watchOS 6 should support direct-to-Apple Watch software updates

Posted:
in Apple Watch
Further signalling that the Apple Watch may become independent from iPhones later this year, current watchOS 6 betas appear to support direct OS updates -- with one catch.

watchOS 6


People must still accept terms and conditions on their iPhone, noted VentureBeat's Jeremy Horwitz. Nevertheless the process can be started directly from a Watch, where previously owners would have to launch the iOS Watch app to even see new software was available.

watchOS 6 is already slated to get standalone apps and a native App Store. With a few more changes it's conceivable that Watches could become completely independent of the iPhone, eliminating a major barrier to adoption.





To snag Android users however Apple would need to develop a new app for that platform that enables configuration, and most likely integration with Google's equivalent of HealthKit, Google Fit.

watchOS 6 is due to launch sometime this fall, probably in time for an Apple Watch Series 5.
«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,162member
    Being able to use an Watch without an iPhone may increase sales to those who want one but have a different brand phone. OTA updates plus stand alone app store sure make it look like that’s where Apple is headed.
    StrangeDayscaladanian
  • Reply 2 of 22
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,975member
    Personally, I'd just like to be able to pair my Apple Watch with my vehicle's bluetooth.
    Roger_FingasrazorpitStrangeDayscaladanianlolliver
  • Reply 3 of 22
    Soli said:
    Personally, I'd just like to be able to pair my Apple Watch with my vehicle's bluetooth.
    I happened to try this again just last week, no luck. I get the 6-digit code and can verify it on the Watch and my car but after that I get an “operation failed” notice on my car.

    I, too, would like to see this work. When I’m making a quick trip to the store, just a couple of miles away, I can use my Watch for Apple Pay and or to send a quick text if needed, etc. Being able to use it for calls and music would allow me to leave my phone at home.
    Solilolliver
  • Reply 4 of 22
    razorpitrazorpit Posts: 934member
    I happened to try this again just last week, no luck. I get the 6-digit code and can verify it on the Watch and my car but after that I get an “operation failed” notice on my car.

    I, too, would like to see this work. When I’m making a quick trip to the store, just a couple of miles away, I can use my Watch for Apple Pay and or to send a quick text if needed, etc. Being able to use it for calls and music would allow me to leave my phone at home.

    That's a lot of battery juice you're talking about. Next thing you would be hearing from the blogs is that AppleWatch only lasts X hours. While it would be super cool, I think we're a long way from that happening. Maybe with a cellular radio in the car to do the "heavy lifting"?
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 5 of 22
    topdragtopdrag Posts: 26member
    The release notes for watchOS 6 Beta 2 states that beta 2 fixes where the terms and conditions don't appear properly on the watch when installing through settings on the watch itself. So the "One catch" was just a bug that has been resolved in this update. 

    Sometimes it's a good thing to read the release notes before installing software, and rushing out articles. ;) 
    applesnorangescaladanianlolliver
  • Reply 6 of 22
    Soli said:
    Personally, I'd just like to be able to pair my Apple Watch with my vehicle's bluetooth.
    I happened to try this again just last week, no luck. I get the 6-digit code and can verify it on the Watch and my car but after that I get an “operation failed” notice on my car.

    I, too, would like to see this work. When I’m making a quick trip to the store, just a couple of miles away, I can use my Watch for Apple Pay and or to send a quick text if needed, etc. Being able to use it for calls and music would allow me to leave my phone at home.
    I have had luck in the past with an older Mini, but oddly not since watchOS 5.
    caladanian
  • Reply 7 of 22
    Soli said:
    Personally, I'd just like to be able to pair my Apple Watch with my vehicle's bluetooth.
    I happened to try this again just last week, no luck. I get the 6-digit code and can verify it on the Watch and my car but after that I get an “operation failed” notice on my car.

    I, too, would like to see this work. When I’m making a quick trip to the store, just a couple of miles away, I can use my Watch for Apple Pay and or to send a quick text if needed, etc. Being able to use it for calls and music would allow me to leave my phone at home.
    I have had luck in the past with an older Mini, but oddly not since watchOS 5.
    I have tried on watchOS 4 and watchOS 5 in both of our vehicles with no success. 

    razorpit said:
    That's a lot of battery juice you're talking about. Next thing you would be hearing from the blogs is that AppleWatch only lasts X hours. While it would be super cool, I think we're a long way from that happening. Maybe with a cellular radio in the car to do the "heavy lifting"?

     Why would it take more battery juice than connecting to Bluetooth headphones? I do that all the time, listening to music, making calls and sending texts while far away from my phone. Yes, the battery percentage drops a lot faster that way but why would it drop more connecting to the car? 
    GeorgeBMaccaladanianbonoboblolliver
  • Reply 8 of 22
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,743member
    My feeling about this is that Apple has been moving in this direction for at least a year, and possibly two. With watchOS 6, it looks to me that Apple is going further than just allowing us to have more independence from the iPhone. I think that we may be surprised, in the September release of new watch, iPhone and possibly iPad products, an announcement that now, the Watch was available to everyone, because Apple wants to get the health benefits of the Watch to as many people as possible.

    we have to remember that often, while introducing a new iOS version, we don’t get to see the features that will be different, and specific to a new model of hardware. Often, that’s hidden until that new model is introduced.

    apple’s big problem here is the security model they use, which is tied to the Secure Enclave of the iPhone. But if Apple’s new SoC for the watch includes enough security on its own, it could be completely decoupled. The problem being that Android has no similar hardware enclave that Apple could use for themselves, and control. I believe that’s been the stumbling block here. If Apple could work around that, and remember that medical data needs to meet high security levels, then there should be no reason why the watch could not be offered to those not using an Apple phone. The only remaining problem would be a secure health app on the Android phone. If they can solve that, or somehow avoid it, then needing to own an iPhone would no longer hold Watch sales down. I have some friends who have Android (hard to believe, I know), who have told me, particularly after my own health emergency the watch notified me to, that they would buy the Watch if they didn’t also have to buy an iPhone.
    caladanian
  • Reply 9 of 22
    Downloads requires WiFi same as iPhones and iPads...

    Not a surprise, but still pathetic.

    Rolling the clock forward on manual works for app downloads (workaround) but for security/OS updates still SOL.

    Setting another idevice as a hotspot (WiFi) no longer is practical.  After trying to do so for the last 300MB update it projected 16+ hours to download, I have up after 30min.

    Apple, don’t propagate your stupidity.  Fix with iOS 13...



    caladanian
  • Reply 10 of 22
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,975member
    Soli said:
    Personally, I'd just like to be able to pair my Apple Watch with my vehicle's bluetooth.
    I happened to try this again just last week, no luck. I get the 6-digit code and can verify it on the Watch and my car but after that I get an “operation failed” notice on my car.

    I, too, would like to see this work. When I’m making a quick trip to the store, just a couple of miles away, I can use my Watch for Apple Pay and or to send a quick text if needed, etc. Being able to use it for calls and music would allow me to leave my phone at home.
    That's pretty much my use case, too. I love CarPlay and use that with my iPhone most of the time, but for quick trips I may not even take my iPhone.

    I'm not even asking for wireless CarPlay via the Apple Watch… yet. :D
    caladanianlolliver
  • Reply 11 of 22
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,705member
    This is a step ahead -- but I doubt it will be full independence.

    We use the iPhone for both updates and to maintain settings.  While it wouldn't be impossible to port those functions to Apple Watch, they are simpler to maintain on the larger iPhone screen. 

    Plus, non-GPS and non-Cellular watches require the iPhone for those functions as well.   And, health parameters from the watch are stored in the iPhone's Health App from all watches.
    And, then you get to the shared phone number on LTE watches.


  • Reply 12 of 22
    FolioFolio Posts: 567member
    That's what I thought too, @melgross. Maybe in longterm. But now you consider: 1. applewatch still steep growth curve 2. Watch is huge differentiator for Apple in a maturing smartphone market. 3. Watch is sticky, prevents iOS defections. 4. Watch doesn't drive extra service $$$ like say an iPad (so less incentive to give it to Android users). But certainly this is a step in optionality, in line with other trends to widening user base. Cupertino has all the data to decide, so hardly something for us to loose sleep over.
  • Reply 13 of 22
    wiseywisey Posts: 25member
    The iPad should be able to connect to Apple Watch.  At present, you cannot connect to or control an Apple Watch through your iPad like you would using an iPhone.  I currently carry an Apple Watch, an iPhone XR, an iPad Pro 11”, and a MacBook Pro.  That is too much.  If I could use the iPad and Apple Watch together and relegate the MacBook to a desk and ditch the iPhone.  
  • Reply 14 of 22
    matrix077matrix077 Posts: 719member
    This is a step ahead -- but I doubt it will be full independence.

    We use the iPhone for both updates and to maintain settings.  While it wouldn't be impossible to port those functions to Apple Watch, they are simpler to maintain on the larger iPhone screen. 

    Plus, non-GPS and non-Cellular watches require the iPhone for those functions as well.   And, health parameters from the watch are stored in the iPhone's Health App from all watches.
    And, then you get to the shared phone number on LTE watches.


    Settings is easily duplicated to the watch itself.
    Health can be on iCloud so you can access it anywhere (even iPad with iPadOS)
    Call number can be independent now that the watch is independent so you can buy the watch only, no need for a phone. This would be ideal for senior people who don’t have iPhone. 

    edited June 18
  • Reply 15 of 22
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,999member
    Downloads requires WiFi same as iPhones and iPads...

    Not a surprise, but still pathetic.

    Rolling the clock forward on manual works for app downloads (workaround) but for security/OS updates still SOL.

    Setting another idevice as a hotspot (WiFi) no longer is practical.  After trying to do so for the last 300MB update it projected 16+ hours to download, I have up after 30min.

    Apple, don’t propagate your stupidity.  Fix with iOS 13...
    What on earth are you talking about? It’s “pathetic” that upgrading your Watch’s OS requires wifi? As rare an event as this is? Please, man. You need to find better things to whine about. 
    macgui
  • Reply 16 of 22
    macguimacgui Posts: 1,310member
    Downloads requires WiFi same as iPhones and iPads...

    Not a surprise, but still pathetic.

    blahblahwhine...
    A truly pathetic use of 'pathetic'.
    GeorgeBMacStrangeDays
  • Reply 17 of 22
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,705member
    wisey said:
    The iPad should be able to connect to Apple Watch.  At present, you cannot connect to or control an Apple Watch through your iPad like you would using an iPhone.  I currently carry an Apple Watch, an iPhone XR, an iPad Pro 11”, and a MacBook Pro.  That is too much.  If I could use the iPad and Apple Watch together and relegate the MacBook to a desk and ditch the iPhone.  
    That's true.  The Apple Watch only connects to the iPhone.
    Part of the reason for that, I suspect is that the Health App -- which is critical to Apple Watch's ability to track exercise and such -- doesn't run on iPad.   It should.   But it doesn't.   Just iPhone.   This needs to be fixed.
    edited June 19 StrangeDays
  • Reply 18 of 22
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,705member
    matrix077 said:
    This is a step ahead -- but I doubt it will be full independence.

    We use the iPhone for both updates and to maintain settings.  While it wouldn't be impossible to port those functions to Apple Watch, they are simpler to maintain on the larger iPhone screen. 

    Plus, non-GPS and non-Cellular watches require the iPhone for those functions as well.   And, health parameters from the watch are stored in the iPhone's Health App from all watches.
    And, then you get to the shared phone number on LTE watches.


    Settings is easily duplicated to the watch itself.
    Health can be on iCloud so you can access it anywhere (even iPad with iPadOS)
    Call number can be independent now that the watch is independent so you can buy the watch only, no need for a phone. This would be ideal for senior people who don’t have iPhone. 

    Yes, as I said, settings could be put on the watch itself -- but they would be far more difficult to use and maintain.
    Health (data) is already on iCloud.

    As for making the Watch an independent cell phone number, that has a lot of ramifications involving carriers.

    Can the watch be made a totally independent, stand-alone device?   Yes, most probably.
    SHOULD it be made a totally independent, stand-alone device?   Probably not.
    edited June 19
  • Reply 19 of 22
    matrix077matrix077 Posts: 719member
    matrix077 said:
    This is a step ahead -- but I doubt it will be full independence.

    We use the iPhone for both updates and to maintain settings.  While it wouldn't be impossible to port those functions to Apple Watch, they are simpler to maintain on the larger iPhone screen. 

    Plus, non-GPS and non-Cellular watches require the iPhone for those functions as well.   And, health parameters from the watch are stored in the iPhone's Health App from all watches.
    And, then you get to the shared phone number on LTE watches.


    Settings is easily duplicated to the watch itself.
    Health can be on iCloud so you can access it anywhere (even iPad with iPadOS)
    Call number can be independent now that the watch is independent so you can buy the watch only, no need for a phone. This would be ideal for senior people who don’t have iPhone. 

    Yes, as I said, settings could be put on the watch itself -- but they would be far more difficult to use and maintain.
    Health (data) is already on iCloud.

    As for making the Watch an independent cell phone number, that has a lot of ramifications involving carriers.

    Can the watch be made a totally independent, stand-alone device?   Yes, most probably.
    SHOULD it be made a totally independent, stand-alone device?   Probably not.
    I meant iCloud.com. 

    Watch already have it’s own number, it’s just now been linked with iPhone. It can be de-linked easily.  
  • Reply 20 of 22
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,743member
    Downloads requires WiFi same as iPhones and iPads...

    Not a surprise, but still pathetic.

    Rolling the clock forward on manual works for app downloads (workaround) but for security/OS updates still SOL.

    Setting another idevice as a hotspot (WiFi) no longer is practical.  After trying to do so for the last 300MB update it projected 16+ hours to download, I have up after 30min.

    Apple, don’t propagate your stupidity.  Fix with iOS 13...



    iPhones and iPads don’t require WiFi for downloads. Or are you saying that you have to on the same WiFi network? Either way, it makes no sense.
Sign In or Register to comment.