Apple Watch Series 5 announced with always-on screen and international emergency calling

Apple Watch Series 5

Apple unveiled the Apple Watch Series 5 with a slew of fancy features that make the world’s best smartwatch even better.

Arguably the most important new capability is an Always-On Retina display that allows the time and important information to remain visible at all times. Each watch face has been optimized for the new display and to preserve battery life, with the screen intelligently dimming when a user’s wrist is down and returning to full brightness with a raise or a tap.

The new technologies used to make this happen include the industry’s only low-temperature polysilicon and oxide display (LTPO), ultra-low power display driver, efficient power management integrated circuit and new ambient light sensor. As a result, Apple Watch Series 5 can work for up to 18 hours on a single charge.

Another new feature of the Series 5 is the built-in compass that, together with the updated Maps app, allows users to see which way they are facing. This, in turn, lets users see heading, incline, latitude, longitude and current elevation. Additionally, there is an option to add one of three new Compass complications to the watch face to see direction at a glance.

Furthermore, the new Apple Watch with cellular connectivity includes support for international emergency calls. This capability works in tandem with fall detection to automatically place an emergency call if Apple Watch senses the user has taken a hard fall and remains motionless for about a minute.

The announcement wasn’t complete without an update to the watchOS platform which is now in version 6, adding new health and fitness features to the mix. Among them are the new Cycle Tracking and Noise apps, and Activity Trends on iPhone which provides a long-term view of user’s activity patterns. Also included are “dynamic new watch faces” such as Meridian, Modular Compact and Solar Dial.

“We’ve seen Apple Watch have a meaningful impact on our customers’ lives and we’re excited to deliver even more capabilities with Apple Watch Series 5 and watchOS 6,” Jeff Williams, Apple’s COO, said in a statement. “The seamless integration of new hardware and software delivers an enhanced experience that makes it even easier to stay active and connected to the people and information users care about.”

The Apple Watch Series 5 comes in a box made out of a few different materials, including classic stainless steel, and new titanium and ceramic. The “Nike version” of the Watch has been announced as well as the Apple Watch Herm├Ęs edition.

Apple Watch Series 5 starts at $399 and Apple Watch Series 5 with cellular connectivity starts at $499. The popular Watch Series 3 (GPS) with built-in GPS optical heart rate sensor and water resistance, starts at a new low price of $199 and Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) is $299.

Apple Watch Series 5 (GPS) is available to order today from and in the Apple Store app, with availability beginning Friday, September 20 in the US, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands and 38 other countries and regions. The cellular version will be available in the US, Puerto Rico and 20 other countries and regions.

As for the Apple Watch Nike, it too can be ordered today, with availability beginning Friday, October 4 in the US, Puerto Rico and more than 51 other countries and regions.

watchOS 6 will be available for Apple Watch Series 3 and later on September 19 and for Apple Watch Series 1 and 2 later this fall.