Apple Watch Series 6 tidbits: Faster charging, 5GHz WiFi, Solo Loop and Braided Solo compatibility

Apple today officially unveiled the new Apple Watch Series 6, bringing new color options, faster performance, and support for blood oxygen level monitoring. Here are some additional details on the Apple Watch Series 6, new Apple Watch bands, and more.

Apple Watch

Apple no longer offers the Apple Watch Series 6 in stainless steel space black, unless you opt for the Hermès model with the Double Tour band. Instead, Apple has a stainless steel graphite option for the Apple Watch Series 6 that looks similar, but slightly lighter.

New Apple Watch faces

During today’s event, Apple showcased a variety of new Apple Watch faces, and based on the iOS 14 and watchOS 7 golden master releases to developers, these new watch faces are not exclusive to the new Series 6. This means at least Apple Watch Series 4 and Series 5.

There are seven new Apple Watch faces in total, including Stripes, Chronograph Pro, GMT, Artist, Memoji, and Count Up for tracking lap times.

Spec tidbits

The Apple Watch Series 6 is the first Apple Watch to support 5GHz Wi-Fi, which was an omission that had started to frustrate some users.

Apple also indicates that the new Apple Watch Series 6 will charge 20% faster than the Series 5. This is especially notable given that many Apple Watch users will be looking for faster charging in conjunction with sleep tracking.

Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop details

In addition to the Apple Watch Series 6 itself, Apple today also unveiled new Apple Watch band choices, including the Solo Loop and the Braided Solo Loop. These bands feature a seamless design with no clasps, buckles, or overlapping parts.

Interestingly, however, Apple says that the Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop are compatible with Apple Watch Series 4 and later. This excludes the Series 3 and earlier, even though Apple still sells the Series 3 as part of its Apple Watch lineup. This marks the first time that a new Apple Watch band has excluded the Series 3 and earlier.

Apple explains:

You can match most bands with any Apple Watch Series 3 or newer case of the same size. (For Apple Watch Series 3, the 40mm band works with the 38mm case; the 44mm band works with the 42mm case.)

The Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop bands are only compatible with Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 4 or newer. The 40mm case works with band sizes 1–9; the 44mm case works with band sizes 4–12.

One possibility is that the fit between the Series 3 design and the new Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop isn’t perfect but that in the real world, they actually will work together. We’ll have to wait until we get some hands-on time to confirm.

A few other tidbits regarding new Apple Watch bands:

  • “New” Milanese Loop options in gold and graphite
  • The new Leather Link is available for 38/42mm and 42/44mm Apple Watch models. This is a change from the Leather Loop, which is traditionally available only to the larger sizes.
  • The Solo Loop is made from liquid silicone rubber rather than fluoroelastomer.

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