watchOS Overview Updated June 8, 2020

watchOS

Simple, minimalistic, small: The platform for the best smartwatch on the market

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163 'watchOS' stories

June 2015 - June 2020


watchOS only runs on the Apple Watch and launched alongside the product back in 2015. It has seen several major revisions since its launch, such as axing glances, the friends UI, and more.

The original version of the software was very slow and relied on your iPhone for its apps. Everything presumably ran over Bluetooth, and would be unable to open any apps if your connected iPhone was out of range.

Apple quickly moved away from interaction model and pushed native applications as of watchOS 2.0, where the majority of the app’s interface and information were installed on your Apple Watch, instead of your iPhone.

watchOS 3.0 added support for background app refresh, which allowed apps to run in the background, but also enabled complications to be updated without needing to completely launch an app.

With watchOS 4.0, and the Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE, Apple took this interaction model a step further. The company introduced APIs to allow applications to run completely independently of the iPhone. This meant that users were allowed to stream Apple Music, get the latest News, or take a phone call without being in the range of your iPhone. However, an iPhone is still required to setup and manage your Apple Watch.

Learn more about watchOS by reading the articles below:

watchOS Stories June 8

Watchsmith is a powerful Apple Watch application that gives you the ability to create custom dynamic complications for your watch faces. A new update for Watchsmith today focuses on introducing dynamic and interactive maps.

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watchOS Stories June 3

Right after tvOS 13.4.8 beta, Apple has just released the first watchOS 6.2.8 beta version to developers. The update comes two days after watchOS 6.2.6 was released to the public, and as with tvOS, Apple has skipped version 6.2.7 for some unknown reason.

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watchOS Stories April 8

Apple has released watchOS 6.2.1 to the public today, bringing bug fixes and performance improvements specifically related to FaceTime. Today’s update for Apple Watch users comes following yesterday’s release of iOS 13.4.1 and iPadOS 13.4.1.

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Hodinkee delivers a lesson on twilight with the Apple Watch ‘Solar’ face

Jack Forster has published a fascinating piece for the watch experts at Hodinkee that takes a deep dive look at the Solar face in watchOS 6 for Apple Watch Series 4 and Series 5:

watchOS Stories March 30

9to5Mac exclusively reported earlier this month that iOS 14 and watchOS 7 will include a new SchoolTime mode and kid mode. The latter feature includes the ability for a parent to set up and manage an Apple Watch for a child with a single iPhone.

Each Apple Watch account is currently connected to a single iPhone’s Apple ID. This new mode will let a parent manage their child’s Apple Watch from the parent’s iPhone, and the child will not be required to own an iPhone to use the Apple Watch.

If this feature in development is completed and released this year, the Apple Watch will become much better for kids than ever before, but how will activity tracking work? Based on iOS 14 code obtained by 9to5Mac, we can now answer that question.

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watchOS Stories March 24

In addition to iOS 13.4 and iPadOS 13.4, Apple is also releasing watchOS 6.2 to the public today. The update brings in-app purchase support to Apple Watch apps, ECG features to more countries, and more. Read on for the full details.

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