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Faster Apple Watch 1 Models Said to Launch Alongside Apple Watch 2 Later This Year
In addition to predicting an all-new Apple Watch 2 with a GPS, barometer, larger battery, and more, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo 2016 today claimed that upgraded first-generation Apple Watch models with faster TSMC-built processors and superior waterproofing will likely launch in the second half of 2016.
Kuo said the upgraded Apple Watch 1 models will not have a GPS, barometer, or other larger additions reserved for the Apple Watch 2, nor will the waterproofing improvements be as significant, suggesting only an incremental refresh of internal hardware. The watches are said to retain a similar form factor.
The well-connected analyst expects another Apple Watch price cut once the new models are launched, but he did not specify whether the reduction will apply to existing first-generation models, upgraded first-generation models, Apple Watch 2 models, or some combination of the three lineups. Apple lowered the starting price of the Apple Watch Sport to $299 in March 2016, a savings of $50 compared to the device's initial $349 launch price in April 2015.
Apple has been pushing iPhone and Apple Watch sales together, so updated models of each device launching in tandem would be appropriate. The tentatively named iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are rumored to launch on September 16, with pre-orders possibly starting a week earlier on September 9, so all-new Apple Watch 2 and upgraded Apple Watch 1 models could debut around those dates.
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