New Apple Watch band colors celebrate Black History Month
Apple Watch Black Unity Sport Loop, new watch face and more launch today
➡️ The Shortcut Skinny: Black History Month
🌍 You can order the new $49 Black Unity Sport Loop now, available Jan 24
🇪🇹 New Black Unity Watch Face and iPhone wallpaper to come next week
🎨 Apple will also highlight Black creatives in Apple Music, Apple TV, and more
🤔 January 24 all but confirmed for the release date of iOS 16.3 and WatchOS 9.3
Apple has released a new Black Unity Sport Loop watch band for the Apple Watch, available to order now and available on January 24 for $49. A complementary watch face, for Apple Watch Series 4 and newer, along with a new iPhone wallpaper, are due out next week when the new versions of Watch OS and iOS debut.
Now is a particularly good time to upgrade your watch, whether you’re on the Series 3 or you’re just ready to move on from the Series 4 or newer, as the Apple Watch Series 8, which we think is the best Apple Watch for most folks, is on sale for $50 off at Amazon (we get a small commission if you buy with that link).
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Other Black History Month celebrations
Like past efforts Apple has made to honor Black History Month, the watch face, new iPhone wallpaper, and sport loop will feature the colors of the Pan-African flag, a green, red and black flag that symbolizes unity, liberation, natural splendor and a sort of national identity – one not tied to a particular African nation – of African natives and diaspora around the world.
Apple will likewise honor the month with special playlists in Apple Music, spotlights on software that honors communities of color, curated Apple TV programming, special Apple Fitness+ content, and more, all highlighting Black achievement and creativity.
Of particular note is a series of Guides in Apple Maps created by The Smithsonian Museum, which allows users to explore civil rights landmarks throughout the country.
Sneaky iOS 16.3 and WatchOS 9.3 announcement
Apple’s press release also snuck in another announcement: iOS 16.3 and WatchOS 9.3 will release on Tuesday, January 24. The company tends to release its software updates on Tuesdays, and it will require one to add the new wallpapers and watch faces. Add that to the fact the new Watch band will be available that day, and it’s all but confirmed we’ll see the newest version of each OS ready to download on the 24th.
A week of Apple news?
Following Tuesday’s announcement of the new MacBook Pro 14- and- 16-inch 2023 lineup, new Mac Mini models and today’s (sort of) surprise HomePod (2nd Generation) news, and now this, could we be in for more Apple updates this week? Rumors persist that a new Mac Pro is coming, as well as cheaper Apple monitors and even a fresh MacBook Air with the M2 chip and a bigger screen.
We’ll keep an ear to the ground as the week rolls on, but I’d consider more news unlikely, given a quiet rumor mill so far.