Apple Watch 6 design leak is a major letdown

Apple Watch 5
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Don’t expect the Apple Watch 6 to look much different to its predecessor, the Apple Watch Series 5, or indeed previous versions of Apple’s smartwatch. 

At least that’s what tech leaker Jon Prosser says. The rather accurate Apple oracle tweeted that the next Apple Watch will look the same “as Series 4”; that smartwatch is pretty much identical to the Apple Watch Series 5, with the main changes happening inside the watch. 

There have been other rumors suggesting that the Apple Watch Series 6 could have a circular design, with one concept design showing off what such an Apple Watch could look like. 

And a patent Apple filed hinted that a next-generation Apple Watch could drop the 'digital crown' on the watch's side in favor of an optical sensor sitting flush against the case. But if Prosser's prediction proves accurate, these rumors won't come to fruition in the Apple Watch Series 6. 

However, there's a chance that the next Apple Watch could switch from an OLED display to a microLED screen. That could lead to a slimmer and more power-efficient Apple Watch, so while it may retain the square shape of its predecessor it could still have a major upgrade.  MicroLED displays also offer more brightness and don't suffer the luminance decay problems of OLED panels, so using that screen tech could help boost the next Apple Watch's lifespan. 

Since making its debut back in 2015, the Apple Watch hasn’t changed a great deal on the outside. Apple has refined the chassis in the five years since its release, and the internal specs and capabilities have been boosted a fair bit. 

But the rounded square body and face of the Apple Watch, alongside its slick digital crown, has remained a constant over the past half-decade. It’s pretty easy to spot an Apple Watch among the crowds of other best smartwatches and best fitness trackers

The current design of the Apple Watch has proven to be popular and won is critical acclaim as one of the best smartwatches around. So taking the ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ could be a sensible move for Apple. 

But that's not to say the Apple Watch Series 6 won't be an interesting smartwatch. It's set to get enhanced sleep tracking, as well as a blood oxygen tracking capabilities. Combined these additions could help better manage users' health.  

Apple has already positioned the Apple Watch as a strong health-tracking wearable, given it has been equipped with electrocardiogram features since the Apple Watch Series 4

Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.