News, Reviews, Watch

WatchOS 2 Released

WatchOS 2

WatchOS 2 became available this morning. It is the first OS update for this device and it appears to be significant as promised with new features for users and developers.

Third Party Apps Run Natively

Support for third party apps so they can run natively on Apple Watch is an exciting addition since it opens the door for developers to bring us new and exciting apps to Apple’s wearable device.

New Watch Faces

The new watch faces are stunning and include time lapse video of Hong Kong, London, New York, Paris and more.  They come alive on your wrist. There are also nine new colors for customizing watch faces and a new modular face.

Photos

Photo and Photo Album allows you to view your favorite photos every time you raise your wrist.  This feature also supports Live Images which can be taken with the new iPhone 6s and 6 Plus.

Time Travel

Scroll backward or forward through time with the digital crown.

Nightstand Mode

Nightstand mode allows the Apple Watch to serve as an alarm clock

Siri Improvements

Start a specific workout, ask for transit directions, ask to see a glance. Supports FaceTime audio calls and email replies. Control supported HomeKit devices with Siri.  Additional language support for Austria and Belgium (French & Dutch), and Norway. 

Activity and workouts

Activity and workouts have a number of new features but most significant are support of third party apps so the results show on the activity rings.  Activity and workout data can be shared from the Activity app on the iPhone.

Apple Pay

Apple Pay and Wallet on the watch have also seen improvements with support for Discover cards, rewards and store cards. And you can now add passes to Wallet directly from third party apps.

Friends and Digital Touch

Add more friends, multiple friends groups can be added and named. Send multi-colored sketches, new options for animated emoji.

Maps

Transit view showing lines, stations and connections for select major cities. View station placards, View list of directions for current route.

Music

New beats one button to play Beats radio, Quick Play button to play a variety of songs from Apple Music. 

Additional Features

In addition you can now reply to email using dictation, emoji or Smart Replies, Make and receive FaceTime calls, support for WiFi calling without iPhone, Activation Lock prevents others from activating your Apple Watch without your Apple ID and Password.

There is more to this update than I can provide here.  The list of developer improvements alone could fill it’s own article.  If you have an Apple Watch you will want this update ASAP.  Enjoy.

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Carmine Delligatti-Drummer, former Support Manager for Deneba Software, ACD Systems, Mareware, Inc. and Swiss Made Marketing. Avid technology blogger and Managing Editor of Cupertinotimes.com.