Apple unveils watchOS 10 — the biggest Apple Watch update in years
Apple has officially unveiled watchOS 10, the iPhone maker’s biggest Apple Watch update in years, bringing users a fresh approach to view information with redesigned apps, a new Smart Stack to show relevant widgets, new watch faces, and more.
Previous watchOS iterations, such as watchOS 9 last year, saw Apple announce fairly lacklustre improvements for the Apple Watch, with Apple completely switching things around with watchOS 10, bringing a full set of redesigned apps to provide more information at a glance, and new ways to navigate and quickly access content.
Apple Watch apps, including Weather, Stocks, Home, Maps, Messages, World Clock, and others, now utilise more of the Apple Watch display for more glanceable information. The Activity app on Apple Watch and the Fitness app on iPhone make tracking daily movement even easier with more details, improvements to sharing, a redesigned trophy case, and Apple Fitness+ trainer tips.
A new Smart Stack contains widgets that display timely information that adapts to the user’s context and can be revealed with a turn of the Digital Crown from any watch face. For example, at the beginning of the day, Weather will show the forecast, or, when traveling, the Smart Stack will show boarding passes from Wallet.
Control Center is now accessible using the side button, making it easy to quickly open it at any time, over any app. A double-click of the Digital Crown reverts back to any apps used recently.
“watchOS is the world’s most advanced wearable operating system, and it has redefined how people all over the world think of what a watch can do,” said Kevin Lynch, Apple’s vice president of Technology. “watchOS 10 is a major milestone and an energising new approach for Apple Watch, introducing a fresh new design for quickly viewing information, delightful new watch faces, new features for cyclists and hikers, and important tools for health.”
watchOS 10 introduces two new awatch faces: Palette and Snoopy. The Palette face depicts time in a wide variety of colours using three distinct overlapping layers, and as the time changes, the colours on the display also shift.
Additionally, the comic strip Peanuts comes to Apple Watch with a new watch face featuring Snoopy and Woodstock. The characters interact and play with the watch hands, react to the weather conditions in the area, and even get active when the user does a workout.
watchOS 10 includes several other notable new features including NameDrop that allows users to share contact information by bringing Apple Watch close to someone else’s iPhone. Apple Watch users can also use NameDrop by tapping the Share button in My Card in the Contacts app, or by tapping the My Card watch face complication, and then bringing Apple Watch face to face with someone else’s Apple Watch.