Apple Watch Ultra 2 Review: Greatness, supersized

The Apple Watch Ultra 2 is for those who want the best smartwatch around, price no bar

The Apple Watch Ultra 2, much like its predecessor or the iPhone 15 Pro Max, isn’t for everyone. It’s for those who push their gear to the limit and beyond, an audience that knows that their ninety-thousand rupees are spent on a very specific Apple Watch that can go higher or deeper than the average consumer grade smartwatch. And it does so, with aplomb, sharing the same larger (49 mm), more durable titanium case, which allows the Watch Ultra 2 to be strapped on for recreational scuba diving (40 m) or survive high altitudes (up to 9000m), extreme temperatures (-20 to 55° C) and other environmental hazards.

Externally, the biggest change for the Ultra 2 is a 50 per cent increase in screen brightness to 3,000 nits, making for better outdoor visibility and a boosted flashlight when it’s dark. None of this comes at the expense of battery life, with the Ultra 2 rocking similar longevity as the original, two days on a single charge with heart rate tracking and always-on display enabled, sufficient for overnight work trips without having to pack in the charger… or for endurance athletes, about 12 hours of GPS with no loss of functions.

The watch holds charge for two days.
The watch holds charge for two days.

Credit for gains in power efficiency go to the S9 system in package chip, an upgrade from last year's S8 that allows for the handy double tap gesture for one-handed operation, faster on-device Siri processing, and more precise ability to find its companion iPhone 15 faster.

About double tap, which rolled out recently with the Series 9 and Watch Ultra 2. The gesture lets you double-pinch your thumb and forefinger on the watch hand in quick succession, and it’ll be like you tapped on the screen. Works well for incoming calls, scrolling through notifications, playing/pausing music, and all sorts of useful places…and beats reaching across the handlebar when I’m cycling to tap something on the screen.

Bear in mind - if you intend to push your smartwatch for longer during adventure activities, you may want to consider options from Garmin… of course, at the cost of giving up a lot of the “smart”watch capabilities that make the Apple Watch popular.

It comes with a bigger screen too
It comes with a bigger screen too

Finally, what if you’re a normie who wonders about the appeal of the bigger Apple Watch? First, that increase in screen surface area makes itself felt each time you use the watch, whether it’s for viewing more widgets/complications on the watch face, viewing walking/driving directions or using the on-screen keyboard – everything benefits from the bump up in size.

That added durability on the titanium case and the sapphire display should also let the watch scratch less and age slower…and then there’s the near-doubling of battery life! However, it is significantly thicker (though not quite that much heavier), so take a walk over to the nearest Apple retailer if you’re even the slightest bit concerned about how it looks on your wrist.

Rating: 8/10

Price: INR 89,900

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