Verizon Novatel MiFi Jetpack 4620L Review: Editor's Choice
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Verizon Novatel MiFi Jetpack 4620L Review: Editor’s Choice

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When Novatel Wireless had launched its original MiFi mobile hotspot a few years ago, it was instantly one of the best device in a mobile road warrior’s arsenal. With a compact credit card size and the ability to connect up to five WiFi-enabled devices to Verizon’s 3G CDMA/EVDO network, the original MiFi offered an easy and quick way to connect to the Internet from almost anywhere and everywhere in the U.S. Now, Novatel has released its third generation MiFi mobile hotspot with incremental changes, but will those changes be enough to keep the MiFi on the top and stand out from the pack?

Video Review

My colleague Josh did a preview of the MiFi 4620L on video and you can watch it below:

History

The MiFi 4620L is essentially a more refined version of last year’s MiFi 4510L, Novatel Wireless’ first 4G LTE MiFi mobile hotspot and the second MiFi on Verizon’s network. That model added a small E-Ink display, along with 4G LTE connectivity, that made the MiFi more usable. With a window into battery life, signal strength, and a blinking LED light that indicated whether you’re connected to a 3G or 4G connection, the 4510L’s incremental change was a huge leap forward in usability.

With the 4620L, there are even more changes while still retaining the overall footprint of the 4510L that will help to create an even better experience, including a larger OLED display, more connectivity options, and optional extended battery life for all-day connectivity.

Hardware

New to this year’s model is a larger display and scroll and select buttons that will make the MiFi 4620L even easier to use than its predecessor. Also new is a world radio that allows users to connect to CDMA/EVDO/LTE on Verizon’s domestic network as well as GSM/HSPA+ worldwide for international roaming. Unfortunately, though, the MiFi 4620L is SIM-locked, so while the world radio does support AT&T’s frequencies, it will not work with rival AT&T’s SIM card for HSPA+ connectivity in the U.S.

The top face is a glossy piano black and has the Jetpack branding and Verizon and 4G LTE branding. There are navigation keys and an OLED display. Also, the chrome border that surrounds last year’s MiFi has been replaced by a soft-touch black bezel, creating a more subtle and sleek device overall. Though these hardware features seem so simple, they actually do make a difference when you’re focusing your time on working on the Internet rather than wasting time getting to understand and diagnose your portable router and modem package.

The OLED display is even more prominent on this model and replaces last year’s simple E-Ink screen. Measuring just over 1.5-inch diagonally, the display is bright and easy to use with soft buttons on the bottom. Navigating the UI is done with the scroll buttons, which are placed towards the center of the device just under the left edge of the display as well as a select button on the right side.

Users of prior MiFi editions will notice that the power button has moved from the top of the device–now you have the navigation hardware buttons–to the top side edge of the device. The power button is easy to press when you need it, but the placement is slightly odd. To activate the OLED display, press the power button in for a second, and to power on or off the MiFi, you’ll have to depress the button for a few seconds.

Old MiFi 4510L on the bottom with power button on the top face.

As the OLED display times out and goes blank to conserve battery life when you don’t need it, you’ll need to reach to that top side edge to re-activate the OLED screen by pressing in the power button. Placement of the power button on the top of the device would be more ergonomic for use if you need access to the display.

Power button on the top side edge on the MiFi 4620L

That said, the OLED panel gives you access to information such as network connectivity (4G or 3G), the WiFi network and password to connect additional devices, battery life and gauge, the number of connected devices presently, any notifications or SMS messages, and the MiFi information and browser address to access the control panel to change settings.

On the bottom side of the device, you’ll have access to an antenna port to connect an external optional antenna to improve reception if needed, a blinking LED light that gives you a visual indicator if the device is connected to Verizon’s 3G, 4G, or a GSM network for roaming, and on the right bottom edge, you’ll have the micro USB port for charging the device.

On the back, you have a battery cover that you can remove by using a fingernail to pry open a notch on the left side edge of the MiFi. The battery cover and sides are covered in a soft touch material, making it pleasant to touch.

There’s also a sticker on the back battery cover that gives you your network SSID information, which begins with MIFI4620L, as well as a password. The same password is used to both connect devices to the WiFi network as well as to change the settings using the web interface. Once you log onto the web interface, you can change the passwords to your liking and can maintain separate passwords for your WiFi network as well as for the web interface.

Removing the back battery cover, you’ll find a small reset button, which can be activated with either a paperclip or pin, to reset settings if you don’t remember passwords that you’ve changed for the network. There’s a 1500 mAh battery and lifting up the battery, you’ll find Verizon’s micro SIM card, which is a bit hard to remove. Users will generally never need to remove the back battery cover once they’ve inserted the micro SIM card initially.

Charging and Battery Life

New to the third-generation MiFi is the ability to now charge from any USB plug. There is a micro USB port on the bottom right side of the device and you can charge the MiFi either through the wall charger or plug a USB to micro USB cable to your PC or Mac to charge. In the past, connecting the cable to a computer would disconnect the MiFi, but now, you can power the MiFi from your laptop while you connect your laptop to a wall outlet, which will be good for coffee house workers who find wall outlets scarce.

With the standard battery, the MiFi 4620L is slightly slimmer than the MiFi 4510L last year. The extended battery does add a bit of depth to the unit, but does double battery life with its 3000 mAh battery. We’ll have to wait for Verizon to announce pricing for the extended battery and the extended battery cover.

Top: MiFi 4620L with extended battery, Bottom: MiFi 4510L

The battery life on the MiFi 4620L Jetpack lasts for between 3-4 hours, depending on how many devices you have connected and what content you’re viewing on the Internet. Streaming video to multiple devices, for example, will run your battery down quicker than if you were to view static webpages, like GottaBeMobile.com.

This year, Novatel Wireless is also releasing an extended battery with an extended battery cover, which doubles the battery capacity of the standard battery. Connected to Verizon’s 4G LTE, I was able to get between 6-8 hours on a single charge. The extended battery is an optional accessory and not included in the box, and Verizon so far as not announced pricing for that accessory.

Connectivity

The MiFi will connect to Verizon’s 3G CDMA/EVDO and 4G LTE network in the U.S. With an expanding and robust national coverage footprint for 4G LTE, you’ll be able to take fast mobile broadband with you on the go. Speeds range between 5-10 Mbps on the download side and between 2-5 Mbps on the upload side. In use, I found that the third-generation MiFi 4620L’s connection stalls less than the MiFi 4510L on my Macbook Pro. On last generation’s device, I frequently had to turn off and on the MiFi completely as the connection would lag on my Mac laptop, but was fine on a PC system. There is less of that on this year’s MiFi 4620L and the device is more reliable in use.

With the MiFi 4620L, users can connect up to ten devices to Verizon’s network.

In addition to Verizon’s network, globe-trotters will be able to connect overseas while traveling, but be expected to pay Verizon roaming fees as the device is SIM-locked. That means you won’t be able to swap the micro SIM card located under the battery with a local SIM card for local coverage. That said, you’ll have the most connectivity options with GSM/HSPA+ overseas in addition to Verizon’s domestic network.

By default, the device will shut off if it’s idle for 30 minutes to conserve battery life. However, you can log into the device’s settings on your computer via the browser to change that to never time out if you wish.

Unfortunately, there isn’t an option for WPS, or WiFi Protected Setup, for easily configuring WiFi devices on this model.

Another good thing about this MiFi is that unlike last year’s model, the device runs cool and I didn’t experience any overheats. On the MiFi 4510L, that device would sometimes overheat and shut off until it cools down. I didn’t get any of that with the 4620L.

Computer Interface

To log into the control panel for the MiFi 4620L, you’ll have to open a browser on your computer and type in either https://192.168.1.1 or https://vz.hotspot. When the control panel is open, you’ll see connectivity, signal strength, and battery life in a bar at the top, and you’ll need to log in with your administrator password. The default admin password is the same as the WiFi password printed on the sticker on the rear battery cover. You can also see the password by using the OLED panel and scrolling to WiFi, and hitting the ‘More’ button to display the password.

Once logged in, you can change your password and change and access a number of settings. You can change the settings to allow the number of devices connected at a single time, setup Mac filtering and port forwarding, and see your network settings.

The only setting I’ve really changed is to set the device to never timeout when inactive.

Compared to Tethering on a Smartphone

Many consumers will ask if they really need a MiFi or mobile hotspot unit especially when many modern smartphones today offering tethering, which allows you to just manage one device and one plan. The answer will depend on your usage needs. Though the hardware cost of a MiFi is relatively inexpensive–the MiFi 4620L costs $50 with a two-year contract and $270 retail–the mobile broadband plans are expensive and start at $50. However, if you don’t want to fiddle with settings and menus on a phone to turn on tethering, the MiFi offers a simple and easy experience as it’s a dedicated device. Furthermore, tethering on a phone will drain the battery quicker and if you tether a lot without charging your phone, you’ll quickly find that your phone’s battery will die in two hours leaving you without a phone for the rest of the day.

If you’re a business user whose company will foot the bill, there’s no reason to not get the MiFi 4620L, especially if you’re on the road a lot. With hotel wireless charges starting at $10 per day, the MiFi’s $50 per month bill will likely pay for itself if you frequently travel and you’ll always have connectivity wherever you go whenever you need it.

Conclusion

Users of the already excellent 4510L will most likely not find many reasons to upgrade to the 4620L unless they need to connect 10 devices simultaneously or global GSM roaming. That said, for new mobile hotspot users, the addition of some hardware navigation buttons and an on-board OLED display with its own UI provide a more refined experience that makes using the MiFi just that much easier. The MiFi 4620L remains one of the top gear in our arsenal and with the extended battery, you can work for even longer periods and not have to worry about being tethered to a power outlet.

The only downside about the MiFi 4620L is that it’s so simple and easy to use that you just want to use it more. Coupled with Verizon’s fast mobile broadband LTE network, users will quickly realize that they’re burning through data quickly as the network and the device are both joys to use. Verizon offers two plans for the MiFi–a 5 GB per month plan for $50 or a 10 GB plan for $80. As you connect more devices and users to your MiFi, just be cautious of how much browsing, surfing, and Internet exploration you do so you don’t run into overages.

This is the best MiFi today and Novatel Wireless’ MiFi is already the best mobile hotspot on the market today. The best really just did get better with the MiFi 4620L Jetpack.

4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. bousozoku

    06/11/2012 at 9:43 pm

    I recently got AT&T’s Sierra Wireless Elevate 4G mobile hotspot, although I’ve been considering Novatel’s device.

    Either one is a few steps above the smart phone-enabled hotspots I’ve used with Android and iOS. Since it’s a single use device, it’s concerned more about communications than pretty graphics. Performance should be important to anyone using such a device.

  2. ITLady

    08/13/2012 at 11:51 am

    I am not sure who is using the MiFi’s but I want to warn you. If you are using the MiFi 4620L Jetpack 4G MiFi’s there is an issue with the display showing the Network name and password on its display if you push the buttons on the device!!! I have called Verizon and they were clueless and they told me to call Novatell. I called and they are aware of this issue and have escalated a fix and it should be out by the end of the month, but I am not sure we will get the notice. Other than that, Im glad the MiFi’s are avalible, but this was one BIG BooBoo!!! Displaying the password could be a huge disaster when you use a bunch of these all configured the same for a business deployment!!!

    • Allen

      08/17/2012 at 7:06 pm

      ITLady: As with any computer/network security, all bets are off if an attacker has physical access. Even without the password, it’s trivial to simply remove the cover and reset the device to factory settings (i.e. reset the password to the factory default). While I agree that the ability to show the password should be user-configurable from the admin interface, it raises the bar only slightly, especially if the stickers with the default password are still present.

      So, if you don’t trust someone, don’t show them the device where they can see the password, and if you don’t trust them not to mess with it when you’re not around, then keep it locked up. Hiding the password does little more than provide a false sense of security. Although as I said, I’m all in favor of making that a user preference, if only because I believe people should have full control over the devices they own.

      • The Garden Master

        10/04/2012 at 6:23 pm

        Or you could not panic and just simply remove the sticker and file it. Wow, that was complicated!

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Android

Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Update Info (2020)

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With the official Android 11 roll out from Google underway, we want to take you through everything you should know right now Samsung’s plans for Galaxy phones and tablets.

In September, Google pushed its next operating system, Android 11, to Pixel users. That’s huge news for the Pixel community and it’s also big news for those who own other Android-powered devices. It means an official release is getting closer for those phones and tablets.

With Android 11 rolling out and Samsung’s Android 10 roll out slowing down, Galaxy smartphone and tablet users are starting to think about the future.

While some Android OEMs started talking about Android 11 months ago, Samsung remained silent. That changed after the launch of the Galaxy Note 20.

Samsung’s confirmed early Android 11 plans. And thanks to that information along with rumors and traditions, we can put together an overview for those of you curious about Android 11.

In this guide we’re going to take you through what you should know about Android 11 if you currently own, or if you’re planning to buy a Galaxy S20, Galaxy Note 20, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy S10, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8, or another Galaxy device.

We’ll take you through what we know about Samsung’s version of Android 11. We’ll take you through what we know about the release date and we’ll outline which devices will get an upgrade to the new version of Android.

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Let’s start with what’s coming out before the official version of Android 11. Samsung is still rolling out Android 10 updates and it’s also pushing monthly updates to its stable of Galaxy phones and tablets.

Samsung Galaxy September Update

Samsung’s September update is pushing out right now.

The update is rolling out to the Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Note 10+, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy A70, Galaxy A50, Galaxy A21s, Galaxy M01s, Galaxy M31, Galaxy Tab S5e, Galaxy Tab Active Pro, and Galaxy Tab S6 and you can expect it to hit more devices in the near future.

The company’s September update includes a ton of patches including 15 fixes that are for issues related to Samsung’s own software.

If you own a Galaxy Tab S6, your upgrade should include software features from the new Galaxy Tab S7. Namely, Wireless DeX and the ability to request Wi-Fi passwords from people on your network if they’re in your contacts list.

If you want to learn more about Samsung’s September security update, head on over to the company’s website.

As a reminder, here’s the current breakdown of Samsung’s current Android security update coverage:

Current Models for Monthly Security Updates

  • Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Z Fold2, Galaxy Z Fold2 5G, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Z Flip 5G
  • Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 5G, Galaxy S10 Lite, Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20 5G, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20+ 5G, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G
  • Galaxy Note8, Galaxy Note9, Galaxy Note10, Galaxy Note10 5G, Galaxy Note10+, Galaxy Note10+ 5G, Galaxy Note10 Lite, Galaxy Note20, Galaxy Note20 5G, Galaxy Note20 Ultra, Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G
  • Enterprise Models: Galaxy A8 (2018), Galaxy A50, Galaxy XCover4s, Galaxy XCover FieldPro, Galaxy XCover Pro

Current Models for Quarterly Security Updates

  • Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+, Galaxy S8 Active
  • Galaxy A2 Core, Galaxy A5 (2017), Galaxy A7 (2018), Galaxy A8s, Galaxy A9 (2018)
  • Galaxy A10, Galaxy A10e, Galaxy A10s, Galaxy A20, Galaxy A20e, Galaxy A20s, Galaxy A30, Galaxy A30s, Galaxy A40, Galaxy A50s, Galaxy A60, Galaxy A70, Galaxy A70s, Galaxy A80, Galaxy A90 5G
  • Galaxy A01, Galaxy A01 Core, Galaxy A11, Galaxy A21, Galaxy A21s, Galaxy A31, Galaxy A41, Galaxy A51, Galaxy A51 5G, Galaxy A71, Galaxy A71 5G
  • Galaxy J4+, Galaxy J4 Core, Galaxy J6+
  • Galaxy M10, Galaxy M10s, Galaxy M20, Galaxy M30, Galaxy M30s, Galaxy M40
  • Galaxy M01, Galaxy M11, Galaxy M21, Galaxy M31, Galaxy M31s, Galaxy M51
  • Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019), Galaxy Tab A 8 (2019), Galaxy Tab A 8 Plus (2019), Galaxy Tab A 8.4 (2020), Galaxy Tab A7, Galaxy Tab Active2, Galaxy Tab Active Pro
  • Galaxy Tab S5e, Galaxy Tab S6, Galaxy Tab S6 5G, Galaxy Tab S6 Lite, Galaxy Tab S7, Galaxy Tab S7+, Galaxy View2
  • W20 5G

Current Models for Other Regular Security Updates

  • Galaxy S8 Lite, Galaxy Note FE
  • Galaxy A3 (2017), Galaxy A6, Galaxy A6+, Galaxy A7 (2017), Galaxy A8+ (2018), Galaxy A8 Star
  • Galaxy J2 Core, Galaxy J3 (2017), Galaxy J3 Pop, Galaxy J3 Top, Galaxy J4, Galaxy J5 (2017), Galaxy J5 Prime, Galaxy J6, Galaxy J7 (2017), Galaxy J7 Duo, Galaxy J7 Prime, Galaxy J7 Prime2, Galaxy J7 Pop, Galaxy J7 Top, Galaxy J7 Max, Galaxy J7 Neo, Galaxy J7+, Galaxy J8
  • Galaxy Tab A (2017), Galaxy Tab A 10.5 (2018), Galaxy Tab S3, Galaxy Tab S4, Galaxy Tab E 8 Refresh

So while devices like the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9 probably won’t get Android 11, they will get security patches and bug fixes for the foreseeable future.

The company’s pushed One UI 2.1, the interface that arrived on board the Galaxy S20 series, to a number of devices including the Galaxy S10, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Tab S6, Galaxy Tab S5e, Galaxy Tab S4, Galaxy A51, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy M01s, and Galaxy M31.

These updates brought a variety of changes including:

  • Quick Share
  • Music Share
  • Single Take
  • AR Zone
  • Pro Video Recording

That said, the One UI 2.1 update for older devices was missing at least one feature that’s present on Galaxy S20 models: Bixby Routines.

The company’s also released another version of One UI, dubbed One UI 2.5, that brings a number of improvements to Galaxy devices. The software debuted on board the Galaxy Note 20.

Samsung is pushing One UI 2.5 to the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Note 10+, Galaxy Note 10 Lite, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 Lite, and Galaxy Tab S6 with more releases on the way.

The company is also planning to bring One UI 2.5 to the Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 9, and Galaxy Fold. It’s unclear when these updates will roll out.

One UI 2.5 is a fairly minor update, but it does bring a few notable changes including the ability for your device to remember the angle you used for your last selfie.

The camera app will also remember the last shooting mode you used (video, etc). There’s also support for full-screen navigation gestures in third-party launchers.

Samsung Galaxy Android 11: What’s New

Samsung’s version of Android 11 will look a lot different than the version Google releases for Pixel devices because it will utilize the company’s new One UI 3.0 user interface.

While we have some information, we don’t have the full picture because Samsung’s version of Android 11 is still in development. That said, it should bring a lot of Google’s features with it.

Google’s version of Android 11 includes features like:

  • Improved Quick Replies.
  • Mute notification sounds & vibrations during video capture recording.
  • Chat Bubbles.
  • Native Screen Recording.
  • Bluetooth improvements for headphones.
  • Memory Input/Output improvements.
  • Biometric Authentication Strength
  • Low Latency support.
  • Variable refresh rates.
  • Resume on Reboot.
  • And a whole lot more.

You can learn more about Android 11 on Google’s website.

As for Samsung’s version of Android 11 with One UI 3.0, we now have a full change log thanks to the company’s beta program.

As expected, the software is loaded up with changes. Here’s the first Galaxy Android 11/One UI 3.0 change log from the beta, courtesy of XDA-Developers:

Home screen

  • Touch and hold an app to add an associated widget.
  • Turn the screen off by double-tapping on an empty are of the Home screen. You can turn this on in Settings > Advanced features > Motion and gestures.

Lock screen

  • Dynamic Lock screen now has more categories,, and you can select more than one.
  • Lock screen widgets are improved.

Quick panel

  • See your conversations and media more conveniently in their own sections when you swipe down from the top of the screen.

AOD

  • Always On Display widgets are improved.

Accessibility

  • Get quick access to the most important accessibility settings during device setup.
  • Get recommended accessibility features based on what you use.
  • Set the Accessibility shortcut more easily in settings.
  • Sound detectors now work with your SmartThings devices such as TVs and lights to give you more visible alerts when the doorbell rings or a baby is crying.

Samsung Keyboard

  • You can find the keyboard in settings more easily under General management in Settings, and the settings have been reorganized to put the most important ones first.

Samsung DeX

  • You can now connect to supported TVs wirelessly.
  • New touchpad multi-gestures let you change screen zoom and font size more easily.

Internet

  • Added ability to block websites from redirecting you when you tap the Back button.
  • Added warnings and blocking options for websites that shot too many pop-ups or notifications.
  • Rearranged menus to make things easier to find.
  • Added several new add-ons, including one that translates websites.
  • Added option hide the status bar for a more immersive browsing experience.
  • Increased maximum number of open tabs to 99.
  • Added ability to lock and reorder tabs.
  • Improved design for tab bar which is now supported on all devices.
  • Ended support for Samsung Internet edge panel.

Contacts & Phone

  • Added the ability to edit multiple linked contacts at one time.
  • Added an option to help you quickly delete duplicate contacts.
  • Enhanced the search experience.
  • Extended the storage period of the Trash bin from 15 to 30 days.

Phone/Call background

  • Added the ability to customize the call screen with your own pictures and videos.

Messages

  • Created a Trash bin to store recently deleted messages.

Call & Text on other devices

  • Added the ability to turn Call & text on other devices on or off with Bixby Routines.

Calendar

  • Events with the same start time are now shown together in month and agenda view.
  • Reorganized options for adding and editing events.
  • Improved layout for full screen alerts.

Reminder

  • Improved layout for full screen alerts

Digital wellbeing and Parental controls

  • Added trends to your weekly report. You can see how your usage has changed since the previous week and check your usage time for each feature.
  • Added phone usage time while driving to the weekly report.
  • Added a lock screen widget so you can check your screen time without unlocking your phone.
  • Added separate profiles for personal and work modes so you can track your screen time separately.

Camera

  • Improved auto-focus and auto exposure functionality and usability.
  • Improved stabilization when taking pictures of the moon at high zoom levels.

Photo editor

  • Added the ability to revert edited pictures back to their original versions.

Bixby Routine

  • Grouped preset routines help you get started quickly and learn how to build your own routines easily.
  • You can now see what actions are reversed when a routine ends.
  • New conditions have been added, such as a specific start time, the disconnection of a Bluetooth device or Wi-Fi network, a call from a specific number, and more.
  • New actions have been added, including talking to Bixby and accessibility actions.
  • You can add a customized icon for each routine and add routines to the Lock screen for quick access.

The software is a work in progress and there’s always a chance Samsung adds, or subtracts, features from this list as the beta progresses.

For instance, Google’s smart home controls are reportedly missing from the pre-beta software, but we could see them added into the final version of the software. Time will tell.

Samsung’s also working on the software that will power the upcoming Galaxy S21 series. The firmware was, as expected, is based on Android 11.

We don’t know what the software will look like, but the devices will almost certainly be powered by a new version of One UI, probably dubbed One UI 3.1.

These Galaxy Devices Will Get Android 11

Samsung typically keeps devices updated with major Android software updates for two years. Fortunately, it looks like the company will change this policy for Android 11.

The company says it’s committed to providing three years of major software upgrades going forward. This is obviously a huge development.

Initially it looked like this might only apply to higher profile devices, but according to Samsung, lengthier support will also be extended to other devices.

Here’s the full list:

  • Galaxy S series: Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S20+ 5G, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 5G, Galaxy S20 in addition to Galaxy S10 5G, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 Lite and upcoming S series devices.
  • Galaxy Note series: Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G, Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, Galaxy Note 20 5G, Galaxy Note 20, Galaxy Note 10+ 5G, Galaxy Note 10+, Galaxy Note 10 5G, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Note 10 Lite and upcoming Note series devices.
  • Galaxy Foldable devices: Galaxy Z Fold 2 5G, Galaxy Z Fold 2, Galaxy Z Flip 5G, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Fold 5G, Galaxy Fold and upcoming Z series devices
  • Galaxy A series: Galaxy A71 5G, Galaxy A71, Galaxy A51 5G, Galaxy A51, Galaxy A90 5G and select upcoming A series devices.
  • Tablets: Galaxy Tab S7+ 5G, Galaxy Tab S7+, Galaxy Tab S7 5G, Galaxy Tab S7, Galaxy Tab S6 5G, Galaxy Tab S6, Galaxy Tab S6 Lite and upcoming Tab S series devices.

As for Android 11, Popular phones like the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S10Galaxy S10+Galaxy S10e, Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Note 10 are shoo-ins. The Galaxy Note 20 will make the move to Android 11 as well.

As for the company’s tablets, the Galaxy Tab S6 and Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019) will get upgraded to Android 11. You can also expect the new Galaxy Tab S7 to get upgraded as well.

Mid-range phones and tablets from 2019 should also move from Android 10 to Android 11.

Here is a preliminary list of device we think will get upgraded to Android 11 in 2020 and 2021:

  • Galaxy S20
  • Galaxy S20+
  • Galaxy S20 Ultra
  • Galaxy Note 20
  • Galaxy S10
  • Galaxy S10 5G
  • Galaxy S10+
  • Galaxy S10e
  • Galaxy S10 Lite
  • Galaxy Note 10
  • Galaxy Note 10 Lite
  • Galaxy Fold
  • Galaxy Z Flip
  • Galaxy Z Fold 2
  • Galaxy A10
  • Galaxy A10e
  • Galaxy A10s
  • Galaxy A11
  • Galaxy A20
  • Galaxy A20e
  • Galaxy A20s
  • Galaxy A21
  • Galaxy A21s
  • Galaxy A30
  • Galaxy A30s
  • Galaxy A31
  • Galaxy A40
  • Galaxy A41
  • Galaxy A50
  • Galaxy A50s
  • Galaxy A51
  • Galaxy A60
  • Galaxy A70
  • Galaxy A70s
  • Galaxy A71
  • Galaxy A80
  • Galaxy A8s
  • Galaxy M01
  • Galaxy M11
  • Galaxy M21
  • Galaxy M30s
  • Galaxy M31
  • Galaxy M40
  • Galaxy Tab S7
  • Galaxy Tab S6
  • Galaxy Tab S6 Lite
  • Galaxy Tab S5e
  • Galaxy Tab Active Pro
  • Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019)
  • Galaxy Tab A 8 (2019)
  • Galaxy Tab A 8 Plus (2019)
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  • Stunning 13.3-inch Retina display with True Tone technology
  • Backlit Magic Keyboard and Touch ID
  • Tenth-generation Intel Core i3 processor
  • Intel Iris Plus Graphics
  • Fast SSD storage

These Galaxy Devices Might Not Get Android 11

Any Galaxy device that’s not on that list is currently on the fence when it comes to Android 11. That means popular devices like the Galaxy Note 9 and Galaxy S9 series are very much in danger of getting left behind on Android 10.

Here are a few Samsung Galaxy devices that could stick around on Android 10:

  • Galaxy S9
  • Galaxy S9+
  • Galaxy Note 9
  • Galaxy A9 (2018)
  • Galaxy A8 (2018)
  • Galaxy A8+ (2018)
  • Galaxy A7 (2018)
  • Galaxy A6 (2018)
  • Galaxy A6+ (2018)
  • Galaxy Tab A 10.5 (2018)

Older models like Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8 probably won’t get upgraded to Android 11 either. Neither device has been upgraded to Android 10.

Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Beta

Google’s Android 11 beta included the Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 3a, Pixel 3a XL, Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL, and the Pixel 4a.

Other companies that took part in the Android 11 beta included OnePlus (OnePlus 8 series), Xiomi (Mi 10, Mi 10 Pro, and the POCO F2 Pro), and OPPO (Find X2 and Find X2 Pro).

As for Samsung, it will host its own Android 11 beta for Galaxy devices.

The company has launched its Android 11 beta program. The program has started in the pre-release phase which requires users to register to become a Samsung developer partner. You can do that over on its website.

Samsung’s Android 11 pre-beta is limited to Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, and Galaxy S20 Ultra models in South Korea and the United States, but the company will open the beta up to users in China, Germany, India, Poland, and the United Kingdom once the pre-beta process ends.

As for the start of the public Android 11 beta, it looks like it could happen soon. An update for the company’s Samsung’s Galaxy Wearable app includes support for Android 11.

Samsung used to keep its Android betas exclusive to its Galaxy S flagship models. In 2016, the Android Nougat beta was exclusive to Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge users. In 2017, Samsung limited the Android Oreo beta to the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+.

It took a different approach with Android Pie. Instead of keeping it limited to Galaxy S flagships, Samsung expanded the Android Pie/One UI beta to former flagships and mid-range devices. The Android 10 beta reverted back to the old days with a far more limited release.

While we don’t know how the Android 11 beta will work exactly, you can expect the Galaxy Note 20 to take part at some point. We also expect to see a release for Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10 models down the road.

For more on the Samsung Galaxy Android 11 beta program, take a look at our guide.

Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Release Date

So when will Samsung release its first Android 11 update? Let’s start with what we know.

Now that the Galaxy Android 11 beta program is live, we know that the company is hard at work on updates for the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, and Galaxy S20 Ultra.

The Galaxy S20+ Android 11 update recently appeared in a benchmark on HTML5test which is a sign that testing is underway behind the scenes. The device being tested was running the company’s unreleased Samsung Internet 13.0.

The company is reportedly testing Android 11 on the Galaxy S10+. Earlier this year the device showed up in a Geekbench benchmark.

Last year, Samsung pushed its first public Android 10 beta in October, or, several weeks after Google pushed the official version of Android 10 to Pixel devices. With the official version of Android 11 out for Pixel devices, the public beta is getting close.

Samsung says the Galaxy S20 series will be the first to Android 11 and we expect the Galaxy Note 20 series to follow closely behind. These devices will followed by older models like the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10.

And while a lot of Galaxy models will probably get Android 11 in the second half 2020, many others will have to wait until 2021. Samsung’s Android roll outs typically span across several months.

We’ll continue to update this post with new information as the year goes on so make sure to check back in with us.

5 Reasons to Wait for the Galaxy S21 & 5 Reasons Not To

Wait for Even Better Performance

Wait for Even Better Performance

You can expect the Galaxy S21 series to build on the foundation left by the Galaxy S20 series and the Galaxy Note 20 series

A sketchy report out of China claims Samsung will utilize the Snapdragon 865 inside the Galaxy S21 to keep the price down. 

That said, there's also a chance the Galaxy S21 makes the jump to Qualcomm's rumored Snapdragon 875 processor. If true, that should lead to notable improvements in overall speed, multitasking, and battery life. 

91Mobiles has released potential information about Qualcomm's new processor. It will supposedly include a new X60 5G modem and an Adreno 660 graphics processor.

Unfortunately, the report doesn't shed any light on how much it'll improve upon the Snapdragon 865. We probably won't get those details until much later this year.

Another processor rumor hints at a new Exynos 1000 processor for the upcoming Galaxy S21 Ultra and an Exynos 991 or or Exynos 992 for the cheapest Galaxy S21 model.

The Exynos 1000 is reportedly codenamed "Olympus" and the "Exynos 1000" moniker is currently a tenative name. 

Leaker Ice Universe says the Exynos 1000 will still "lose" to the Snapdragon 875, he says power consumption should be improved. 

The company is also reportedly thinking about ditching the Exynos name for its in-house processors.  

The Galaxy S20's 120Hz screens are extremely smooth, but they can drain battery life and the hope is that Samsung's improvements to next year's models will help tone that down. The Galaxy S20 represents Samsung's first stab at the technology. 

The Galaxy S20's 5G connectivity can also have a heavy impact on battery life and bringing a new modem aboard the Galaxy S21 could help counteract that.

As for the size of the Galaxy S21's battery, Samsung-centric blog Galaxy Club has spotted information about its size. 

The information points to a 4,660mAh capacity battery. The Galaxy S20's battery is rated at 4,370mAh so this would represent a small bump. 

The same site has also leaked the Galaxy S20 Ultra's battery capacity. According to Galaxy Club, the Galaxy S21 Ultra battery is rated at 4,885 mAh which means it could be marketed as 5,000 mAh.

So if you want a high-end Galaxy phone, but think you might want a little more polish, consider hanging around for next year's flagships. 

Last update on 2020-09-20. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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Apple

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

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Apple’s iOS 14 update could have a huge impact on your iPhone’s performance. While some of you should install the new operating system right now, others are better off waiting a few hours or perhaps even a few more days before moving up from iOS 13.

iOS 14 is out of beta and available to download. The new operating system is compatible with the iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone SE, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, and the iPhone SE 2. It’ll also be on board Apple’s new iPhone 12 series.

The first version of iOS 14 is chock full of changes including improved Widgets, an assortment of changes to first-party apps, performance upgrades, and more.

The iOS 14 update requires a sizable download. It’s 2GB+ for iPhone owners moving their device up from iOS 13.7. It might be even bigger for those of you moving up from older versions of iOS 13. That’s because the features and fixes from the updates you skipped are baked into your version of iOS 14.

Those of you dealing with issues on iOS 13 could see a huge turnaround after installing iOS 14. We’re already hearing about positive changes. That being said, we’re also hearing about various bugs and performance problems.

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If you do run into an issue, you can try downgrading to iOS 13 though you can only downgrade back to iOS 13.7. Apple’s closed off the downgrade path back to older versions of iOS 13.

This means that those of you having a great experience on older versions of iOS 13 need to approach the iOS 14 upgrade with caution. Once you make the move there’s no going back.

If you’re really desperate, you could try moving your iPhone to Apple’s iOS 14.2 update which is currently in beta ahead of an unknown release date.

If you’re currently debating a move to iOS 14, allow us to walk you through the best reasons to install the software today and the best reasons to hang around on iOS 13 for a little bit longer.

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, think about installing the iOS 14 update right away.

iOS 14 brings 11 new security patches to your iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.

If you skipped iOS 13.7 or any older versions of iOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your iOS 14 update. 

In addition to those patches, iOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

Last update on 2020-09-20. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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Apple

Apple Watch 6 vs Apple Watch SE: The Biggest Differences

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Here are the biggest differences between the Apple Watch 6 and Apple Watch SE.

This is how the Apple Watch 6 vs Apple Watch SE comparison shakes out in the most important areas. Apple announced two new Apple Watch models today, and if you are looking to buy a new Apple Watch in 2020, these are at the top of your list. Here are the biggest differences between the Apple Watch Series 6 and the Apple Watch SE.

  • Price: Apple Watch 6 $399 and up – Apple Watch SE $279 and up
  • Display: Same Sizes, Apple Watch 6 Features Always On
  • Sensors: Fall Detection and Altimeter on Both, Apple Watch 6 ECG and spO2
  • Colors: Apple Watch Series 6 Gains Four New Colors
  • Performance: Series 6 Features Faster Processor

The Apple Watch Series 6 is the latest and greatest model with all the fancy new features. This is the model that you should buy if you have enough cash, plan to keep your watch for a long time and you want or need the latest sensors.

The Apple Watch SE is an entry-level model that is newer than the Series 3, with a nice display, the important health, and safety features, and with a faster processor than the Series 3.

Ultimately these are the biggest differences and the ones that you will notice the most are the price, the always-on display, and the performance. Obviously color is a factor, but only if you are concerned about how the Apple Watch looks. You can get the same bands across all of the models.

We expect that the performance is going to be a major factor for power users, and the sp02 sensor will be a big factor for users that workout a lot and that want to monitor this for overall health.

Apple Watch 6 Features

Apple packs in a ton of new features to the new Apple Watch Series 6.

The big new features on the Apple Watch 6 are the spO2 blood oxygen sensor, a brighter display, 5GHz WiFi, the U1 ultrawideband chip, S6 processor and it keeps the ECG sensor from the Apple Watch 5.

Apple Watch SE Features

Buy the Apple Watch SE for new features and better performance.

The Apple Watch SE is twice as fast as the Apple Watch 3, it includes a display in the same size options as the Apple Watch Series 6, but without the Always On option and it does deliver fall detection. It is swimproof, available with a cellular connection, and offers many of the same overall features.

63 Exciting Things You Can Do With the Apple Watch

Answer Calls on the Apple Watch

Answer Calls on the Apple Watch

You can answer a call on your Apple Watch using it as a small Bluetooth speakerphone. You only want to use this for shorter calls because the audio quality isn't as good as when you are talking on speakerphone on your iPhone. 

The Apple Watch only allows you to answer your calls on Speakerphone, so you won't want to use this all the time. It is very handy when you are working on a project or busy with your hands. Definitely be conscious of where you are taking calls. If you wouldn't talk on speakerphone, you shouldn't talk on your Apple Watch.

If you buy the new Apple Watch with LTE, you can even make calls on the Apple Watch without your iPhone nearby. This requires adding the watch to your plan for $10 a month. You cannot answer a FaceTime video call on the Apple Watch. 

Last update on 2020-09-20. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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5 Reasons to Buy the Apple Watch SE & 4 Reasons Not To

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Is the cheaper Apple Watch worth buying? Apple just announced the Apple Watch SE alongside the Apple Watch 6 and it offers a lot of the essential Apple Watch features at a cheaper price. if you are considering buying a new Apple Watch in 2020, you may want to go with the cheaper model instead of going big for features that you might not use.

The Apple Watch SE is a new 2020 model, that uses the same 40mm and 44mm screen sizes as the Series 6, but it does not include an always-on display. You don’t get all the new Apple Watch 6 features, like the spO2 monitor, but it is a perfect option for some users.

This is a great option for users to look at instead of the Apple Watch 3, especially this late in 2020. The newer model will get updates longer and it packs in some very important features that you won’t find on the older model. Apple positions this model to take on the Fitbit and other Apple Watch alternatives.

Should You Buy the Apple Watch SE today or wait?

The Apple Watch SE starts at $279 and you can get it at Apple today and soon at Amazon, Best Buy, B&H Photo, Walmart, Target, and other retailers. You can choose an LTE model and buy from Verizon, AT&T, or T-Mobile. Apple allows you to finance at Apple for $12 a month on the Apple Card.

Here are the reasons that you should buy the Apple Watch SE today;

  1. Buy for a Bigger Screen
  2. Buy for New Health Features
  3. Buy for Fall Detection
  4. Buy for a Cheap New Apple Watch
  5. Buy if You Keep Your Apple Watch for a Long Time

There are also some good reasons not to buy the Apple Watch SE right now;

  1. Don’t Buy if You Need the Latest and Greatest
  2. Don’t Buy if You Love Your Current Watch
  3. Wait for Reviews
  4. Wait for Deals

Read on in the sections below to learn more about each of these reasons and then you can decide if this is the best Apple Watch for you to buy this year.

New Apple Watch SE (GPS, 40mm) - Gold Aluminum Case with Pink Sand Sport Band
  • GPS model lets you take calls and reply to texts from your wrist
  • Large Retina OLED display
  • Up to 2x faster processor than Series 3
  • Track your daily activity on Apple Watch and see your trends in the Fitness app on iPhone
  • Measure workouts like running, walking, cycling, yoga, swimming, and dance

Buy for a Bigger Screen

The Apple Watch SE offers a bigger screen than the Apple Watch Series 3. The two new models are 40mm and 44mm, which means you get access to newer Apple Watch faces and can see a little bit more on the screen. These aren’t massive display size upgrades, but after using the 44mm Apple Watch for two years, it is nice.

There is no always-on display option, so if you are looking for that feature you need to go with the Series 5 or Series 6.

Buy for New Health Features

The Apple Watch SE includes ECG support. These are two very handy features if you are concerned about your health. They are not found on the Apple Watch Series 3.

The ECG feature allows you to perform an on-demand ECG to check heart health. This can detect afib, and record your heart activity if you are feeling off, and then allow you to share it with a doctor.

Buy the Apple Watch SE for new features and better performance.

Buy for Fall Detection

Apple now includes Fall Detection in the cheaper Apple Watch. This is excellent if you live alone, are elderly, or often do work at heights.

Fall Detection uses sensors to know if you fall and then asks if you are OK. If you don’t respond in a timely fashion Apple can call emergency contacts or can call 911 or your local equivalent for you.

Buy for a Cheap New Apple Watch

If you are looking for a cheap Apple Watch, the Apple Watch SE is now the best option. You get a new model that is more affordable and that you can still get with LTE connectivity if you want it.

Instead of buying an older model or a used model, you are getting a new model with a warranty and you can add AppleCare+ on if you want to protect it from accidental damage.

Buy if You Keep Your Apple Watch for a Long Time

Are you going to keep your new Apple Watch for years? if so, this is a better option than the Series 3 or an older model. Why? Well in addition to the reasons mentioned above, you are going to get longer support for the Apple Watch SE in the form of updates and new features.

Apple offers a lot of support for Apple Watch models, but buying the new one will help you keep it longer and get more value long term.

Don’t Buy if You Need the Apple Watch 6

Don’t buy the Apple Watch SE if the Apple Watch 6 is a better fit for you.

Do you want an always-on display, a spO2 reader, and other new features? If so, you should skip this model and go straight for the Apple Watch Series 6. This allows you to get the latest and greatest.

This plays into the reason above as well. If you aren’t upgrading every year, it can make more sense to spend a little more to get the latest features so that you can enjoy them longer.

Don’t Buy if You Love Your Current Watch

Is your current Apple Watch good enough for you? You might be lusting over a new gadget that you don’t even need. If you think about how you use it and if you would actually use the new features, you might be surprised.

If your Apple Watch is good enough, especially with watchOS 7 then you may not need to upgrade. If battery life is an issue, you can replace your Apple Watch battery pretty affordably, and this gives your model a new life. Upgrade the style with a new Apple Watch band and you’ve saved money and made a more sustainable choice.

Wait for Reviews

The biggest reason to wait is to see what the reviews say about the Apple Watch SE. These will let you know if the changes are worth it and how it stacks up to the latest model and older models in performance.

We should see Apple Watch SE reviews in the next week or so, which will let you make a more informed buying decision. While it may be hard to find an Apple Watch SE in stock this holiday season it is still a good idea for many buyers to wait.

Wait for Deals

This model is cheaper, which is great, but if you can save more money that is even better. We could see some Apple Watch SE deals start in early 2021, and there is a small chance that we see some deals during Black Friday, but that may be a stretch this year.

With in-store deals not looking the same, retailers have less reason to discount new products like this on Black Friday, which leads us to look out to Valentine’s Day and Mothers Day in 2021 as the big Apple Watch SE deal days. Decide if you want to wait that long for a deal.

We could see some deals at carriers when you combine with a new phone or use a payment plan.

63 Exciting Things You Can Do With the Apple Watch

Answer Calls on the Apple Watch

Answer Calls on the Apple Watch

You can answer a call on your Apple Watch using it as a small Bluetooth speakerphone. You only want to use this for shorter calls because the audio quality isn't as good as when you are talking on speakerphone on your iPhone. 

The Apple Watch only allows you to answer your calls on Speakerphone, so you won't want to use this all the time. It is very handy when you are working on a project or busy with your hands. Definitely be conscious of where you are taking calls. If you wouldn't talk on speakerphone, you shouldn't talk on your Apple Watch.

If you buy the new Apple Watch with LTE, you can even make calls on the Apple Watch without your iPhone nearby. This requires adding the watch to your plan for $10 a month. You cannot answer a FaceTime video call on the Apple Watch. 

Last update on 2020-09-20. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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5 Reasons to Buy the Apple Watch 6 & 4 Reasons to Wait

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The Apple Watch Series 6 offers a lot. Here is a look at the reasons you should and shouldn’t buy.

The Apple Watch 6 offers new health features, a faster processor and promises better battery life. It’s on sale today starting at $399 and you can get it with an LTE connection if you want to do more without your iPhone. This list will help you decide if you should buy the Apple Watch 6 today, or if you should wait a little bit.

You can buy the Apple Watch 6 at Apple, Amazon, Best Buy, B&H Photo, Walmart, and Target this week. The LTE model is coming soon to Verizon, AT&T, or T-Mobile as well as other carriers soon.

The Apple Watch Series 6 comes in 40mm and 44mm sizes and you can get it in aluminum or stainless steel with a wide range of band options. Apple lets you choose the band you want, but you can also buy any band you want later to add style to your watch.

The newest model includes some carryover features from the Series 5 model including the Always On Display, compass, fall detection, and ECG support with Afib detection. If you are upgrading from an older model you need to factor those into your decision.

Here is a close look at the important reasons that you should consider buying the Apple Watch 6, and a few reasons to wait.

Reasons to Buy the Apple Watch 6;

  1. Buy for New Health Features
  2. Buy for Faster Processor
  3. Buy if You Own a Series 1 or Older
  4. Buy if You want the new Apple Watch Color
  5. Buy for a Better Display

Don’t Buy the Apple Watch 6 if;

  1. Don’t Buy if the Cheaper Model is Better for You
  2. You’re Happy With Your Current Model
  3. Wait for Reviews
  4. Wait for Deals

Read on for more details about each of these reasons so that you can make the best decision for your situation.

Buy for New Health Features

Buy the Apple Watch 6 for new health tracking features.

The new Apple Watch 6 includes a Blood Oxygen Sensor, sometimes referred to as a spO2 sensor. This detects the oxygen saturation in your blood, which is important to know if you have asthma, COPD, points to heart health items and it can also be very important to track during physical activity.

This can also prove helpful if you are concerned about COVID 19, as a low spO2 reading can point to the need for medical attention. In short, this sensor can help you stay alert to changes in your blood oxygen levels and let you know if you should seek medical help.

Instead of using a third-party option or a standalone sensor, this is built-in to the Apple Watch 6, and you also have a digital recording of your spO2 readings over time to share with a medical professional.

Buy for Faster Processor

Apple packs in a faster processor in the Apple Watch 6 this year. The Apple Watch 4 and Apple Watch 5 used the same processor, though Appel improved performance in the Series 5.

This year, the Apple Watch 6 uses a new processor that delivers better performance. This means better overall speed when using apps and general tasks. Specifically, Apple says that the new processor is 20% faster than the older model.

Apple packs in a ton of new features to the new Apple Watch Series 6.

Buy if You Own a Series 1 or Older

Are you using an Apple Watch Series 1 or older? If so, you won’t get watchOS 7 on your watch. This means no new features and security fixes this year. If you want to enjoy new features, you will need to upgrade to a new Apple Watch.

For users that keep their Apple Watch for years, it is a good idea to go to the Series 6, instead of to the new cheaper Apple Watch announced alongside it. Going to the top end will allow you to use your Apple Watch longer and ultimately provide more value for the next several years.

Buy if You want the new Apple Watch color

https://twitter.com/DetroitBORG/status/1305917357630672897

Apple finally adds a new Apple Watch color to the table this year. If you want to rock the new color, because you like the look or because you want people to know that you have a new model, then you need to get the Apple Watch Series 6.

Apple includes a beautiful new Blue and a bright red for aluminum colors. There are also two new Stainless colors including Dark Gray Stainless and a new Gold Stainless.

Buy for a Better Display

The new Always On Display is 2.5x brighter so that you can see it better outdoors without turning the watch on. This is a nice upgrade from the earlier models and a handy way to stay on top of the time without lifting your watch and looking.

I enjoy that this feature allows me to see what the time is at a glance, even while in a conversation, just like a normal watch.

Don’t Buy if the Cheaper Model is Better for You

Consider the Apple Watch SE instead of the Apple Watch 6.

Apple announced two new Apple Watch models this year. This is a major change, and it means that you can buy a new Apple Watch for less money and still get cool new features and a model that will last for years.

The Apple Watch SE is a cheaper model that starts at $279 and is available in the same sizes. You can use all the same accessories and Apple Watch bands with it. The cheaper model does not include a spO2 sensor, but you do get some handy features like Fall Detection, ECG support, and many of our other favorite Apple Watch features.

This is a really tempting option and something that you should research before you buy.

You’re Happy With Your Current Model

Are you happy with your current Apple Watch? As long as you have the Apple Watch Series 2 or higher you will get a free watchOS 7 upgrade with tons of new features.

If you need to give your current model a boost, you can buy a new battery for many models from iFixit and install the upgrade yourself. You can buy a new Apple Watch band and then you have a totally fresh look.

Keep your current setup going longer will save you some cash and it’s more sustainable than upgrading every year.

Wait for Reviews

The biggest reason to wait for the new Apple Watch 6 is to learn how well the new features work and to see how the changes hold up to the real world. We should see Apple Watch Series 6 reviews go online in the next few days or next week.

While you can order right now if you want to get it on release day, savvy buyers will hold off to read reviews and watch videos about the new models. This is especially important without the same hands-on coverage at an Apple Event.

Wait for Deals

If you are looking for a deal on the Apple Watch 6, you will want to wait, but keep in mind that you will likely be waiting until next year for a deal on the WiFi model. We could see some discounts near Black Friday, but with major changes to that shopping day, there is no guarantee.

Carriers may offer a discount on the Apple Watch 6 with LTE soon after release, or when the new iPhone arrives, but ultimately you will be waiting months for big standalone deals.

63 Exciting Things You Can Do With the Apple Watch

Answer Calls on the Apple Watch

Answer Calls on the Apple Watch

You can answer a call on your Apple Watch using it as a small Bluetooth speakerphone. You only want to use this for shorter calls because the audio quality isn't as good as when you are talking on speakerphone on your iPhone. 

The Apple Watch only allows you to answer your calls on Speakerphone, so you won't want to use this all the time. It is very handy when you are working on a project or busy with your hands. Definitely be conscious of where you are taking calls. If you wouldn't talk on speakerphone, you shouldn't talk on your Apple Watch.

If you buy the new Apple Watch with LTE, you can even make calls on the Apple Watch without your iPhone nearby. This requires adding the watch to your plan for $10 a month. You cannot answer a FaceTime video call on the Apple Watch. 

Last update on 2020-09-20. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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