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WatchOS 4: The latest features in Apple’s new watchOS

Apple just revealed the new watchOS 4 at WWDC 2017, launching several new features for owners of the Apple Watch and Watch Series 2. Here are the biggest and best Apple watchOS 4 features that Apple unveiled today.

Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) 2017 is not just about phones, tablets, laptops or even Apple TV this year. Wearables get a notable look in too, as watchOS gets yet another upgrade, to its fourth iteration.

So what can you expect your Apple Watch to start doing once it’s updated to watchOS 4?

Once again this watchOS update should make your investment in Apple’s ecosystem even more worthwhile, as the Watch evolves to control even more of your life via HomeKit, AirPod connections and more.

Here’s what watchOS 4, which launched at WWDC in June is bringing to the table when it hits your wrist around September time – possibly along with the Apple Watch Series 3.

Already own an Apple Watch? Check out our full tips and tricks guide and complete watchOS 3 guide

watchOS 4 screenshots
Principle new features coming with watchOS 4

Principle new features coming with watchOS 4

 

watchOS 4 best features: Hyper health tracking

Staying healthy and keeping fit isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon and Apple has taken this truth to heart with watchOS 4, starting with new, more frequent motivational notifications, challenges and celebrations.

With watchOS 4 your Apple Watch will more closely monitor your progress towards closing those all-important rings and offer more in-depth and varied insight into how close you are to achieving your next goal or milestone. This also includes timely motivation when you’ve slowed down or at points when your watch detects that you could squeeze in a few extra steps to reach that next target.

Monthly challenges are being instated to offer more consistent workout sessions over longer periods of time with progress reports comparing one month to the next whilst achievements will appear all the more appealing with new animations when closing a ring or reaching a goal.

watchOS 4 best features: Wicked workouts

Apple’s making it easier to spend less time fiddling with your wrist and more time actually working up a sweat with Quick Start, which lets you jump into a workout with a single tap from your main watch face and similarly, your Apple Watch will automatically start tracking your swim data when it detects you flailing about in the wet stuff, no fiddling required.

Your Watch will soon be able to understand the broad range of HIIT (high-intensity interval training) activities out there under a single activity type and the company is working with some of the biggest names in connected gym equipment (Cybex, Matrix and TechnoGym to name a few) so that the data accumulated from the machines you work out on in the gym and the data being logged from your Apple Watch will sync up too, for more accurate fitness tracking.

The cherry on top will be the ability to quickly switch from tracking one workout type to another; great for triathletes in the making.

watchOS 4 best features: Fresh new faces

Apple kicked off the watchOS segment of its keynote by introducing us to three new first-party watch faces. The most powerful is unquestionably the new Siri watch face, which places the information you typically turn to your digital assistant for in one place on your wrist. It also adapts and changes what’s displayed based on your location or time of day.

Next up is the Kaleidoscope watch face, which offers an ever-changing pattern that can colour itself based on the tones found in your iPhone’s wallpaper. Lastly, iconic characters from Disney’s Toy Story are making their way to your wrist, with Woody, Buzz and Jessie all appearing and animating depending on how you’re interacting with your watch.

You can find out more about watchOS 4’s new watch faces here.

watchOS 4 best features: More Music

All of the experience offered up by Apple Music will soon more readily synchronise with your wrist. So, whether you want to store more tunes locally on your watch or simply pick up where you left off from your phone on that killer album or playlist, with watchOS 4 you’ll be able to.

watchOS 4 best features: Peer to peer Apple Pay

As part of Apple’s ongoing dominion over the realm of mobile-based contactless payments, the company revealed that Apple Pay functionality was going peer to peer so you can send money to your friends directly using the service. Just as on the forthcoming release of iOS 11 it manifests itself within Messages and the same is true of watchOS 4. You can also ask Siri to send money to your friends on your behalf.

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