One of the biggest perks of Apple’s new Apple Watch Series 3 was supposed to be the embedded LTE cellular chipset, which allows the watch to use cellular data without being paired to a smartphone. But many of the reviews of the new watch indicated that the device suffered from a connectivity glitch — wherein the device tries to connect to unknown WiFi networks instead of connecting to cellular. As a result many reviewers highlighted that the primary function of the device — using it on your LTE data plan — was largely unusable.
Apple has subsequently acknowledged the problem and says it will be fixed in an upcoming patch at an unspecified date.
“We have discovered that when Apple Watch Series 3 joins unauthenticated Wi-Fi networks without connectivity, it may at times prevent the watch from using cellular,” an Apple spokesperson told The Verge in an e-mail. “We are investigating a fix for a future software release.”
Still, the device will be shipping without said fix in place, meaning many early adopters won’t really be able to use the LTE-enabled watch as intended. There’s also been an odd decision by Apple not to allow LTE music streaming until a software update is released sometime next month, making the new device even less useful. There’s another caveat: the device won’t work on prepaid cellular plans or smaller carriers, as it’s only compatible with AT&T, Verizon, Sprint or T-Mobile.
And of course the Apple Watch series 3 won’t be cheap. The device costs $330 without LTE and $400 with the embedded LTE chipset. From there, you’ll need to pay your carrier an additional
$10 per month charge
to connect it to your existing wireless plan. Some carriers like Verizon are also charging users a $30 activation fee to use the device as well.