Three months after the WWDC21 keynote, on September 20, watchOS 8 was released after receiving its first preview. The Always-On Display API for developers, a new Mindfulness app, and Find My integration are all part of the Apple Watch software’s focus on health and well-being features. Here is all the information on Apple’s most recent watchOS update.
New features in watchOS 8
Apple added a few features with the release of watchOS 7 in 2020, including a new sleep-tracking app, more workouts, and handwashing detection.
The ability for developers to provide more than one complication per app on Watch Face was one of the features praised in this update. As an illustration, Glow Baby can show a variety of complications that enable parents to monitor bottle-feeding, breastfeeding, pumping statistics, and nap times, while Dawn Patrol can display tide, wind speed, and water temperature from a preferred surfing location.
Apple has improved its internal watchOS update development process over time, making adding and removing new features simpler for the company. As a result, the business can remove features that aren’t ready for prime time, making each annual release more stable. It’s time to get acquainted with watchOS 8’s new features.
New Watch Faces, Photos focus, and new workouts
In watchOS 8, two new Watch Faces are available: World Timer, which displays time zones from around the world, and Portraits, which allows users to choose a Portrait photo taken on their iPhones and add it as their main Watch Face.
With new memories added every day, a new mosaic grid view, and the ability to quickly share photos via Messages and Mail, Apple is also putting a lot of effort into the Photos app.
Apple is also introducing a new Pilates workout and Tai Chi practice with watchOS 8. In this update, there will be an additional guest trainer and an Artist Spotlight.
Artist Spotlight offers workout playlists with music from a single artist, including Lady Gaga, Keith Urban, Alicia Keys, and Jennifer Lopez. Trainer Jeanette Jenkins is coming to Apple Fitness+.
Home and Wallet features with watchOS 8
Your home and the Apple Watch are better connected. When your connected doorbell rings with watchOS 8, you might see options to unlock the door or turn on the entry lights. Additionally, watchOS 8 has a new Camera room and can predict which scenes you’ll use the most based on the time of day.
The Wallet app is also expanding and improving. The app will also store your home key and ID cards in addition to your car keys. With hotel keys and employment credentials, this feature will also function.
An upcoming watchOS 8 update will include both of these features.
Focus, Mindfulness, and Sleep
Focus is one of the most significant features in these update cycles. Distractions can be filtered out using this feature. For instance, you can configure the Watch app so that “Fitness Focus” is activated each time you begin a workout, preventing you from receiving notifications you don’t want.
Additionally, the Breath app has been updated and this app is now called Mindfulness. By concentrating on a brief, thought-provoking theme, the new Reflect feature aids in the development of a meditation practise.
With watchOS 8, the Sleep app now tracks your trends for even more health metrics to better see changes in your health over time. It also knows your sleeping respiratory rate.
Additional features in watchOS 8
With watchOS 8, the Apple Watch will get a tonne more features:
Loss and Recovery: Use Find Devices, which includes Items, Devices, and People, to find lost Apple devices.
With AssistiveTouch: integrated motion sensors can be used to answer phone calls, move an on-screen pointer, or even open a menu of options.
New transit card support for some regions has improved Family Setup features, making it simpler for family members to use the bus or train. Accounts for Google Calendar and Mail are also supported. Additionally, kids’ hiking workout metrics are now validated.
Always-On Display: With the Always-On display, you can see the time without having to raise your wrist or wake up your watch. Additionally, it now functions with many more apps, such as Alarms, Maps, Stopwatch, and your preferred third-party apps.
New Weather and Contacts apps: On Contacts, you can browse, add, or edit contacts quickly. The severe weather notifications feature and a new icon for the Weather app. Receive alerts about the upcoming rain and see how much it is raining.
Sound controls: Similar to the iPhone and iPad, Control Center lets you view the current headphone audio levels while you’re watching or listening to media.
Set several timers simultaneously: For the rice, please. One more for the vegetables. Of course, don’t overlook what’s cooking on the grill. Use Siri to assign labels to each of the timers you start at once.
Workout integration with Siri: In watchOS 8, a new Voice Feedback option is available. Users can simply hear sporadic checkpoints while exercising through their headphones.
watchOS 8 was released on September 20, 2017. Two new Watch Faces are available: World Timer and Portraits, which displays time zones from around the world. The Always-On Display API for developers, a new Mindfulness app, and Find My integration are all part of watchOS 8. The Breath app has been updated and is now called Mindfulness. By concentrating on a brief, thought-provoking theme, the new Reflect feature aids in the development of a meditation practice.
The Wallet app will also store your home key and ID cards and your car keys. Always-On Display lets you see the time without having to raise your wrist or wake up your watch. New transit card support makes it easier for family members to use public transportation. Control Center lets you view the current headphone audio levels while watching or listening to media.