How workout and fitness get better with watchOS 7 and iOS 14

Posted:
in Apple Watch
Everyone from complete fitness junkies to the most casual of exerciser will appreciate the new workout and fitness features coming as part of watchOS 7, as well as with iOS 14.

New large complication face in watchOS 7
New large complication face in watchOS 7


Apple spent a considerable amount of time at its WWDC keynote talking about its new fitness features coming this year, and for good reason. There are changes -- both big and small -- that users will clearly see the moment they update their Apple Watch to watchOS 7. But what Apple discussed far less was how the changes aren't just on Apple Watch, there are ones coming to the iPhone side as well.




iOS 14

Apple Watch users have had the ability to view their Apple Watch fitness information on their iPhone for a while in the Activity app. This year, Apple is changing the name of the app to "Fitness," which is more encompassing of both the activity as well as the workout data. Possibly confusingly, however, Activity and Workouts are still two separate apps on the Apple Watch.

Fitness widget in iOS 14
Fitness widget in iOS 14


The fitness and activity data can now also be displayed in the new widgets coming to iOS 14. The Fitness Activity widget comes in both small, and medium sizes. The smaller size shows your rings, as well as your progress for each of the three goals. Medium shows that same data, as well as graphs of your progress throughout the day.

Redesigned Summary tab in the Fitness app
Redesigned Summary tab in the Fitness app


Jumping into the new Fitness app, the number of tabs has been greatly reduced, going from five individual tabs to only two. Sharing remains on its own, but everything else has been wrapped up nearly into the new Summary tab. This shows your daily goals and progress at the top, followed by your most recent workouts. There's also a record of trends, plus awards.

Each of these subcategories of the Summary tab can be tapped into to see additional information. No real new information is presented here, it is just more conveniently organized compared to before.

Sharing tab in the Fitness app
Sharing tab in the Fitness app


Then the Sharing tab has an updated Volt green color for buttons. There is a sort feature towards the top, and the previous human avatar for activity sharing was replaced by a modified "share" icon.

Apple Watch and watchOS 7

Activity app in watchOS 7
Activity app in watchOS 7


Moving to the Apple Watch, there are a few more changes.

First, we see the new X-Large complication watch face. It displays any complication extra-large on the display, with the clock just above it. This isn't specific to activities or workouts but it does allow you to show your activity rings front and center when you check your watch.

Weekly summary and goal change buttons in watchOS 7 Activity app
Weekly summary and goal change buttons in watchOS 7 Activity app


If we go to the Activity app, we don't see many changes. When scrolled to the bottom there are new buttons for weekly summary as well as to change the Move goal. These functions were here before, but they used to be accessed via Force Touch. Force Touch is going away in watchOS 7, though so Apple had to move these buttons elsewhere. In this case, the bottom of the Activity app's view.

New workout types coming to watchOS 7
New workout types coming to watchOS 7


Then there are Workouts, which is perhaps where most users will spend most of their time using these apps. Users gain four new or revamped workouts with watchOS 7 -- Core Training, Functional Strength Training, Dance, and Cooldown. Core Training existed before, but this new version has been updated to be more accurate.

Dance was particularly difficult for Apple to nail down. It worked hard to get accurate calorie counts for a number of different dance types such as hip-hop, Bollywood, Latin, and cardio types. Dance is now broken into two categories for social dancing as well as fitness dancing.

Apple will be releasing iOS 14 and watchOS 7 this fall when users will be able to take all these new workout and fitness features for a spin. And that's alongside the myriad new features including hand-washing function, and sleep tracking one.



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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 9
    I installed the public beta and the fitness app is a complete train wreck. The attempt to consolidate the tabs has dropped useful features and made betting to data clunky as all hell. 
  • Reply 2 of 9
    Andrew_OSUAndrew_OSU Posts: 467member, editor
    I installed the public beta and the fitness app is a complete train wreck. The attempt to consolidate the tabs has dropped useful features and made betting to data clunky as all hell. 
    What features are missing?
  • Reply 3 of 9
    I installed the public beta and the fitness app is a complete train wreck. The attempt to consolidate the tabs has dropped useful features and made betting to data clunky as all hell. 
    What features are missing?
    The month over month comparison of workout data, you now have to scroll through all the workouts in a month to look at the previous month. The ability to quickly look at your daily stats, actually there is just a bit of having to go in and out of things to get what used to be easy snapshots on the tabs. I'm starting to think they should have just rolled into health at this point. 
  • Reply 4 of 9
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 856member
    I installed the public beta and the fitness app is a complete train wreck. The attempt to consolidate the tabs has dropped useful features and made betting to data clunky as all hell. 
    What features are missing?
    The month over month comparison of workout data, you now have to scroll through all the workouts in a month to look at the previous month. The ability to quickly look at your daily stats, actually there is just a bit of having to go in and out of things to get what used to be easy snapshots on the tabs. I'm starting to think they should have just rolled into health at this point. 
    Yup, I found that annoying as well. Thankfully, we’re still in beta, so maybe they will fix it and make the monthly view the way it was if enough people complain. 
    jony0
  • Reply 5 of 9
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    Japhey said:
    I installed the public beta and the fitness app is a complete train wreck. The attempt to consolidate the tabs has dropped useful features and made betting to data clunky as all hell. 
    What features are missing?
    The month over month comparison of workout data, you now have to scroll through all the workouts in a month to look at the previous month. The ability to quickly look at your daily stats, actually there is just a bit of having to go in and out of things to get what used to be easy snapshots on the tabs. I'm starting to think they should have just rolled into health at this point. 
    Yup, I found that annoying as well. Thankfully, we’re still in beta, so maybe they will fix it and make the monthly view the way it was if enough people complain. 
    Have you reported it?
    Japhey
  • Reply 6 of 9
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member

    I installed the public beta and the fitness app is a complete train wreck. The attempt to consolidate the tabs has dropped useful features and made betting to data clunky as all hell. 
    What features are missing?
    The month over month comparison of workout data, you now have to scroll through all the workouts in a month to look at the previous month. The ability to quickly look at your daily stats, actually there is just a bit of having to go in and out of things to get what used to be easy snapshots on the tabs. I'm starting to think they should have just rolled into health at this point. 
    Have you reported it?
  • Reply 7 of 9
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 856member
    Rayz2016 said:
    Japhey said:
    I installed the public beta and the fitness app is a complete train wreck. The attempt to consolidate the tabs has dropped useful features and made betting to data clunky as all hell. 
    What features are missing?
    The month over month comparison of workout data, you now have to scroll through all the workouts in a month to look at the previous month. The ability to quickly look at your daily stats, actually there is just a bit of having to go in and out of things to get what used to be easy snapshots on the tabs. I'm starting to think they should have just rolled into health at this point. 
    Yup, I found that annoying as well. Thankfully, we’re still in beta, so maybe they will fix it and make the monthly view the way it was if enough people complain. 
    Have you reported it?
    Yes. 
  • Reply 8 of 9
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 10,302member
    That all gets a big shrug from me....

    What Apple has failed to do over the past years is make the workout app (and the health app in general) anything but a black hole that sucks in data and makes it disappear.
    Biggest among those deficiencies are the worthless little graphs that display the data:
    1)  The graphs are too small to glean anything meaningful from them.   For example, you can't display any health data on a bigger screen (like an iPad), nor can you switch to landscape -- you're stuck with a tiny iPhone screen in portrait mode.  The only graph the workout app provides is heart rate and that is scrunched down so small it is worthless as an analytic and not much more than a pretty picture.  And often, the Y axis is often not adjusted for the actual data:   my blood pressure seldom goes above 100 -- yet the graph runs from 50 - 200.   So, my numbers are scrunched in down at the bottom 1/3 of the graph.   A 7th grader can do better than that!

    2)  A lot of analytics are missing:   after a run I like to see how my body performed throughout the run not just averages for the whole run.   Other apps provide detailed stats on each lap or interval (usually mile or kilometer) on such things as pace, heart rate, climb, steps per minute, etc...  In addition, they provide detailed, usable graphs (even on an iPhone!) of things like heart rate, elevation, pace, etc...

    i will of course, install the update.  I'm just glad I don't have to pay for it.
  • Reply 9 of 9
    I hate the design of both the current and the iOS14 apps. It’s incredibly hard to find useful information there, and a simple thing like retroactively adding or editing a workout is a cumbersome process.
    I keep forgetting to select my activity on the watch before my work out, so I want it to add or edit retroactively, and I want Apple Watch to figure out the calorie burn which for some reason I need to do manually at that point.

    I also like Apple Watch to be smarter about suggesting when to start or stop a workout. E.g suggesting AND reminding me to start the workout based on the location I’m at (e.g the gym), and it should suggest to stop once I get in my car (when Bluetooth jumps back to my car could be a trigger).
    GeorgeBMacurahara
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