Review: Apple Watch Series 5

WatchOS 6 - S5 with 64‑bit dual-core processor
Aluminium, steel, cermamic, titanium or gold
Rubber, silicone, leather, or sport
Two sapphire glasses
Water Resistance
< 50 metres
40mm, 42mm or 44mm
Set crown
2 years
£348 - 1,400

Apple has upgraded the Apple Watch to the Series 5. The design has not changed, but it comes with a few new features. It seems to be some way ahead of its competition. Let me expound.


Here, there is a significant change. Series 5 has a feature that has never been available on the Apple Watch until now; it has an always-on display, which means it shows the time all the time. The watch responds immediately when you lift your wrist. It helps you see the time when you get it to glance, thus, eases the pain point. Also, it used to be impossible to check the watch to see your data when you are doing push-ups, but now it is featured on the Series 5 watch. The always-on display now displays workouts, yet reducing another pain point.

There is more to the Series 5’s always-on display than just a skeleton-style ambient mode. Pick a fitting watch face, and it is very nearly the same type of regular version. Apple had to elongate the battery life and make it stronger to make this feature work. Speaking of watch faces, there is a line of new ones, most of which are open to personalisations; there are different outstanding winners. The California watch face is alluring, but the Numerals Duo has a bold and straightforward character to it. It is not difficult to match the colour of the numbers with the strap on your watch for a brilliant uniform look.

The WatchOS 6 is installed on the Series 5 and open to older generations too. It has some interesting new features. The Apple Watch and WatchOS 6 function so well together, with thrilling action and comfortable fast-to-learn user experience, it tops all other wearable brands. It is also interesting to use. It has an excellent haptic response, which is superbly palpable against your wrist or finger, and utilising the Digital Crown to zoom in and out of the app screen still looks fantastic even after all this time.

Apple Watch Series 5 44mm Gold Stainless Steel (Raspberry leather strap)


Set side by side, the Series 4 and Series 5 look physically the same. Nothing has changed. The case still comes in two sizes; a 44mm case or a little bit smaller 40mm if your wrist is very slim. The case remains a svelte 10.7mm, and the 44mm model weighs just 36 grams. It is not glaring or clamming for attention on your wrist. The watch has a curvy case that tightly hugs the skin and designed to minimise discomfort. 

Apple Watch Series 5 44mm Aluminium Space Grey (Orange strap)
Apple Watch Series 5 44mm Aluminium Space Grey (Orange strap)

It is quite clear the designer is undoubtedly familiar with the watches. The design of the timepiece has become a classic in the world of smartwatches. Apple Watch Series 5 has a larger screen, and the body is still uncompromised, only utterly appealing. The design of the watch has not shifted because there is no need. This design has become iconic. 

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The build quality and the presentation are impeccable. It is packaged in a lengthy box that is unforgettable and fondly to open. Inside it is the case clothed in a little, smooth, protective bag. The strap is disconnected, and if you purchase the Sport Band version, it even features medium and long size choices in the box. The case is fragile but enduring, and also the aluminium model, which is the most affordable, feels unusually high quality. The matte-finished, space-grey case, coupled here with the white Sport Band, is simple, fashionable, and beautifully made. It’s as best as mobile products get.

Fitness and Health Tracking

The Apple Watch is the only fitness and health tracker you should only have on your wrist. It manages steps, calories, hourly movement, relaxation, VO2 Max data, hours spent standing, and workout tracking for all movements, including swimming and biking, and activity like yoga. 

Apple Watch Series 5 Health Tracking Features
Apple Watch Series 5 Health Tracking Features

There is a new trends section in the Activity app on your iPhone that gives useful information on your activity level as time goes on. This feature develops a thorough picture of your health over time, and the ancillary tracking that is lifesaving. The longer it stays on the wrist, the more information it absorbs, and the more trends are shown, aiding you to improve your lifestyle for the better.

The Activity app on your iPhone collects and saves information, and when it observes you have not been frequent, it recommends ways to get better. Lots of everyday motivational apps are available too. It works because it is simple, though the simplicity does not mean it is uninteresting or provides useless data.

Battery and Functionality

The always-on screen does, however, have a drawback, as it takes much of the battery power. Saying this though, the watch can be used for almost 1.5 days on a single charge. It takes about an hour to recharge.

Apple Watch Series 5 40mm Stainless Steel (Green leather strap)
Apple Watch Series 5 40mm Stainless Steel (Green leather strap)

The usage and battery life expectancy will be quite different. It is very likely to quickly have a low battery if you use the call features on a cellular Apple Watch, or a long time of fitness tracking with GPS and heart rate monitoring. Still, a day is very feasible, though new features are putting more pressure on the Series 5 battery. But it is reasonable to charge a smartwatch each day.

You can switch to the stainless steel, ceramic or titanium Apple Watch. There are only little differences in texture or build. Though they are more long-lasting and extravagant, it is not noticeable unless you pronounce it, so stick with the aluminium and expend the rest of the money on setting up a collection of alternative straps instead.

Apple Watch Series 5 44mm Nike Space Grey Aluminium (Sport band)
Apple Watch Series 5 44mm Nike Space Grey Aluminium (Sport band)


The Apple Watch Series 5 is on sale on Apple’s online store, its retail stores, and partner addresses. The aluminium body is priced at £318 for the 42mm and £342 for the 44mm or £398 for the GPS and Cellular 42mm model and £422 for the 44mm model. The stainless steel Apple Watch starts at £558, the titanium version from £637, the ceramic from £1,036, and the Hermés version starts from £996.

Apple Watch Hermes Series 5 44mm Stainless Steel Double Tour

Apple offers a twelve-months warranty against production flaws but also provides AppleCare+ for a more extensive coverage plan, but this will cost you £39 for two years.

Review: Apple Watch Series 5
Final Thoughts
The new Apple Watch Series 5 brings some clever innovations to ensure it's always ready to use such as the always-on display. With the added features of workout detection, tap to pay, heart rate monitoring and GPS+cellular capabilities, the Apple Watch Series 5 is certainly the go to smartwatch this year.
Always-on display
Great features
Unique and customisable straps
Average battery life
Better alternatives at price point
Editor's Score
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