Last week we broke down all the new features you can expect to see in iOS 13 at WWDC next month. However, iOS 13 will not be the only major update that was unveiled at the event. Read on when we edit some of the new features that come with Apple Watch with watchOS 6.
Sylvania HomeKit Light Strip
watchOS 6 release date |
Apple will offer its first look at watchOS 6 in just a few weeks at its Worldwide Developers Conference. From there we can expect a beta release on the same day for developers. Apple does not offer watchOS public beta, but everyone will be able to give watchOS 6 a trial when released to the public in September.
New look on faces + complications |
One of the most popular changes with every watchOS update is the addition of new clock faces. Apple has just added a new Pride face as part of watchOS 5.2.1, and watchOS 6 will feature even more new capabilities for Apple Watch users.
Bloomberg reports that Apple has a handful of new clock face designs that come with watchOS 6. A new Gradient face will allow a user to choose a color and have a gradient colored clock design based on the color. Two new clock faces, referred to as "X-Large", will display "jumbo numbers in different fonts and colors."
There is also a new "California" watch design in the works that mix Roman numerals with Arabic numerals for the look of a classic clock face design. The popular Solar Analog face will also be redesigned this year, while a new "Infograph Subdial" view will include "major complications as a stock market map or weather."
In addition to the new watch faces, Apple is suddenly planning new complications for watchOS 6. These new complications include those for audiobook playback, battery life for hearing aids, external noise targets and rain data.
Extended Apple Watch Authentication on Mac |
This new feature will thank both watchOS 6 and macOS 10.15. 9to5Mac reported earlier this year that macOS 10.15 will include enhanced integration with Apple Watch.
Apple Watch has long been supported to unlock a nearby Mac, but that authentication support is expected to expand with MacOS 10.15 and WatchOS 6 this year. Apple Watch users will be able to approve other operations on Mac other than simple locks.
Details remain a bit unclear, but it is possible that all authentication mechanisms currently relying on Touch ID on Mac could be approved by Apple Watch as well. There may also be a new interface on Apple Watch, similar to the Apple Pay interface, to confirm authentication on macOS.
App Store for watchOS |
One of the other new watchOS 6 features will apparently be a new App Store app right on the Apple Watch itself. Currently, the watchOS App Store is hidden in the Apple Watch app on iOS. With watchOS 6, however, users will access the watchOS App Store directly from the wrist.
Ideally, this should help spread the adoption of third-party watchOS 6 applications. Many watchOS users are unaware that watchOS App Store exists, and having to install applications through a paired iPhone is something of a stepping and overcomplicated process.
Other New Programs |
Bloomberg has also reported that watchOS 6 will work a handful of other new applications. Apple is said to schedule an Apple Watch book app focused on audio books. This will theoretically work similar to the Podcasts app, allowing users to download audiobooks and listen directly from their Apple Watch.
watchOS 6 is also expected to contain two new health programs: One called "Cycles" to track menstrual cycles and one called "Dose" for controlling pill dosing and reminders. Apple will also bring the Voice Memos app from iPhone to Apple with watchOS 6 so users can make quick wrist recordings.
Last but not least, watchOS 6 is expected to finally add a calculator app for Apple Watch,
Apple Watch users will probably have to wait a year before Apple adds native watch tracking functionality to watchOS. A February report suggested Apple employees have tested Apple Watch's garbage tracking for several months, with Apple targeting a release for 2020. While possible, the feature can be moved forward this year, 2020 seems a solid effort for now.
Meanwhile, if you want to track your sleep using your existing Apple Watch hardware and software, we have a detailed guide to doing just that.
watchOS 6 features list |
Although these are some of the features that have been rumored for watchOS 6, there are many other options. Be sure to check out Zac Hall's complete wish list for other possible watchOS 6 features. What do you hope to see in this year's Apple Watch update? Please let us know in the comments.
Subscribe to 9to5Mac on YouTube for more Apple news: