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Apple Watch 38mm VS 42mm: Which Wrist Size Should I Get?

The Apple Watch 38mm vs 42mm comparison goes beyond just size. The 42mm model offers a longer battery life and a bigger display but also comes with a higher price tag. Continue reading to learn in detail.

Daniel Barrett
Jul 26, 202331523 Shares443981 Views
If you're in the market for an Apple Watch, one of the biggest decisions you'll need to make is choosing the size. Apple offers two different sizes for their Apple Watch: the 38mm and the 42mm.
The Apple Watch 38mm vs 42mmcomparison goes beyond just size. The 42mm model offers a longer battery life and a bigger display but also comes with a higher price tag. Continue reading to learn in detail.

38mm VS 42mm Apple Watch

Before we dive into the specifics of each size, let's take a look at the key differences between the 38mm and 42mm Apple Watch:
  • Screen Size- The most obvious difference between the two sizes is the screen size. The 38mm Apple Watch has a screen size of 1.5 inches, while the 42mm Apple Watch has a screen size of 1.65 inches.
  • Resolution- Because of the difference in screen size, the 42mm Apple Watch has a slightly higher resolution than the 38mm. The 42mm has a resolution of 312x390, while the 38mm has a resolution of 272x340.
  • Weight - The 42mm Apple Watch is slightly heavier than the 38mm. The 42mm weighs in at 52.4g, while the 38mm weighs 40g.
  • Battery Life- The 42mm Apple Watch has a larger battery than the 38mm, which gives it a slightly longer battery life. The 42mm can last up to 18 hours on a single charge, while the 38mm can last up to 16 hours.
  • Price- The 42mm Apple Watch is slightly more expensive than the 38mm. The price difference varies depending on the model and materials used, but the 42mm is typically around $30-$50 more expensive than the 38mm.

What Is 38mm Apple Watch?

Apple Watch Series 3 Smartwatch
Apple Watch Series 3 Smartwatch
The 38mm Apple Watch is the smaller of the two sizes offered by Apple. It has a screen size of 1.5 inches and a resolution of 272x340. The 38mm Apple Watch is designed to fit wrists that are between 130-200mm in circumference. It's the perfect size for people with smaller wrists who want a sleek, low-profile smartwatch.

What Is 42mm Apple Watch?

42mm Apple Watch
42mm Apple Watch
The 42mm Apple Watch is the larger of the two sizes offered by Apple. It has a screen size of 1.65 inches and a resolution of 312x390. The 42mm Apple Watch is designed to fit wrists that are between 140-220mm in circumference. It's the perfect size for people with larger wrists who want a bigger screen and a more substantial watch.

Main Differences Between 38mm And 42mm Apple Watch

Now that we've covered the basics of each size, let's take a closer look at the main differences between the 38mm and 42mm Apple Watch.

Screen Size

The biggest difference between the two sizes is the screen size. The 42mm Apple Watch has a larger screen than the 38mm, which makes it easier to see notifications, messages, and other information on the watch. If you have trouble reading small text or have poor eyesight, you may find the 42mm to be a better choice.

Design

The design of the Apple Watch is largely the same between the 38mm and 42mm models. However, because the 42mm is larger, it may look a bit more substantial on your wrist. This can be a pro or a con depending on your personal preferences.

Battery Life

The 42mm Apple Watch has a slightly larger battery than the 38mm, which gives it a slightly longer battery life. This can be an important factor for people who plan to use their Apple Watch for extended periods without access to a charger. However, the difference in battery life between the two sizes is not significant enough to be a deciding factor on its own.

Price

As we mentioned earlier, the 42mm Apple Watch is slightly more expensive than the 38mm. The price difference varies depending on the model and materials used, but it's typically around $30-$50 more expensive than the 38mm. This may not be a significant difference for some people, but it's worth considering if you're on a budget.

Comfort

The comfort of the Apple Watch is an important factor to consider when choosing a size. The 38mm is lighter and smaller, which can make it more comfortable for people with smaller wrists.
The 42mm is larger and heavier, which can make it feel more substantial on your wrist. However, some people may find the larger size to be uncomfortable, especially if they're not used to wearing a watch.
Person Wearing Two Watches
Person Wearing Two Watches

Which Wrist Size Should I Get?

Ultimately, the answer depends on your personal preferences and needs. Here are some factors to consider when making your decision:

Wrist Size

The most important factor to consider when choosing a size is your wrist size. Apple recommends the 38mm for wrists between 130-200mm in circumference, while the 42mm is designed for wrists between 140-220mm in circumference.
If your wrist is smaller than 140mm, 38mm is probably the better choice. If your wrist is larger than 200mm, the 42mm may be a more comfortable fit.

Right Screen Size

If you plan to use your Apple Watch primarily for reading messages, checking notifications, and other tasks that require a clear view of the screen, the 42mm may be the better choice. The larger screen makes it easier to see small text and details. However, if you prefer a more compact watch, the 38mm may be the better choice.

Style

The style of the Apple Watch is another factor to consider. The 42mm may look more substantial and masculine, while the 38mm may be more feminine and delicate. However, this is largely a matter of personal preference, and both sizes are suitable for men and women.

Consider Comfort

Finally, consider the comfort of the watch. If you have a smaller wrist, the 38mm may be more comfortable to wear for extended periods. If you have a larger wrist, the 42mm may feel more comfortable and secure.

What About The Apple Watch SE?

It's useful to be aware of the distinctions between the Series 3 and Series 6 Apple Watches before selecting one to purchase. How about the Apple Watch SE, though?
The Apple Watch SE falls squarely between the Series 3 and the Series 6, in our opinion. Both the pricing and the processing capability of its chips fall between that of the Series 3 and Series 6. The price of the GPS-only variant is $279, while the price of the GPS-plus cellular device is $329.
The SE contains a second-generation optical heart rate sensor rather than the new electrical heart rate sensor seen in Series 6. It is available in the same sizes as the Series 6 with 32GB of storage, a compass, and an Always On display.
Although it may be purchased in gold, the SE's color selections are more similar to those of the Series 3 and it only comes with an aluminum casing.
The SE is an improvement over the Series 3 in certain areas, but it still falls short of the extensive list of capabilities and choices offered by the Series 6. It is thus a good midway choice, although it can lack the affordability of one and the strength of the other.

Can The Apple Watch 38mm And 42mm Use The Same WatchOS?

Yes, both the Apple Watch 38mm and 42mm can use the same WatchOS. WatchOS is the operating systemthat runs on all Apple Watch models, regardless of their size or generation. This means that any updates or new features that are released for WatchOS will be available for both the 38mm and 42mm models.
However, it's worth noting that some features may be more useful in one size than the other. For example, the larger screen on the 42mm may make it easier to read and interact with certain apps or features, such as maps or the Siri virtual assistant.
On the other hand, the smaller size of the 38mm may be more convenient for people who prefer a more compact and lightweight watch.
In terms of compatibility with third-party apps, both the 38mm and 42mm models are generally supported by the same apps. However, some apps may be optimized for one size or the other, so it's worth checking the app's description or reviews to see if there are any issues with using it on a specific size of Apple Watch.

Apple Watch Sport: Comparison (38mm vs 42mm)

Which Apple Watch Size Is Best For People With Disabilities?

Choosing the right size of Apple Watch can be especially important for people with disabilities. Here are some factors to consider when choosing a size:
For people with visual impairments, the larger screen size of 42mm may be more beneficial. This can make it easier to read the text and view images without having to strain your eyes or use assistive technologies.
For people with mobility or dexterity issues, the size and weight of the watch can be a factor to consider. The 38mm may be more comfortable and easier to wear for people with smaller wrists or limited hand mobility, while the 42mm may feel too heavy or bulky. However, some people may prefer the larger size of 42mm for easier navigation and interaction with the watch.
For people with certain healthconditions or disabilities, the health and fitness features of the Apple Watch can be especially important.
Both the 38mm and 42mm models offer a range of health-tracking features, including heart rate monitoring, activity tracking, and fall detection. However, some people may find the larger screen size of 42mm to be more helpful for viewing their health data and tracking their progress over time.

Which Apple Watch Is Right For You?

The 38mm Apple Watch is likely your best choice if you're a casual user. This device is less powerful and accurate than the most recent variants, but it is smaller and cheaper than the 42mm Apple Watch.

If You Are A Business User

The 38mm could be the best option for you if you often use your Apple Watch for work or job-related activities. Compared to the 42mm Apple Watch, this size is more manageable, simpler to operate, and has a wider range of motion.

If You Are A Frequent Player

A better choice than an Apple view 38mm may be an iPhone 7or 8 if you often play games, view movies, or snap photographs. These phones can easily manage additional activities since their displays are bigger than those on most watches. These phones also tend to be more dependable in general since their CPUs are speedier than those in earlier Apple Watches.

If You Are A Seasoned Player

An iPhoneXS or iPhone XR could be the ideal option for you if you've been playing video games for a while and want something that will still keep up with your favorite titles. These smartphonesare perfect for those who often play video games or are active online since they include A12 Bionic CPUs, which provide much more power and performance than previous iPhones. As a result, they can manage even more activities with ease.
There are many various sorts of individuals and companies that might benefit from adopting an Apple Watch, so picking the appropriate one is crucial. The Apple Watch is definitely your best choice whether you're a casual or business user.
The Apple Watch could be a better choice for you if you play often or are seeking a new gadget. The Apple Watch may not be the greatest option for you if you're brand-new to technology and want to see what all the hoopla is about.

People Also Ask

Can I Use A 42mm Band On A 38mm Apple Watch?

No, the bands are not interchangeable between the two sizes.

Are There Any Design Differences Between The 38mm And 42mm Apple Watch Series 6?

No, the Series 6 models are identical in design between the two sizes.

How Does The Haptic Feedback On The 38mm And 42mm Apple Watch Compare?

There is no difference in the haptic feedback between the two sizes.

Does The 42mm Apple Watch Have A Bigger Speaker Than The 38mm?

Yes, the 42mm has a slightly larger speaker.

Can I Use The Same Charger For Both The 38mm And 42mm Apple Watch?

Yes, both sizes use the same magnetic charging cable.

Conclusion

Choosing between the Apple Watch 38mm vs 42mm can be a difficult decision, but it ultimately comes down to personal preference and needs. If you have a smaller wrist or prefer a more compact watch, 38mm is the better choice.
If you have a larger wrist or want a larger screen for reading messages and other information, the 42mm is the better choice. Consider your wrist size, screen size, style, and comfort of each size before making your decision.
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