Images show off an interesting circular Apple Watch Air concept

We’ve seen a few Apple Watch concepts but rarely ones that are round in shape. A new one shows off just how attractive such a device could be.

It comes from designer Felipe Duarte (via Yankodesign). Dubbed Apple Watch Air, the concept slaps on an Apple Watch Loop variant to the existing lineup.

Felipe imagines the device as the start of a new range so is marking it as Series 1. We’re not really sure that the Cupertino outfit would adopt such a naming convention. In our mind they would more likely number it to coincide with the current lineup.

Stunning concept images show off a circular Apple Watch Air

Naming aside, the concept is both beautiful and functional. Plus it adds a bit of variety.

With so many generations adopting pretty much the same look, it would be a refreshing take on the Apple Watch idea. Mind you, there have been a few tweaks along the way but nothing really that has rocked the boat. These included a slight change in dimensions, better display quality and more.

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Felipe imagines an Apple Watch with a circular body and concave display. This would be attached to a watch strap which establishes a protective bumper around the edges. That would make the device both sporty in looks and robust.

There were rumours circulating around a few months back that Apple is exploring a more rugged take on its smartwatch. The combination of a concave display and rubber bumper around the hardware would offer a a lot of protection from accidental bumps and drops.

Stunning concept images show off a circular Apple Watch Air

Switching bands couldn’t be easier as the case pops out of the strap. We can imagine Apple going to town designing a plethora of watch bands in different colours, materials and designs.

Heck, you could even use the thing as a pocket watch without the band. Or perhaps attach it to your clothes with a specially designed strap. Withings is known for doing this sort of thing with some of its fitness trackers.

Stunning concept images show off a circular Apple Watch Air

Of course, most of the current Apple Watch functionality would still be there. For example, the much loved rotating crown which now slips through a hole in the band. The heart rate sensor remains as does other fitness tech. All of this would be coupled with a magnetic wireless charging zone on the base.

We’re not really sure how Apple could accommodate for a speaker on the side. Perhaps with appropriately placed perforations in the band.

Stunning concept images show off a circular Apple Watch Air

Notably, Apple would need to adopt the operating system for the circular layout. But the interface would remain very similar to the current one.

Stunning concept images show off a circular Apple Watch Air

How likely are we to see a round Apple Watch?

Not very – at least not in 2021. Nevertheless, it is fun to imagine what a such a device could look like. Other concept images have emerged such as this one in 2018.

Circular shaped smartwatches are quite common. You have to look no further than the Garmin range of sports watches which mostly adopt this look. Then, of course, there are Samsung Galaxy watches, Amazfit, Polar, Withings and many others. Some of these brands have a combination of circular and square devices.

One could easily imagine an Apple Watch that is circular in design but retains the core functions and operating system. Something that would offer more choice to consumers.

So far Apple has chosen to stick to a classic design since we saw the first iteration just over five years ago. The square looks offers more display space and is suitable for viewing apps, photos and maps.

But Apple has in the past filed patents for a circular watch. One of these details a single continuous flexible display covering both the face and the band. The bezel width surrounding the display is minimised below 4-5 mm or perhaps even less than 1mm. That particular patent was filed a number of years back.

A lot of information has already leaked out on Apple Watch Series 7. But there has not been a single credible mention that a circular variant could be on the cards.

Having said that, we are sure there are people out there that would prefer such look. And those that would be absolutely against the idea. What is certain is that a circular Apple Watch would surely divide opinion.

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Ivan Jovin

Ivan has been a tech journalist for over 7 years now, covering all kinds of technology issues. He is the guy who gets to dive deep into the latest wearable tech news.

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