Since the launch of Apple Watch Series 4 and watchOS 5, the Apple Watch community has shifted its focus towards debating whether or not Apple should allow third-party watch faces.

Do you think it’s time for Apple to let developers create custom Apple Watch faces?

With the Apple Watch Series 4 and watchOS 5, Apple unveiled a handful of new watch faces for users, including the information-dense Infograph faces, as well as more visually appealing options such as the fire and water designs. Despite the new and more versatile designs, however, Apple Watch face creation remains a locked ecosystem, meaning third-parties can’t create their own designs.

In response to growing calls for third-party watch face support, developer Steve Troughton-Smith created an Xcode project that uses Apple’s SpriteKit framework to allow creation of custom Apple Watch faces. Using Troughton-Smith’s tool, other developers such as David Smith have been showing off custom Apple Watch faces.

Personally, I think it’s absolutely time for third-party watch faces on Apple Watch. Opening up the process to additional developers and designers will undoubtedly yield some very useful and visually pleasing faces. I do, however, think Apple would need to employ a rather stringent approval process for third-party watch faces.

For instance, many classic watch face designs are trademarked by their original creator, and Apple would have to walk a fine line ensuring that third-party creations for Apple Watch does not infringe on any of those designs.

We’ve embedded a few of the SpriteKit creations below, and as you can see, it’s more than clear developers are capable of designing watch faces that rival even Apple’s first-party designs.

So what do you think? Should Apple finally allow developers and designers to create third-party watch faces for Apple Watch? Take the poll below and elaborate on your opinion down in the comments!

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About the Author

Chance Miller

Chance is an editor for the entire 9to5 network and covers the latest Apple news for 9to5Mac.

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