Apple today announced watchOS 6 — the next major release of watchOS for the Apple Watch. The update further helps in making the Apple Watch act as a standalone device and reduce its reliance on the iPhone for basic tasks.
watchOS 6 is packed with plenty of new features including a dedicated App Store, new watch faces, improved health tracking features, and more.
New System Apps
watchOS 6 comes with a number of new system apps including Audiobooks, Voice Memos, and Calculator. The last one can even be used to calculate tips or quickly split a bill!
Dedicated App Store
watchOS 6 introduces a new standalone App Store on the Apple Watch. The App Store is directly accessible from the Apple Watch and will allow one to directly download apps on the wearable. Apple is hoping this would help in improving and increasing the quality and quantity of apps for the Apple Watch.
Users can browse and search the App Store using Dictation, Scribble, or just asking Siri.
watchOS 6 introduces a number of new watch faces. This includes a gradient watch face in which one can select a color of their choice, a modern digital watch face with bold fonts, California dial, and more.
All watch faces in watchOS 6 feature Taptic chime which basically sounds a chime every hour.
New APIs, Standalone Apps
watchOS 6 will allow developers to create apps for the Apple Watch without the need for creating an iPhone app.
Apple is also making a new streaming audio API with watchOS 6 for developers. This will allow for Spotify and other similar high-quality streaming apps to make their way to Apple Watch.
Apple is adding Activity Metrics to the Apple Watch’s Health app. As the name indicates, your health metrics and recorded data are compared to other Apple Watch users across the globe so as to further motivate you.
watchOS is getting a new Noise app that detects the decibel level of your surrounding and notifies you when it is dangerous for your ears.
There’s a new Noise complication as well that detects and shows the surrounding noise level on the watch face.
watchOS 6 introduces Cycle Tracking thereby allowing females to track their menstrual cycle.
Menstrual cycle tracking is also going to be available on the Health app in iPhone.
watchOS 6 comes with plenty of other changes and improvements. Some of them are as follows:
- For You in Apple Music
- Mute Mail Threads
- Smart guidance in Maps
- Shared lists in Reminders
- Redesigned Walkie-Talkie
- Siri web search results
- Now Playing App
- Dynamic Smart Replies
- Shazam with Siri
- Account login on watch
- Automatic software updates
- Cellular connectivity complication
watchOS 6 will be available in September this year.