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Smart Living | 17 Sep 2020

New Apple Watch Series 6, Watch SE and iPad available to order from Vodafone UK

Powerful new iPads along with colourful, improved and more affordable Apple Watch models are on their way.

Apple has announced its latest range of smartwatches: the advanced Apple Watch Series 6 and the even more affordable Apple Watch SE. It as also unveiled a faster iPad and a totally revamped iPad Air.

The iPad and Apple Watches are available for order now from the Vodafone UK online store, with the new iPad Air coming soon.

Vodafone is the only UK mobile network operator to offer an extended warranty for all of Apple’s new products.

Apple Watch Series 6

The new Series 6 replaces the Series 5 as the flagship of the Apple Watch range. The Series 6 builds upon the wellness and fitness features that the Apple Watch range is known for. It has the ability to monitor your blood oxygen levels, which Apple claims is a key indicator of your overall health.

For hikers and mountain climbers, the more power-efficient altimeter can now continuously track your elevation as it changes in real-time from the watch face. The altimeter in previous models was limited to tracking your elevation while using workout apps.

 

animated GIF of the blood oxygen monitor feature on the Apple Watch Series 6
The new Series 6 is the only Apple Watch capable of monitoring your blood oxygen levels

The preceding Series 5, unlike most other smartwatches, had an always-on display so you could tell the time with a glance rather than tapping the screen or raising your wrist. It achieved this feat using a special low-power display technology that dimmed the screen’s brightness and the number of times the screen refreshed its contents every minute. The Series 6 not only retains this always-on display, but improves upon it with higher brightness levels due to the increased power-efficiency of its new S6 processor.

Of course, smartwatches are as much about style and individualism as they are about features. The Series 6 is available in eye-catching new blue and red colours as well as a refined graphite option in addition to the familiar grey and silver.

You can share the same phone number between your iPhone and Apple Watch Series 6 on the Vodafone UK network. To pre-order the Series 6, from £27 a month (£19 upfront cost), visit the Vodafone UK store.

Apple Watch SE

Much like the iPhone SE, the Apple Watch SE has the most essential features of its higher-end stablemate at a lower price. Although the SE doesn’t have the always-on display of the Series 6, it’s otherwise just as large and bright. Plus it has almost all of the same wellness and fitness tracking features, from fall detection to irregular heart rhythm notifications, and the continuous altimeter. The exceptions are blood oxygen monitoring and ECG readings.

The emergency SOS feature on Apple Watch SE
Like its stablemates, the Apple Watch SE can detect if you’ve taken a fall and offer to call the emergency services

The SE is available in a narrower range of available colours and finishes, but it does have the same S5 processor as the Series 5. This means it’ll continue to receive software updates for years to come.

Learn more about Vodafone UK’s price plans for the Apple Watch SE, starting at £20 a month (£19 upfront cost).

iPad (eighth generation)

The most affordable iPad appears unchanged on the outside, with the same 10.2in screen and compatibility with the optional Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard. Inside though, it’s now equipped with the speedy A12 processor – the same chip that debuted in the iPhone XS, XS Max and XR. Its impressive processing power will ensure the new iPad has the oomph to handle tasks such as editing photos and video or playing games.

 

image of photo editing on an Apple iPad 8th generation
The eighth generation Apple iPad has an A12 processor, a speedy chip previously reserved for higher-end Apple touchscreen devices

Benchmarking specialists nPerf named Vodafone as the UK’s best mobile data network. The new iPad 10.2 can take advantage of that network with one of Vodafone UK’s Unlimited data plans – learn more and pre-order now from £42 per month (£25 upfront cost).

iPad Air (fourth generation)

You’d be forgiven for mistaking the newly revamped iPad Air for its higher-end stablemate, the iPad Pro. Both have expansive high-resolution displays that occupy almost the entire front face of the tablet, as well as minimalist, flat-sided metal casings.

The previous iPad Air had far wider borders around its screen, in part to accommodate its home button which incorporated the Touch ID fingerprint sensor for logging in and securely authorising online purchases. This new model moves the Touch ID sensor to the power button on the side, allowing more space for a larger, more immersive screen without drastically increasing the iPad Air’s overall size.

photo showing the different colours of the fourth generation Apple iPad Air
The fourth generation iPad Air is available in a wider range of colours compared to other iPads

The similarities between the casings of this new iPad Air and the iPad Pro means that the former can use accessories designed for the latter. From the second-generation Apple Pencil, which magnetically snaps to the side of the iPad Air for recharging and storage, to the laptop-style Magic Keyboard which has large keys and a touchpad similar to those found on Apple’s MacBook laptops.

The iPad Air also eschews the Lightning port in favour of a USB-C port. This not only means you can charge it using the charger for your laptop or Nintendo Switch. You can also attach peripherals such as monitors, hard disks and even MIDI keyboards – although you may need adapters to do so, depending on the peripheral.

The new iPad Air doesn’t just ape the iPad Pro though, it has a few tricks all its own. It’s the first iOS/iPadOS device to have the next generation A14 processor, which makes it faster than any iPhone currently available. It may even be just as fast as the iPad Pro in some tasks. Plus, this is the first time since 2011 that an iPad has received a new generation processor before an iPhone.

In terms of aesthetics, the new iPad Air will be available in a wider range of colours from the usual rose gold, silver and grey to new green and blue shades. It will be available soon on Vodafone UK’s Unlimited data plans.