Apple Watch Ultra 2 Review: Bigger, brighter—but is it better?

Apple’s latest offering, the Apple Watch Ultra 2, isn’t your average smartwatch. This feature-packed device transcends everyday fitness tracking, targeting serious athletes, outdoor adventurers, and anyone seeking a robust health and wellness companion. 

With its cutting-edge technology, the Ultra 2 caters to those pushing their physical boundaries and demanding the most from their wearable tech.

Built upon Apple’s reputation for innovation and user-friendliness, the Ultra 2 boasts unique features like a shatter-resistant display, industry-leading battery life, and advanced health monitoring capabilities. 

Let’s investigate further and explore if this powerhouse lives up to its adventurous spirit.

About Watch Ultra 2

Technical specifications

  • Processor: Apple S9 SiP 64-bit dual-core processor 
  • Memory: 64GB storage (not expandable)
  • Software: watchOS 10 (compatible with iPhone 8 and later models with iOS 16 or later)
  • Display: 1.92-inch LTPO OLED display with 502 x 410 pixels and scratch-resistant sapphire crystal
  • Connectivity: Cellular with LTE and UMTS, Wi-Fi 4 (802.11n), Bluetooth 5.3, Ultra Wideband chip
  • Sensors: Advanced health sensors include electrical heart sensor (ECG app), third-generation optical heart sensor, temperature sensor, high-g accelerometer, high dynamic range gyroscope, compass, altimeter, and water temperature sensor.
  • Battery life: 36 hours with normal use, 72 hours with normal use and low-power enabled
  • Charging time: Fast charging (0–80% and 0–100%) using Apple Watch Magnetic Fast Charging USB-C Cable

How to use

Setting up the Ultra 2 is a breeze. Simply download the Watch app on your compatible iPhone and follow the on-screen instructions. 

The app guides you through pairing the watch, personalizing settings, and downloading your preferred fitness apps. The Ultra 2’s intuitive interface allows for easy navigation with its touchscreen, Digital Crown, and side button. 

To optimize performance, enable features you’ll use regularly (like GPS) and disable those you don’t (like always-on display) to conserve battery life. 

The Watch app also offers tutorials and customization options to tailor the Ultra 2 to your specific needs.

how to use apple watch ultra 2

How does Apple Watch Ultra 2 compare with its closest competitors?

The Apple Watch Ultra 2 faces stiff competition from the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro and Garmin Fenix 7. While all three cater to serious athletes, they excel in different areas. 

Galaxy Watch 5 Pro

Similarities

Built-in GPS, multiple workout modes, advanced health tracking features.

Differences

Less durable design, shorter battery life, closed ecosystem compared to Wear OS.

Fenix 7

Similarities

Rugged design, built-in GPS, advanced training features.

Differences

Less user-friendly interface, limited app selection, focus on outdoor navigation compared to broader health tracking of Apple Watch Ultra 2.

Ultimately, the choice depends on your priorities: cutting-edge tech and user experience (Apple), unparalleled battery life and training metrics (Garmin), or app variety and a more open platform (Samsung).

FeaturesUltra 2Galaxy Watch 5 ProFenix 7
Display1.92-inch LTPO OLED, 502×410 pixels, Sapphire Crystal1.4-inch Super AMOLED, 450×450 pixels, Sapphire Crystal1.3-inch, 260×260 pixels, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP), solar screen, Corning Gorilla Glass
Battery lifeUp to 3 daysUp to 3 daysUp to 14 days with solar (smartwatch mode), up to 46 hours with solar (GPS mode)
Operating systemwatchOS 10 (requires iPhone 8 or later with iOS 16+)Wear OS 4.0 and OneUI 5.0 (compatible with Android smartphones)GarminOS
Health monitoringECG app, blood oxygen, heart rate, temperature, sleep trackingBlood oxygen, body composition, heart rate, sleep trackingAdvanced sleep tracking, pulse oximeter, body battery energy monitoring, respiration tracking
Training featuresBuilt-in GPS, multiple workout modes (running, cycling, swimming), Doule Tap Gesture for quick actionsBuilt-in GPS, trackback feature, running coachBuild-in GPS, Advanced Training Metrics (VO2 Max, recovery time, PacePro pacing strategies), topographical maps, multisport tracking 
DurabilityRugged titanium case with water resistance up to 100 m, Sapphire crystal displayDurable titanium case with water resistanceRugged design, water-resistant up to 10 ATM, military-grade durability standards
App selectionLimited to Apple App StoreWider app selection through Google Play StoreLimited selection of Garmin Connect IQ apps
Standout feature Seamlss integration with Apple Health ecosystem, innovative Double Tap gestureWider app compatibility through Wear OS, touch-sensitive bezelUnmatched battery life, advanced training metrics

Need a smartwatch that keeps up with your adventurous spirit? The Apple Watch Ultra 2 is built for the extreme. Elevate your outdoor adventures and fitness routines today!

user reviews and experiences

User reviews and experiences

User feedback on the Ultra 2 is generally positive, highlighting both its strengths and weaknesses.

Loves:

  • Bright and bold: Users consistently rave about the Ultra 2’s stunning display, with many appreciating the increased brightness and clarity compared to previous models.
  • Built to last: The rugged titanium design receives high marks for durability, with users feeling confident wearing the watch during intense workouts and outdoor adventures.
  • Fitness focused: Athletes appreciate the improved battery life, allowing them to track workouts for extended periods without needing to recharge. The new Double Tap gesture is a welcome addition for its convenience during exercise routines.
  • Health hub: Users invested in the Apple ecosystem love the seamless integration with Apple Health, providing a comprehensive view of their health data all in one place.

Less than perfect:

  • Bulk on the wrist: Some users, particularly those with smaller wrists, find the Ultra 2’s size and weight to be bulky and uncomfortable for everyday wear.
  • Battery blues: While improved, the battery life with cellular connectivity enabled can drain faster than expected for some users, requiring more frequent charging.
  • Pricey punch: The premium price tag is a sticking point for some, with users questioning if the additional features justify the cost compared to the standard Apple Watch models.

Our verdict

The Apple Watch Ultra 2 is a compelling choice for serious athletes and outdoor enthusiasts seeking a feature-rich health and fitness companion.

But is it worth the investment? 

Let’s break down its strengths and weaknesses to help you decide if it’s the right fit.

Go LongGo Short
Bright, high-resolution display offers excellent clarity for viewing workout data and maps, even in challenging lighting conditions.Premium price tag may discourage some buyers, as its features overlap with standard Apple Watch models.
Titanium build ensures durability for withstanding the elements and intense workouts.Larger size and weight might not be ideal for users with smaller wrists or those who prefer a more discreet watch.
Built-in GPS, multiple workout modes, and the innovative Double Tap gesture elevate your exercise experience.Short battery life. Heavy cellular usage may result in shorter battery life compared to competitors.
Integrates flawlessly with Apple Health for a holistic view of your well-being.
Comprehensive suite of health tracking features, including ECG, blood oxygen monitoring, and sleep tracking.
Variety bands available, including the comfortable new Trail Loop, caters to different activities and preferences.

The Ultra 2’s value depends on your needs. If you’re a serious athlete who prioritizes top-notch performance tracking, durability, and seamless integration with Apple Health, the Ultra 2 justifies its price tag. 

However, for casual exercisers or those with smaller wrists, a more affordable Apple Watch model might be sufficient or a competitor like the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro might be a better fit.

Longevity.Technology scored Apple Watch Ultra 2 at 23/25
Effectiveness
Does the product do what it claims to do, and does it do it well?
Value for money
How does it stack-up with competitors or similar products or services?
Proven claims/science
How well has the company conducted or used scientific research and studies to validate its product/service?
Longevity specific
How applicable is it to the longevity marketplace and the daily life of a longevity enthusiast?
Ease of use
How straightforward is it for users to use the product without facing any difficulty?

Final thoughts

The Apple Watch Ultra 2 is a feature-packed smartwatch pushing the boundaries of fitness tracking. Its stunning display, rugged design, and advanced health features make it a compelling choice for serious athletes and outdoor adventurers. 

However, its hefty price tag and bulky design require careful consideration. If you prioritize affordability, everyday comfort, or a wider app selection, alternative smartwatches may be more suitable.

If you’re constantly pushing your limits and require a feature-rich companion to track your progress and keep you connected, the Ultra 2 is a worthy investment. 

Ultimately, the decision comes down to your needs and budget. 

Still deciding if the Apple Watch Ultra 2 is for you? The choice is clear if you demand unparalleled durability, cutting-edge health features, and an ecosystem that supports your most ambitious goals. Take the leap and transform your fitness journey with the Ultra 2.

Photograph: Apple
The information included in this article is for informational purposes only. The purpose of this webpage is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.