab).
Apple doesn't take design changes lightly. In the past we've seen significant appearance alterations maintained for at least a few annual refreshes of the company's flagships. That's why it's no surprise new Apple Watch 7 sizes and larger displays seem continued in an alleged Apple Watch render from @LeaksApplePro (opens in new tab).
Told you it was disappointing.Upon receiving CAD files and images, this will be the only noticeable change in design from the Series 7 to the Series 8.More info soon at @iDropNews pic.twitter.com/GQC40eIwk3November 18, 2021
LeaksApplePro claims a slightly different speaker grille (a set of parallel openings instead of just one) is the "only noticeable change in design" arriving with the Apple Watch 8. It's the kind of thing you might miss unless you had the two side by side, though.
Te leaker’s full Apple Watch 8 rumor on iDropNews (opens in new tab) also mentions a light green color option spotted in prototype form “similar to the iPad Air.”
Apple Watch 8: It’s what’s on the inside that counts
The good news is that with such marginal changes on the outside, Apple could be focused on serious improvements to Apple Watch 8's internals. Or as LeaksApplePro puts it: “this will force Apple to include amazing new features in this next device.”
Unfortunately, the leaker doesn’t have any insights on what these new features might be at this early stage. But the smart money would be on health sensors, and plenty of them.
Back in May, SEC documents revealed that Apple was the largest customer of a company called Rockley Photonics, which specializes in sensors for medical equipment, designed to measure a whole host of metrics including lactate, alcohol, body temperature, carbon monoxide, blood oxygen, blood pressure and blood glucose. At the time, CEO Andrew Rickman stated that he expected the company’s technology to be in consumer products in 2022.
While LeaksApplePro believes 2022 could be too early for the long rumored blood sugar measurement, it wouldn’t be too surprising if one or more of the other sensors make their debut in the Apple Watch 8. And that, along with possible upgrades to performance and battery life, could be a game changer.