Report: Apple might finally be ready to kill off its Apple Watch Series 3

Apple Watch Series 3
Apple Watch Series 3 (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple will not support Apple Watch Series 3 when watchOS 9 ships this year, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.
  • Ming-Chi Kuo believes that Apple will discontinue Apple Watch Series 3 this year.

A new report by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo suggests that App,e might finally be getting ready to kill off the zombie product that is the Apple Watch Series 3. The reason, Kuo says, is a lack of support for watchOS 9 that is likely to ship later this year.

Many had expected Apple to ditch its Apple Watch Series 3 when the Apple Watch Series 7 shipped last year, but that didn't happen. The current Apple Watch SE is a better buy than Apple Watch Series 3 and has been for some time, but now Apple might finally be getting ready to put its aging wearable out to pasture. Kuo says that the next major release of watchOS simply won't be supported by Apple Watch Series 3 because it won't have the required processing power.

Kuo shared the observations via Twitter today.

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Apple's current watchOS 8 does support Apple Watch Series 3, but that now seems likely to change when watchOS 9 is announced at WWDC22. All being well, that's likely to happen in June although we don't yet know whether it will be an in-person affair or an online-only event as it has been the last couple of years.

The suggestion that the older Apple Watch Series 3 won't be able to handle watchOS 9 is an exciting one, too. That would suggest that Apple has new features or capabilities in mind that would push the older watch beyond its limits. While watchOS 8 has improved since its introduction in 2015, most would agree that it's time for a leap in capabilities in terms of apps and more.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.