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Apple Watch SE 2 rumor claims huge upgrades are incoming

Gift ideas 2020: Best tech gifts of the year: Apple Watch SE
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The first Apple Watch SE 2 feature rumor has appeared, and it's got a comprehensive description of Apple's supposedly upcoming entry-level smartwatch, thanks to the sources of leaker LeaksApplePro (writing for iDropNews).

From the sounds of it, the Apple Watch SE 2 is going to be a big upgrade from the Apple Watch SE that's been around since September 2020. And could have enough features to tempt users away from the Apple Watch 8.

According to LAP, the SE 2 is going to borrow some parts from last year's Apple Watch 7, like its S7 processor and battery, as well as potentially the same fast charging tech. Apple's also apparently going to arm the SE 2 with an always-on display, upgraded speakers, and an ECG reader, which would all be new, and welcome, features for potential users.

There won't be any blood oxygen monitoring ability for the Watch SE 2 though, LAP continues. Plus, the design is apparently not changing from the existing Apple Watch SE, which means a smaller display for its size than the Apple Watch 7 gets.

Users will be able to pick from 40mm and 44mm sizes as with other Apple Watches, but there may only be the option of an aluminum frame again, rather than the titanium or stainless steel options the flagship Apple Watches get. LAP doesn't mention color options, but perhaps we'll see the same silver, space gray and gold options Apple has for the current Apple Watch SE.

The final point we'll mention from this rumor is that there could be a price increase on the cards for the Watch SE 2 too, up to $299 from the current $279. That would still be $100 less than a premium Apple Watch though, and would still make it one of the cheaper members of our best smartwatches, assuming it can replicate the original Watch SE's success.

While the Apple Watch 8 could get a body-temperature sensor (or perhaps not, depending on who you believe), and will still offer a better screen, more varied materials and likely a new chip based on current rumors and assumptions, there sounds to be little difference between it and the SE 2. Even if the Series 8 watch is as good as previous generations, it could be hard to justify the extra expense given how many of its features the SE 2 could also have.

We'll probably have to wait until Apple's fall product reveal window to learn the truth about the Apple Watch SE 2 and the Apple Watch 8, plus the rumored Rugged Apple Watch that's also been tipped for this year. As for their new watchOS 9 software, we should be hearing more about that at June's WWDC 2022 event, although rumors on what to expect are currently very quiet.

Richard is a Tom's Guide staff writer based in London, covering news, reviews and how-tos for phones, gaming, audio and whatever else people need advice on. Following on from his MA in Magazine Journalism at the University of Sheffield, he's also written for WIRED U.K., The Register and Creative Bloq. When not at work, he's likely thinking about how to brew the perfect cup of specialty coffee.