Apple wants to rely less on the iPhone when it comes to using key features of the Apple Watch. The technology company based in California is planning to make its smartwatch more functional and independent. Units that will be released later this year are expected to no longer need the assistance of the phone for calls and messages.

Future Apple Watches will have their own LTE wireless chips, allowing them to connect directly to cellular networks. Aside from making calls and sending text messages, there will be other features that can be used even without the help of the iPhone. Some of these are streaming music and accessing maps. An improved battery life is also likely for the new batch of smartwatches from Apple.

It is believed that the LTE modem for the new Apple Watch will come from Intel Corporation. Apple and Intel started working together late last year.

Before Apple partnered with Intel, it was Qualcomm Incorporated that provided the chips. However, as of this moment, Apple and Qualcomm are engaged in a legal battle.


Apple Watch Release Date Remains Uncertain

The new Apple Watch is projected to be released this fall, but that is yet to be confirmed. There is a possibility that it would not hit the market until 2018.

Last year, Apple attempted to release an Apple Watch which had similar features to the one it is currently developing. However, that plan failed to materialize.

The uncertainties are not discouraging a number of telecommunications companies that are reportedly willing to sell the Apple Watch when it comes out. These are AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon.


Apple Watch Sales Improves

On Tuesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook stated that the sales of Apple Watch improved to over 50 percent since the third quarter. Ben Bajarin from Creative Strategies believes Apple sold around 2-3 million units.

The Apple Watch is labeled as other products and this category helped Apple earn $2.74 million in revenue. This is 23 percent higher from the same period of time last year.

Besides the Apple Watch, the AirPods also helped Apple increase its annual revenue. However, it appears that these gadgets were the only ones that excelled in the other products category.

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