Because so many of Apple’s devices are essentially touchscreens that rely on software, the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference is when we really see all the new features and functionality coming to the hardware, including the Apple Watch and the new watchOS 9.
Many of the software updates coming to Apple’s popular wearable are designed to take better advantage of the larger screens introduced in recent models, but they also include improvements to its already impressive health and fitness tracking capabilities. of the Apple Watch.
Look at faces that take better advantage of bigger screens
The most obvious reason to upgrade to the latest version of watchOS year after year is the introduction of new watch faces to breathe new life into your wearable, as they can still only come from Apple itself. For watchOS 9, four new watch faces are on the way. These have been redesigned to better fill the device’s larger screen, including an astronomical watch face, a lunar calendar, and one that promises to celebrate the typography of watch faces and even allows users to interactively resize fonts by simply turning the dial. digital crown.
Improved training stats for runners
It didn’t take long for Apple to realize that fitness tracking would be the bread and butter of the Apple Watch, even if it’s been the great app for wearables since their first debut. For watchOS 9, the Apple Watch uses its accelerometer and gyroscope to track a runner’s shape, stride length, and ground contact time, and introduces the ability to specify heart rate zones, as well as distance and time intervals, with vibrating haptic feedback and voice alerts letting users know they hit a target and things need to change.
Long exclusively available for wearables, the Apple Watch’s Fitness app is finally coming to iOS and iPhone, leveraging the smartphone’s motion-sensing technology to track stats and performance (as long as an athlete is wearing it or wearing it). carrying the device).
More detailed sleep tracking
With watchOS 8, users could choose to wear their device at night to track their breathing rate during snooze and track whether their average night’s sleep increased or decreased from week to week. With watchOS 9 comes the added ability for the Apple Watch to detect and measure the different stages of sleep, including REM, core, deep sleep, and even when someone is awake.
Medication Reminders and Warnings of Bad Drug Interactions
If there was any doubt that Apple was all-in when it comes to treating the Apple Watch as a legitimate medical device, watchOS 9 will also introduce drug tracking. Users can physically scan the label of a medicine bottle with their iPhone’s camera, and it will be added and tracked via the iPhone Health app, with the Apple Watch providing reminders when to take medicine (including logging when you do). and possible conflicts between different types of medications you are currently taking. You can also share medication information with your loved ones.
Create new calendar events right on your watch
Apple Watch users who have opted for a mobile-connected model have even fewer reasons to reach for their iPhone or computer, as the Calendar app in watchOS 9 updates with the ability to create new events and appointments right on the watch, and a new Week View makes it easier to see what meetings or other responsibilities stand between you and a relaxing weekend.
This article has been updated since it was first published.
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