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Our Favorite Fitness Features of the New Apple Watch Series 3

As anticipated, Apple really took things to the next level with their just-announced iPhone 8 and iPhone X (they had us at Portrait Mode for selfies and wireless charging) and Apple TV 4K, which will put your standard HD to shame. But the product we're most excited about? The Apple Watch Series 3. (FYI, this comes right after Fitbit's announcement that they're entering the smartwatch game for the first time.) 

"It's the number-one watch in the world," Apple CEO Tim Cook said during the Apple keynote event, citing a 50 percent year-on-year sales growth last quarter. And we imagine things can only go up from here considering the one major upgrade from the previous two models: For the first time ever, the watch will be available with cellular service, which shares the same phone number as your mobile device. So if you’re out for a run, or just running errands, you’ll be able to stay connected, make calls, receive texts and use apps, even without your iPhone nearby. Starting at $329 without cellular and $399 with service, the Series 3 will come in three colors: space gray, rose gold (insert hearts-in-eyes emoji), and silver.

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But what makes it a must-have for the fit junkie? Let's talk four major highlights of the new Apple Watch Series 3:

1. Activity app gets a much-needed facelift.

To sum it up, the new operating system debuting this fall is next-level. Within it, the new Activity app gives suggestions more tailored for the user, plus personalized notifications each morning on how to earn more Achievements or improve upon yesterday's activity. Plus, they're helping you close all three Activity rings (one for total movement, one for activity, and one for each hour you stand up during the day) in a new way. When your day's coming to an end, your watch will tell you exactly how long you should walk around to close your "Move" activity ring (hallelujah).

Also: You'll be able to take two workouts together now. So, if you're someone who likes to run then hit some strength work, you can record both of those independently but pair them as one workout. Barry's Bootcamp fans, we're looking at you.

2. GymKit will change the way you look at cardio equipment for-ev-er (like, Sandlot style).

With GymKit, a new software from Apple available for the Series 3, users will be able to pair their device directly to equipment at their go-to sweat spot, like ellipticals, indoor bikes, stair steppers, and treadmills. You'll be able to take home the data in front of you, including calories, distance, speed, floors climbed, pace, and incline, which means no more discrepancy between what the machines say and what your watch does (worst, amirite?). Best part: Big names in the space, like Life Fitness and Technogym, have partnered with the company to make communication between the two devices seamless. (Related: Apple Releases Powerful Video Proving the Importance of Inclusive Fitness Tech)

3. Say hello to upgraded heart-rate monitoring.

Before, you were really only getting an update on your heart rate mid-workout. Now, the heart-rate app can give you a notification if your pulse skyrockets when you aren't active. It also measures recovery and resting heart rate. (FYI, you can also try out the Breathe app, which will guide you through a deep breathing session and give you a heart-rate summary at the end.)  

4. Your playlist is going to get better.

The new Music app is fire (and looks bomb, too). Redesigned, it automatically syncs your Favorites, New Music, and Most Listened mixes to your wrist. That means you can say goodbye to that annoying bounce-in-your-pocket sensation that comes with bringing your phone for a run. Pair your device via Bluetooth to AirPods to listen to music on the move.

 

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