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Yikes — Apple Watch SE owners reporting scary overheating problem

Apple Watch SE review
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The Apple Watch SE — the new midrange model launched alongside the Apple Watch Series 6 — might have a major performance issue. Some users in South Korea are reporting that their smartwatches are overheating, causing discomfort and display damage. 

MacRumors (opens in new tab) reports that six Apple Watch SE owners based in South Korea shared images of what appear to be burnt OLED displays. This Reddit thread (opens in new tab) reveals both GPS and GPS with Cellular models in at least two different case colors have overheated after several hours of use. 

(Image credit: MacRumors)

The Reddit thread chronicles all the known complaints about this troubling Apple Watch SE issue. It seems the reports are limited to South Korea, although it's unclear whether the problem could impact more models. One Reddit user pointed out that the screen damage is taking place above the display connectors near the Taptic Engine, though.

No spot on the Apple Watch's small display is convenient for a yellow burn-like mark, but the consistent corner where the mark materialized is exactly where you would view the time in low-power mode. 

Luckily, we haven't experienced any kind of irregular heating or display markings on our Apple Watch SE model since the smartwatch came out in September. It's possible the problems are limited to select users in South Korea, but until more information is known keep an eye on your Apple Watch SE for overheating.

Kate Kozuch is an editor at Tom’s Guide covering smartwatches, TVs and everything smart-home related. Kate also appears on Fox News to talk tech trends and runs the Tom's Guide TikTok account (opens in new tab), which you should be following. When she’s not filming tech videos, you can find her on an exercise bike, mastering the NYT Crossword or channeling her inner celebrity chef. 


  • mejustsayin
    they are wearing it wrong :-) Seriously, that is not good. It is being reported as a Korea issue, it may be something all apple se watch owners need to be aware of. Don't want them overheat to the point of bursting into flames on a charger in the middle of the night or wearing them while sleeping.
    Reply