Here’s what WatchOS 2 can do for your Apple Watch (hands-on)

22 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

A More Useful Apple Watch? Newly Released WatchOS 2 Inches Forward.

Fortune is here to help you avoid similar hiccups—here’s what you need to know to update that Apple-branded wrist-worn computer of yours without any problems.

Since the Apple Watch first arrived, the year’s most hyped gadget has had a hard time shaking the reputation that it’s pretty, but just not that useful.Apple’s big software update to its Apple Watch operating system is finally available to download, technology news publication TechCrunch reported on Monday. The updated watchOS 2 lets coders build custom software programs for the Apple AAPL 1.67% Watch that use the watch’s sensors and hardware, like its microphone, heart-rate monitor and accelerometer, according to the website MacRumors.

Finally, press “Download and Install.” The software update has the usual performance upgrades as well as interesting new features, which you can read more about here. The update’s headline feature brings native apps to the Watch, allowing them to be run from the wrist rather than borrowing information from the phone. Coming five months after the watch’s debut, the update demonstrates the speed at which Apple is coming up with new ideas for what we can do with a wrist-top computer.

Complications are small little pieces of information that sit on the face – meaning that the Watch can show updates like sports scores without clicking into apps. I’ve been using the Watch OS 2 for a week and a half, and am happy to report Apple has made progress on my biggest problem with its watch—that it is just too slow. Launching Apple’s own apps such as stocks or weather from a glance screen now takes a bit less time than the seconds that used to painfully creep by.

Other new features include updates to Siri, support for third-party workouts, new communications tools like replying directly from email notifications, and a nightstand mode that lets it work as an alarm clock when it’s charging. None of these apps were available in time to test, but the arrival of this capability suggests we’ll soon see an improvement over the anemic third-party apps that launched with the watch in the spring.

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