WatchOS 2: Understanding the Update


Recently, at WWDC 2015 keynote, Apple announced the upcoming release of the watchOS 2. This will be the next version of the Apple Watch’s operating system. Despite the fact that the Apple Watch only launched a couple of months ago, this upcoming update will bring forth many new features.


WatchKit will be seeing a huge update with the release of the watchOS 2. For those who don’t know, WatchKit is an application developers use to create apps for the watch. In the upcoming update, WatchKit apps will be able to run natively. This means they will not have to communicate with the iPhone in order to get all of their information. WatchKit apps will also have full access to the watch’s hardware components and sensors.

New Watch Faces:

With the release of watchOS 2, users will have new options for their Watch faces’ background. The first option is the Photo face. This option will allow users to set their background as a photo from their photo app. The second option is a Photo Album face. This option allows the user to set an album as their background. The background will cycle through the photos in your album each time the watch is turned on. The final option is the Time-Lapse faces. This option will display time lapses from the following locations:

  • New York
  • London
  • Mack Lake
  • Shanghai
  • Hong Kong

Time Travel:

This feature allows the user to spin the digital crown in order to see what the next several hours hold. As you spin the digital crown, you will see all your complications. For example, if your weather complication is enabled, you will see what the weather will be like in a few hours as you spin the digital crown.

Other new features include:

Nightstand Mode – Allows the user to display the time, date, and alarm by simply touching the screen. When an alarm sounds in nightstand mode, the digital crown will act as a snooze button.

Improved Communication – The friends feature can now support more than the previous cap of 12 friends.

Health and Fitness Improvements – Workouts can now be activated from Siri. There is also an array of new achievements to unlock.

Improved Apple Pay – Apple Pay on the watch now supports store cards, along with a variety of new retailers such as Dunkin’ Donuts, Kohl’s, and Walmart.

Maps App Improvement – The Maps app now has the ability to add transit directions.

The watchOS 2 is greatly improving the Apple Watch. The latest update is bringing forth many needed features. With the WatchKit application giving developers more access to the watch, one can only expect to see many more improvements over time.

Other improvements such as new watch faces and the “Time Travel” feature are shaping watchOS 2 into a great update. The upcoming update is now available as a developer beta. And it is expected to be released to the public this fall.