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Apple Watch 7 reportedly coming in two larger sizes — and it could be a game changer

Apple Watch 7 redesign
(Image credit: Jon Prosser & Ian Zelbo)

The Apple Watch 7 is already rumored for a pretty big redesign, and that could include two new larger sizes. This is literally a big deal, as the Apple Watch could become more independent of the iPhone. 

According to a leaker named UnclePan on the Chinese social platform Weibo (via MacRumors), the Apple Watch 7 may come in larger 41mm and 45mm case sizes. This would replace the 40mm and 44mm options on the Apple Watch Series 6. 

By comparison, the standard Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 comes in a 40mm model and 44mm model, so both of the Apple Watch 7 options would be bigger than the baseline version of Samsung's latest smartwatch. The Classic model comes in 42mm and 46mm versions though, so Samsung would still offer a larger smartwatch than Apple.

The good news is that the leaker claims that the best Apple Watch bands for 40mm and 44mm Apple Watches will continue to work with the newer 41mm and 45mm Apple Watch 7 models. So those upgrading to a new Apple Watch would hopefully be able to keep using their current bands.

An earlier Apple Watch 7 leak by Front Page Tech's Jon Prosser pointed to this possibility. At the time, he said "the display will likely stay the same as it has been for the past few generations, though, at least from what I've heard, they have tested prototypes with even smaller bezels and more screen."

There are a number of possible benefits for a larger Apple Watch, including the ability to more often use the Apple Watch 7 on its own without the need for an iPhone. The larger panel would make it easier to do everything from sending messages to checking out photos. In addition, the already unveiled watchOS 8 is adding support for digital keys, so people can get into cars, hotel rooms and more with a wrist-based virtual wallet.

Prosser also said that Apple was "working on experimental colors" as part of a redesign that should include flatter edges, similar to the design language for the iPhone 12 and iPad Pro

More recently, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman reported on the possible Apple Watch 7 upgrades. He noted the flatter design as well, in addition to slimmer bezels, an updated processor and a new Time to Run mode. He reported that Apple is testing a new lamination technique that raises the display closer to the top cover.

Other possible upgrades for the Apple Watch 7 include new swim tracking features and larger batteries, though a rumor claiming the watch would add blood glucose monitoring has been shot down for this year. 

The Apple Watch 7 may be slightly thicker than its predecessors, but we're willing to bet that lots of shoppers will be willing to make that trade-off for a larger display. 

Mark Spoonauer

Mark Spoonauer is the global editor in chief of Tom's Guide and has covered technology for nearly 20 years. In addition to overseeing the direction of Tom's Guide, Mark specializes in covering all things mobile, having reviewed dozens of smartphones and other gadgets. He has spoken at key industry events and appears regularly on TV to discuss the latest trends. Mark was previously editor in chief of Laptop Mag, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc. Follow him on Twitter at @mspoonauer.