Apple Watch Ultra (Photo: Apple)



By Dennison DeNatalie


Though the Apple Watch Ultra is two months old, I wanted to thoroughly test it before publicizing my thoughts. Well, here we are – I’ve now had the opportunity to put the Apple Watch Ultra through its paces. Apple released the Apple Watch Ultra in September at their annual iPhone event. Being one of the first people to have the iPhone 14 Pro, I also had to purchase the Apple Watch Ultra. 

Apple claims that the Ultra is more durable than any other Apple Watch ever produced. And the redesign sure makes it seem that way. The Ultra features a new Sapphire Crystal display, the most durable Apple Watch display ever. This display is surrounded by a Titanium and Ceramic Case, which slightly protrudes from the glass to protect it. 


The Watch Ultra is available in one version but with different bands. All Apple Watch Ultra are 49MM in size and have LTE and GPS connectivity. Meaning ….. no need to search for the cellular version; there is only one! Ultra is also a bit heavier on the wrist, but it feels like a solid watch and would hold up to quite a bit of abuse. 


Watch Ultra features a new Action button. This button on the left can be configured to do many different tasks, including turning on or off the flashlight (which I have set up to do), any shortcut, or even opening an app. Long-time Apple Watch users may find that this button gets in the way of hitting the digital crown or side button, but just like anything, you get used to it very quickly. 


The Ultra’s digital crown and the side button also have a new protection method. The right side of the Ultra has this protrusion that seats the Digital Crown and Side Button within it. The Digital Crown has much less travel than in previous versions of watches.


Ultra comes with a whole new host of safety features for the customer base for who the watch was designed. For hikers, Ultra features a new siren, waypoint tracking, and satellite communication. For divers, the watch can track depth and water temperature. For athletes, the watch can call for help by itself in case of an emergency.


As a firefighter, I’ve had the Ultra in some intense heat. The watch has held up with no issues at all and still tracks those vital activity goals while working. The Ultra also tracks temperatures constantly, so I can always look back and check what the temperatures are under firefighting gear. Pretty cool, if you ask me.


Testing the Apple Watch Ultra in the fire truck. (Photo: D.DeNatalie)


Phone calls have gotten better on the Ultra. The speakers are incredibly loud for a smartwatch, and the three-microphone array makes it easy for the other person to hear me. These microphones work together to create the best possible sound and help with noise cancellation. 


All-in-all, does everybody need the Apple Watch Ultra? No. The Ultra is the G-Shock of Apple Watches. For the daredevil. For the thrill seeker. For the dangerous individual. Or, for the Apple junky who wants anything with an Apple logo. 


At $800, some people will be deterred just by that. For more information on specs or how to purchase, visit