The Apple Watch: The Full Run Down

 

Whats Coming Apple Watch OS 2 Update

Early adopting with any product can be a slightly dodgy experience as companies rush to get their latesrt gadget out and on the market. In the past this has been a criticism of even the Mighty House of Apple.

So with a device as fresh as the Apple Watch,  Appleheads have been waiting to see how quicky the company is going to iron out some of those initial teething difficulties.

Well it wasn’t that long at all really, as we need to realise that this has probably been the slowest roll out of any new device from Apple.  Up until now Apple watch has only been available on pre order. Why? maybe it was to judge demand, or may be it was to give them a little bit more time to get things right before it went on general across the counter release.

So with this months WWDC apple laid to rest a lot of fears about about the product with the hot on the heels release of Apple Watch OS 2 update.

There’s plenty to discuss here, as developers will now have access to the smartwatch’s sensors and controls like the Taptic Engine, Digital Crown and more, meaning more native apps opposed to ones that are simply ported over

The update isn’t going to be available until tha autumn which is when we can also expect the launch of iOS 9.

Just like past major Apple OS updates, the Apple Watch’s software upgrade will be free.

The controls and sensors are now freely available for developers to utilise in their apps. We can expect exciting things in the next few months. I remember when the iPad came out, everyone said it’s just a big iPhone, which has obviously turned into something much more.

The Digital Crown

The Digital Crown will provide functionality beyond zooming in and out. Rotating the crown will let you ‘Time Travel’ (basically scroll) through events up to 72 hours into the future or past events, right on the watch face. This function is also applicable to Weather and news headlines  Insteon can also control your house lights with a simple turn of the crown.

The Microphone

The microphone will be accessible which should makes the Voice Memo app pretty useful on the wrist. This should mean developers will also be able to use the microphone in their builds.

The Accelerometer

Developers will now have access to the accelerometer so you can expect future apps to utilise this feature. Apple demoed golf app Ping that measured a person’s swing.

Tetherless Wi-Fi

Yes, this sounds exactly like what you think. This one is important as he Apple Watch will be able to connect directly to open Wi-Fi networks. No iPhone needed!

NewWatch faces

In addition to the 10 faces already supplied in the Watch,  there’s gooing to be some new kids on the block.

My personal favourite of these is the Time Lapse – Cities around the world make a great backdrop for your time device. Hong Kong, London, Mack Lake, New York and Shanghai are the five cities Apple shot time-lapse videos over 24 hours to utilise in the new faces.

You can now use your own Photos – Just like iPhone backgrounds, your  pictures are now usable on your smartwatch face.

Photo Album – This displays a gallery from any photo album every time you raise your wrist.

Complications

In the new ‘complications’ the  information in various watch faces can now display third party apps. That means Flight times, home controlled systems with Homekit devices can be accessed from your wrist, directly on your watchface.

Email replies

Finally you will be able to reply to your emails. You’ll be able to to this directly from your wrist with voice dictation, emojis and smart responses.

Videos

FaceTime will also make it onto watchOS 2 and also short form videos like Vines can be watched. Apple says the quality of the videos will look great because of the watch’s OLED which is behind the Ion-X and it’s sapphire glass screens.

Fitness and Siri

Workouts will be more useful with the OS 2 update. HealthKit will be available with more metrics shown on the watch and a real-time heart rate monitor that will be able to stream from your wrist.

Saying the “Hey Siri” prompts a workout, and can be as specific as “Hey Siri, start a 30 minute run” or “Hey Siri start a 300 calorie walk” all without needing to open the app.

Siri is getting upgraded and will be able to provide Glances. Say “Hey Siri, show me the Instagram glance.”

Siri will also be able to control all your HomeKit devices and also give you transit directions.

Maps

Apple Maps have been improved with new transit directions that will show up on your wrist with full train, bus and subway schedules. Initially only select cities around the world will provide the information. Also walking directions to and from transit stops will be part of watchOS 2.

Friends and Digital Touch

This too has been updated, we all have more than 12 friends, so now you can layer and sort your friends and contacts directly on the Watch. The sketching experience will also be improved with the use of more than one colour so people can make better pretty pictures.

Nightstand Mode

Nightstand

Finally Nightstand mode will flip your Apple Watch face to show horizontally while it’s charging. Simple and brilliant.

 

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June 23, 2015

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