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The Apple Watch receives a huge update with watchOS 6, bringing more independence to Apple’s wearable device than ever before. Among the watchOS 6 changes is a brand new App Store app that allows you to manage and download apps directly to the Apple Watch, a new Software Update provision that lets you perform updates, and a new Enhanced Siri voice assistant that’s much more capable than before.

Of course, there’s also many new watch faces, complications, and additional changes and features to enjoy in watchOS 6. Watch our hands-on video walkthrough as we step through dozens of new watchOS 6 changes and features.

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Enhanced Siri

With watchOS 6 you can now ask Siri what song is currently playing in the background. On previous versions of watchOS, Siri would only tell you about the music playing locally on the Apple Watch itself.

Another Siri enhancement includes the ability to ask Siri a question about a topic. You’ll then be presented with a scrollable list of clickable results pertaining to that topic.

watchOS 6 changes and features video walkthrough

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Browse websites directly via Siri

In watchOS 6 you can also now browse websites directly by asking Siri to go to a particular URL. From there, Siri will load the webpage on the small screen, complete with available images and tappable links.

Browse websites from watchOS 6 using Siri

New List View for apps

The alternative list view for apps has now been slightly redesigned with bigger icons and text along with a curved layout.

New list view design watchOS 6

Deleting Stock apps

As of watchOS 6 beta 3, it’s now possible to delete stock applications directly from the grid or list view interface.

Delete stock apps watchOS 6

App Store

For the first time since the arrival of the Apple Watch, it’s now possible to download apps directly on the Watch thanks to a new native App Store app.

watchOS 6 App Store

Redesigned Reminders app

The Reminders app received a big update for iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, and these updates have been extended to the Apple Watch as well.

Reminders app redesign watchOS 6

Calculator app

watchOS 6 brings a native Calculator app to the Apple Watch for the very first time. Included with the calculator is the ability to quickly calculate tips and group billing.

watchOS 6 Calculator app

Voice Memos app

Another first for the Apple Watch is native Voice Memos support in watchOS 6. Not only does the Voice Memos app allow you to create and play back recordings, but it also lets you view recordings created on other devices.

Voice Memos Apple Watch

Noise app

The new Noise app is a utility with a real time complication that helps you protect your hearing by monitoring ambient sound around you. When your Apple Watch detects that the decibel level has risen to a point where hearing could be affected, it’s able to notify you via a tap on the wrist.

Noise app Apple Watch

Audiobooks app

A brand new Audiobooks app lets you listen to your favorite books while on the go. The interface is similar to all of the other audio playback interfaces on Apple Watch.

Audiobooks Apple Watch

Cycle Tracking app

Menstrual cycle tracking is a new feature in iOS 13’s updated Health app, and a companion Cycle Tracking app can now be found on the Apple Watch.

Cycle Tracking Apple Watch

Now Playing

A dedicated Now Playing app is now available from the Home screen on Apple Watch. This application allows you to manage playback of your local devices along with AirPlay connected devices like the HomePod.

Now Playing AirPlay 2 Apple Watch

watchOS 6 changes – App enhancements

Activity

  • View awards directly via Apple Watch

Alarms

  • Add alarm button redesign

Maps

  • Favorites and Collections

Messages

  • Animoji stickers

Music

  • Browse playlists without playing first
  • Browse albums without playing first
  • Redesigned Now Playing interface
  • Redesigned Up Next interface
  • Redesigned Library
  • For You
  • Enhanced options interface

Podcasts

  • Redesigned Now Playing interface

Radio

  • Redesigned Now Playing interface

Weather

  • Updated AQI and UV meters

New Watch Faces

California Watch Face watchOS 6

  • California
  • Gradient
  • Modular Compact
  • Numerals Duo
  • Numerals Mono
  • Solar Dial
  • Original ‘Solar’ is now ‘Solar Graph’

New Complications

  • Audiobooks
  • Calculator
  • Cellular
  • Cycle Tracking
  • Noise
  • Rain
  • Voice Memos

Settings app changes

  • Settings app now has name of user at top
  • Reordered Settings
  • ‘Time’ setting removed (relocated to Clock app settings)

New Settings panels

  • Accessibility
  • Siri gets its own settings pane
  • SOS
  • Privacy

App Settings

  • App Store
  • Clock
  • Health
  • Noise
  • Stocks
  • Weather
  • Workout

Clock

  • New Siri Face Data Sources

Wi-Fi

  • Redesigned panel
  • New Auto HotSpot setting

Bluetooth

  • New Bluetooth toggle

Sounds & Haptics

  • Volume limit
  • Crown Haptics
  • ‘Tap to Speak Time’ for Mickey and Minnie faces removed (now available across all watch faces)
  • Cover to Mute
  • Speak Time
  • Taptic Time
  • Taptic Chimes

Passcode

  • Simple Passcode
  • Erase Data

Siri

  • ‘Listen for Hey Siri’
  • Digital Crown
  • Select Siri voice
  • Use with Siri

General

  • Reorganized layout
  • Software Update
  • Background App Refresh
  • Wake Screen > New ‘While In Session’ option for On Screen Raise Show Last App preference
  • Wake Screen > Return to Last App Session
  • Location Services removed, and placed under General
  • Handoff
  • Accessibility removed, placed under root settings
  • Siri removed, placed under root settings
  • Dictation
  • Screenshots
  • Profiles
  • Usage
  • Reset > Reset Home screen Layout option

What’s your favorite new change or feature in watchOS 6? Sound off down below in the comments with your thoughts and opinions.

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