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Apple Watch Series 4 review: The best Apple Watch yet

By Kenny Yeo - 19 Sep 2018

Build & Details of the cellular edition

How's the build quality?

According to sources familiar with the development of the Apple Watch, Apple spent a considerable amount of time studying luxury watches when working on the design of the Apple Watch and it shows. Build quality of previous Apple Watches was so good that it even puts more expensive watches to shame. With its expertly machined and finished cases, the latest Apple Watch Series 4 is no different. And it is not just the watch itself that oozes quality, the straps that Apple provides are extremely well made too. Where build quality is concerned, the Apple Watch is peerless.

 

Speaking of straps? Can I use my old straps with these new watches?

The Apple Watch Series 4 is 100% compatible with older straps. Note also the red ring around the Digital Crown denoting that this is cellular-enabled.

Yes, you can. Despite the increase in case size, Apple has thoughtfully designed these new watches such that older straps will still fit. The new 40mm model will accept all older 38mm straps, while the new 44mm model will accept all older 42mm straps.

 

How many versions are there this time?

Just a small sampling of the available variants of the Apple Watch Series 4.

Quite a few, but broadly speaking, there are two main versions: with cellular connectivity and without. The non-cellular Series 4 models, known as the GPS models, are only available with aluminum cases - gold, space grey, and silver.

The models with cellular connectivity are available in both aluminum and stainless steel cases. There are also three stainless steel finishes to choose from: raw polished stainless steel, space black, and gold. You can differentiate the two by looking at the Digital Crown. The models that support cellular connectivity have red rings around their Digital Crowns. The GPS-only models have black rings around their Digital Crowns.

Then there’s also the Nike+ and Hermès models. The Nike+ models are available with and without cellular connectivity but they only come in aluminum cases. The Hermès models, on the other hand, come in a variety of strap options but they are only available with cellular connectivity and in stainless steel cases.

 

Is cellular connectivity still limited to Singtel only?

If you didn't set up mobile data during the initial setup process, simply go to the Watch app and look for the Mobile Data tab.

Yes, cellular connectivity on the Apple Watch Series 4 is still limited to Singtel. You will need Singtel’s NumberShare service to be able to enjoy cellular connectivity on your cellular-enabled Apple Watch.

Setup is straightforward. Users will receive a prompt when they are setting up their Apple Watch Series 4 (GPS + Cellular) for the first time asking if you want to set up NumberShare. You can choose to activate it now or you can skip and do it later by going into the Watch app and selecting the ‘Mobile Data’ tab.

 

If I have the Apple Watch Series 4 (GPS + Cellular), will it work without cellular connectivity?

Yes, it does. It will work just like the non-cellular versions of the Apple Watch.

 

Does it support roaming?

No, it does not.

 

What can the cellular version of the Apple Watch Series 4 do that the non-cellular version cannot?

I have answered this question in my review of the Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) and you can read my response in its entirety here. But very briefly speaking, cellular connectivity makes your Apple Watch much more independent. You can make and take calls, and send text messages without your phone. You can even stream Apple Music directly to your Apple Watch without your phone. Personally, I find cellular connectivity most beneficial for runners or hikers who may not want to take their phones along with them when exercising.

Another thing worth noting is that both GPS-only and GPS + Cellular models will now come with the same amount of internal storage - 16GB. Previously in Series 3, only the GPS + Cellular models had 16GB. The GPS-only Series 3 watches only had 8GB of internal storage.

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8.5
  • Design 9
  • Features 9
  • User-Friendliness 8.5
  • Performance 8
  • Value 8
The Good
Class-leading build quality
Strong design, lots of straps for customization
Improved heart rate monitoring
Improved sensors
50-meter water resistance
Arguably the best fitness watch you can buy
The Bad
ECG feature not available at launch
Needs to be recharged every day
Costs significantly more than last year's models
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