Alongside a release of Xcode 6.2 with WatchKit tools for the upcoming Apple Watch, Apple today posted its iOS 8.2 beta for developers. The release, build 12D436, follows the release of iOS 8.1.1 to all users yesterday with fixes and performance improvements for iPad 2 and iPhone 4S users.
The iOS 8.2 beta allows developers to start testing their apps for the upcoming Apple Watch wearable, but doesn’t appear to include any other notable features (at least not in Apple’s release notes). More specifically, developers can now start building companion experiences that include two optional Apple Watch interfaces:
iOS 8.2 lets you give Apple Watch users access to data and functionality related to your iOS app. The primary interface you can create is a Watch app, which gives users quick, focused ways to access their content without opening your iOS app on their iPhone… You can also enhance your Watch app by providing two optional Apple Watch interfaces that give users timely, high-value information: A Glance provides a screenful of meaningful information related to a Watch app. As its name implies, a Glance displays information that users can absorb instantly, without interaction; in fact, tapping a Glance on Apple Watch launches your Watch app. A custom notification interface displays information from the local or remote notifications that get delivered to your iOS app. And if your iOS app registers for interactive notifications, your custom notification interface on Apple Watch can include action buttons
Apple says the new WatchKit tools arriving with iOS 8.2 and the new Xcode release include “templates and other tools you need to design, develop, and debug all three types of Watch interfaces.”
The new iOS 8.2 beta is available to developers alongside the new Xcode 6.2 and iOS 8.2 SDK release through Apple’s developer portal.