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Apple Watch 7 rumors — 3 biggest upgrades to expect

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

It's possible we'll see an exciting Apple Watch 7 launch during the Apple Event on Tuesday, September 14. Along with a new flagship iPhone and perhaps an iPad and refreshed AirPods, Apple could reveal its latest smartwatch with a modern design, improved specs and more.

We know this because Apple Watch 7 rumors have ramped up in recent weeks. From production line intel to multiple mentions of an Apple Watch 7 battery life boost, we have a good idea of what the next-generation has in store.

Of course, there's still some details we won't learn until an official announcement, like the Apple Watch 7 price and whether it'll get any of the health upgrades that are reportedly in the company's pipeline.

But whether you’re looking to upgrade your current Apple Watch, or are simply curious about how the best smartwatch plans to become even better, you should get up to speed on the most important Apple Watch 7 rumors.

Here are the three biggest Apple Watch 7 upgrades we expect to see. 

Apple Watch 7 rumors: New design with bigger displays

It's all but confirmed the Apple Watch 7 will look different than the Apple Watch models we've seen in the past. The Apple Watch's appearance has remained virtually unchanged since the first model debuted in 2016, but the iconic squircle could be tweaked to better follow the design language of newer, flat-edged iPhones, namely the iPhone 12.

Rumors of a flat-sided Apple Watch surfaced when leaker Jon Prosser shared a series of renders earlier this year. At the time, Prosser said his sources could've passed along intel for a different future Apple Watch — not the Apple Watch 7. But another set of renders published in August revealed plans for a redesign. The reportedly-leaked CAD files, shared by 91Mobiles tease the flat Apple Watch 7, level display with limited bezels included. 

Apple Watch Series 7 colors — here's what the rumors suggest

(Image credit: Jon Prosser & Ian Zelbo)

Beyond the fresh look, the Apple Watch 7 could also get bigger. The Apple Watch sizes are reportedly growing from 40mm and 44mm to 41mm and 45mm. This might not sound like a significant change but millimeters make a difference on the wrist. 

Though current Apple Watch bands might not fit the Apple Watch 7, the size increase is a major step towards making Apple's smartwatch a more independent device.

Apple Watch 7 rumors: Updated connectivity

The Apple Watch's interior could also be slated for an upgrade. According to Bloomberg, the Apple Watch 7 will include "updated ultra-wideband (UWB) functionality." Apple included its U1 chip in the Apple Watch 6 last year, but it could improve the chip or the chip's role in the Apple Watch radio communications for the upcoming model.

Interest in the company's positioning tech gained momentum with the launch of Apple AirTag keyfinders. As we've seen with AirTags, UWB radios provide precise location and spatial awareness, letting compatible devices determine their exact positions in respect to other devices in the vicinity.

Apple Watch 7 leak

(Image credit: Jon Prosser & Ian Zelbo)

The watchOS 8 software shipping on Apple Watch 7 also adds the Find My app for locating your other Apple devices. It's also getting added support for digital keys, so people could get into cars, hotel rooms and more with a wrist-based virtual wallet. Considering the pace of Apple's U1 chip improvements and new features, we expect enhanced connectivity features or functions for the next-gen smartwatch.

Apple Watch 7 rumors: Improved battery life

More than one Apple tipster has suggested the upcoming refresh will feature a significant battery improvement compared to previous generations. Of all the Apple Watch 7 rumors, this is the one we're most excited about.

No longer will the Apple Watch be rated for 18 hours, claims leaker Max Weinbach via his Pineleaks Twitter account. In a lengthy thread shared recently, Weinbach made claims about the iPhone 13AirPods 3 and, yes, Apple Watch 7. Apparently Apple's flagship smartwatch will "see its first real battery life improvement."

Apple Watch 7 leak

(Image credit: Jon Prosser & Ian Zelbo)

Earlier this year, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also alluded to boosted battery life, referencing rumors of a double-sided System in Package (SiP) that would free up space inside the Apple Watch. 

We can't say for sure what battery life improvement means to Apple, though we'd expect a couple more hours tacked on to the familiar 18-hour estimate. At best the Apple Watch 7 could last about two days like the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, but we're not getting our hopes up for anything more than that.

Be sure to follow our Apple Watch 7 coverage for last-minute rumors ahead of Tuesday. Check out our guide on how to watch the Apple Event so you can follow along with the product announcements in real-time, too.

Kate Kozuch

Kate Kozuch is a senior writer at Tom’s Guide covering wearables, TVs and everything smart-home related. When she’s not in cyborg mode, you can find her on an exercise bike or channeling her inner celebrity chef. She and her robot army will rule the world one day, but until then, reach her at kate.kozuch@futurenet.com.