The $399 Apple Watch Series 3 is the latest and most significant update to Apple’s line of smartwatches for one important reason: LTE connectivity. With a cellular connection, users are able to talk and stream music on their watches free from the shackles of their extremely lightweight smartphones.
Except, here’s the thing: They’ll still need to own an iPhone 6 or better for any of it to work.
The relevant details are buried on Apple’s press site, and confirm that just owning an Apple Watch with LTE connectivity is not enough to actually use said LTE connectivity.
“Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) requires iPhone 6 or later running iOS 11 or later,” explains the detailed product breakdown.
no deal. “Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular) requires an iPhone 6 or later with iOS 11 or later.”
— Daniel Sims (@dsims) September 12, 2017
But what does that mean, exactly? Would a person need to carry a phone around with them in order to use an independent cellular connection located on their wrist? That wouldn’t make any sense.
We reached out to Apple for clarification, and a spokesperson did indeed confirm that an iPhone is required. However, it’s for “setup only.”
So there you have it: You can’t use the new Series 3 Apple Watch with LTE connectivity without owning an iPhone 6 or better, but once you have it set up you’re free to leave that phone at home and stream tunes to your heart’s content.