Apple owns the smartwatch market, and few (if any) smartwatches can match it feature for feature. But while it tracks exercise, it won’t stand up to abuse you might find in high-impact activities. But that might change, as Apple may be working on a rugged version of the Apple Watch.
Internally dubbed an “Explorer Edition,” Bloomberg reports that Apple is internally debating whether to release the rugged Apple Watch later this year or 2022. If it does, it’s likely to be an additional option, much like the Apple Watch SE or Nike models. But that’s assuming Apple decides to release the product at all; it could back out of the plans instead.
If it does release the Apple Watch Explorer Edition, Bloomberg’s sources say it would still have all the same features and capabilities of a standard Apple Watch. But the exterior would drop the current aluminum, steel, and titanium materials in favor of a rubberized case.
According to Bloomberg, Apple considered releasing a rugged Apple Watch back in 2015 but ultimately decided against it. That could easily happen again, of course, and it’s not even clear if Apple created working models yet. For now, we have a codename and a description. Even the name may change.
But considering Apple’s success in the wearable market and the desire to take smartwatches to extreme places, it certainly seems like a viable plan. Only time will tell if Apple decides to move forward or move on from a rugged Apple Watch.