The Apple Watch has quickly become the de-facto smartwatch. Its blend of design, capability and simplicity make it a hugely useful device whether you want to stay organised, monitor your fitness, or simply have Mickey Mouse tell you the time.

But how can you make sure that you don't buy one only to find a new model is announced the following week? How can you avoid spending money only to see the price drop a month later? In this article we explain when the best time to make your purchase is - we can help you shop at the right time to get the best deals. 

For advice on which model to buy, read our Apple Watch buying guide.

When is a good time to buy an Apple Watch?

A new Apple Watch is launched by Apple almost every September - like clockwork (excuse the pun!) Apple has stuck to that schedule since the second-generation models were announced in September 2016.

In other words, you should always work on the basis that new Apple Watch models will make their debuts in September, usually at the same time as new iPhones are announced.

There was a slight change to the usual pattern when the Apple Watch Series 7 was announced at Apple's California Streaming event on Tuesday 14 September 2021: Apple didn't actually start to sell the watch until 15 October (with pre-orders starting on 8 October).

With this timing in mind, if it's the latest, newest Apple Watch you are after, you probably don't want to buy an Apple Watch in the run up to the anticipated September release date of a new model. So the late summer is generally not the best time to buy.

Plus, if it's one of the older models you are after then you might see some great discounts just after a new model launches.

Then again, just after the watch is released isn't necessarily a great time to buy either: if you are looking for a discount it is unlikely that you will see one until the spring (although you might be lucky and see one around Black Friday).

Apple Watch 7

Now that the Apple Watch 7 is on sale you could certainly buy one - if you are looking for your first Apple Watch or an update from an older model (pre-Apple Watch 4). If you are considering upgrading from an Apple Watch 6, maybe even an Apple Watch 5, then we would recommend that you wait another year. As we discuss in separate articles, there are some reasons to buy the Apple Watch 7, but there are also some reasons not to buy the Apple Watch 7.

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Price comparison from over 24,000 stores worldwide

Apple Watch 6

The new Apple Watch 7 has a larger screen and revamped design, as well as a faster processor chip and other new features, but it's not a whole lot different to the Series 6. If you shop around you might be able to find a Series 6 at a reduced price as third-party resellers to start discounting the Apple Watch 6 in order to get rid of their old stock. While these kinds of discounts are available it could be a great time to buy an Apple Watch 6.

Retailer Price Delivery  

Price comparison from over 24,000 stores worldwide

Apple Watch SE

Another Watch you could buy from Apple right now is the Apple Watch SE. This model sits between the still-on-sale Apple Watch 3 and the Apple Watch 7. It's a good option if you want a watch that doesn't cost a fortune and will last a few years. Wondering whether to buy the SE or the Apple Watch 3? Read: Apple Watch SE and Series 3.

Retailer Price Delivery  

Price comparison from over 24,000 stores worldwide

Apple Watch 3

The Apple Watch Series 3 launched in September 2017, so quite a long time ago in the scheme of things. For this reason we don't really recommend buying one, despite the low price of £199/$199. We'd suggest that if you want a cheaper Apple Watch you look at an Apple Watch SE, or seek out a deal on one of the now discontinued models.

Retailer Price Delivery  

Price comparison from over 24,000 stores worldwide

To see the latest deals for the Apple Watch check out our roundup of the Best Apple Watch deals and don't forget to visit the Apple Refurbished store to find the best offers on second-hand kit.