Apple Watch GPS Vs Cellular: Top Full Guide 2022

Many people might not know the difference between the Apple Watch GPS Vs Cellular. The main difference is that the Cellular can connect to LTE and 3G data, while the GPS can only connect to GPS satellites.

The Cellular can also make and receive calls and texts, while the GPS can only track your location. So, if you’re trying to decide which one to get, here are the benefits of each.

Apple Watch GPS

Apple Watch GPS

The Apple Watch GPS (WiFi only) model costs the most and is the lightest of all the models. It doesn’t contain a cellular chip, so you get a longer battery.


  • Less expensive
  • Models with the lowest weight
  • Battery life is slightly longer.
  • Numerous color options


  • You must keep your iPhone close at hand for certain tasks.
  • Aluminum is the only material that can be used.
  • Family Setup is not supported.

Apple Watch GPS + Cellular

Apple Watch GPS + Cellular

The GPS + Cellular model allows Apple Music streaming and the Podcasts app streaming regardless of location. It is available on the Apple Watch Series 7 & Apple Watch SE.


  • Apple Music streaming support
  • Models in Aluminum, Stainless Steel, or Titanium
  • Your iPhone can be left at home.
  • Works well with Family Setup


  • More expensive models
  • Monthly fee

What Are the Differences Between GPS And Cellular Apple Watch?

What Are the Differences Between GPS And Cellular Apple Watch

The main difference between GPS and Cellular Apple Watch is their connectivity. GPS + Cellular allows you to leave your iPhone at home and still be able to send texts, make calls and keep connected with your watch.

Users can send and receive text messages, but not calls, with the GPS-only version. The GPS-only version is for those who don’t like to leave their phones at home. The GPS + Cellular version supports Bluetooth and WiFi, but it also supports Bluetooth and WiFi.

The GPS + Cellular watch also has the advantage of Family Setup. This feature was added to WatchOS 7. Family setup lets users create a family using a cellular Apple watch without the need for an iPhone. Family members can now leave the house and not have to take their phones with them. This feature is available only with the Apple Watch Series 4 release.

The Apple Watch’s GPS + Cellular model allows you to enjoy convenience and freedom without your phone. This is a great way to reduce your weight and make doing things like jogging or exercising easier. All of the great features on the watch are not free. You should expect to pay more for any cellular Apple Watch Series model. Cellular connectivity can be enjoyed for an additional $50-$100.

Cellular Carrier Support for Apple Watch Series

To connect your watch to a cellular network, it will need to be connected to the same carrier as your iPhone. It would be impossible for you to connect your Apple watch if your current carrier doesn’t support it. Major US carriers, including AT&T, Verizon, and Xfinity, support cellular connectivity for Apple Watch. Before you buy the cellular version, check with other carriers.

However, that’s not all. You will have to pay an additional monthly fee for the Apple Watch’s cellular functionality. The average monthly cost of these prices is $10. Not all carriers support Family setup. You should also ensure that your provider supports this requirement.

Battery Life

The battery life of the two watch models is different. The Apple Watch GPS connects to your iPhone via Bluetooth. This allows you to use the GPS to navigate the region. Because the cellular model can connect via LTE to the internet whenever you’re not at home, it has shorter battery life. The difference is not noticeable.

Let’s look at both the Apple battery tests for the Apple Watch Series 6. Apple has tested both Apple Watch Series 6 models for battery life. The watch’s features were tested with an iPhone connected via Bluetooth. It lasted for 18 hours.

The Apple Watch 6 GPS+ cellular was tested in similar conditions and ran for 16 hours. Although it may not seem like much, this battery life difference is important to consider before purchasing.

An At-a-glance Breakdown

It would be difficult to distinguish between the Apple Watch Cellular and the GPS by looking at one glance. The Cellular model has a red ring around its Digital Crown, but the exterior is identical. The inside is what makes the difference.

Case Options

There are notable differences between the case materials available to users depending on whether they choose GPS + Cellular or GPS + Cellular.

Although the GPS-only model can only be fitted with an aluminum case, it is attractive and has a solid feel. However, some people prefer stainless steel for its many benefits. If you’re looking for a watch with a titanium or stainless steel case, the GPS + Cellular model is available.

Carrier restrictions

LTE connectivity is available on the GPS + Cellular Apple Watch models. You can piggyback your existing carrier plan for an additional $10 per month and still have internet and phone connectivity. Check out the best Apple Watch cell plans to ensure that you get a great deal.

LTE coverage on an Apple Watch allows you to do everything you can when tied to your iPhone’s information. This includes calling, receiving messages, using Siri, and navigating via Maps. You can also play with third-party apps.

An Apple Watch cellular plan cannot be purchased separately from your iPhone. Your Apple Watch must be on AT&T if you are. Your Apple Watch will have a separate assigned number, but it is not your phone number. It is the account assignment number.

Note: You should consider leaving your Apple Watch at home if you purchase a pay-as-you-go SIM card for international travel. It will be subject to international charges if used abroad (there is no SIM card in the Apple Watch).

Apple Music and Podcasts streaming support

You can stream Apple Music, Apple Podcasts, and audiobooks even if you aren’t connected to Wi-Fi, Cellular, or Wi-Fi.

Your iPhone can sync audiobooks, podcasts, and music to your Watch. You can then play content from your Watch even if you don’t have your iPhone nearby.

Family Setup

You don’t need to purchase both the iPhone and Apple Watch if you’re going to gift one or more Apple Watches to family members. Instead, you can use Family Setup to set up your Apple Watch and allow them to use it without a rope.

Family Setup is an important consideration when buying the Apple Watch Cellular + GPS. While you might not be using Cellular, it is worth considering passing your Apple Watch on to a friend or relative.

Family Setup is compatible with the following Apple Watch models:

  • Apple Watch Series 7 GPS + Cellular
  • Apple Watch SE GPS + Cellular


The last metric that distinguishes these devices is their price: The GPS-only Apple Watch SE starts from $279 for a 40mm aluminum case, while the GPS + Cellular SE begins at $329.

For $399, the 41mm aluminum case of the GPS-only Apple Watch Series 7 is available. The $499 GPS + Cellular Apple Watch Series 7 comes with the same case and starts at $399. The price difference might be worth it if you need cellular service.

Some relevant posts:


Is it better to get GPS or cellular Apple Watch?

The GPS-only Apple Watch is more efficient than the GPS + Cellular model, but neither one performs well when used with LTE.

Do you need Cellular on Apple Watch?

You don’t need to make, receive, or take calls via cell phone. You will need the paired iPhone or a Wi-Fi network for the watch and the paired iPhone if it isn’t nearby.

Does GPS on Apple Watch work without Cellular?

You can send and receive iMessages, SMS and make and take phone calls if your Apple Watch GPS-only has a Wi-Fi connection. Are you concerned about the weather? Your Apple Watch GPS-only will be able to get the current temperature and forecast for you via Wi-Fi only.

Can I answer calls on Apple Watch without Cellular?

Your cellular carrier may offer Wi-Fi calling. You can use your Apple Watch to make or receive calls over Wi-Fi, even if your paired iPhone is not with you. Only your Apple Watch must be in the range of a Wi-Fi network to which your iPhone has been connected in the past.


When choosing a smartwatch, one of the key considerations is whether to opt for a GPS or cellular model. Both have their pros and cons, but which is right for you? In this article, we’ll compare the benefits of apple watch GPS vs. cellular models to help you decide. Thanks for reading!

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