Apple looks set to kill the Apple Watch 3 this week

apple watch 3 on wrist
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

It looks like the Apple Watch 3’s days are officially numbered. After being on sale for almost five years, the smartwatch has started dropping out of stock on the Apple website. MacRumors notes that three out of four Apple Watch 3 models are out of stock in the U.K. and Australia, while one model is unavailable in the U.S. 

There are two other important facts to take into consideration here as well. The first is that there’s an Apple event happening this Wednesday (September 7), and we’re expecting to see as many as three new Apple Watch models. It’s also been confirmed that the Apple Watch 3 will not be compatible with watchOS 9, which is likely to start rolling out in the coming weeks.

In other words, it looks like the Apple Watch 3’s days are numbered. And considering how close we are to the launch of new Apple products, that number might not be very large. We’ve long suspected this event would mark the end of the Apple Watch 3, and it already seems like we were right on the money.

Apple typically isn’t vocal about the discontinuation of products. Instead products have a habit of disappearing from Apple’s online store, and eventually get added to the company’s list of vintage or obsolete products

The next Apple event is looking to be a big day for the Apple Watch. While plenty of speculation has surrounded the iPhone 14 range, there have been rumors of multiple watches appearing at the show. That includes the Apple Watch Series 8, an Apple Watch SE 2 and possibly even a high-end Apple Watch Pro.

We could see the Apple Watch SE 2 then become a replacement for the Apple Watch 3 as well as the original Apple Watch SE, as the cheapest smartwatch in Apple's roster. Prices for the Watch SE started at $279, so perhaps we could see the Watch SE 2 follow the same pricing convention. 

Despite the Apple Watch 3’s longevity, the Apple Watch 4 and Apple Watch 5 didn’t get quite the same treatment from Apple. Both models have long been discontinued, and Apple doesn’t even seem to sell refurbished Apple Watch 4 models anymore. However, both models will get watchOS 9 upgrades when the software is released.

Tom Pritchard
UK Phones Editor

Tom is the Tom's Guide's UK Phones Editor, tackling the latest smartphone news and vocally expressing his opinions about upcoming features or changes. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining about how terrible his Smart TV is.