Apple debuts watchOS 8, coming to the Apple Watch in the fall

Posted:
in Apple Watch edited June 22
Apple has announced the upcoming operating system update to the Apple Watch called watchOS 8.

watchOS 8 coming to Apple Watch
watchOS 8 coming to Apple Watch


Apple held its WWDC keynote address on Monday and revealed its latest operating system updates to all of its platforms. Many features focus on social experiences, including those added to watchOS 8.

"Apple Watch is the most loved watch in the world, keeping users healthy, active, and connected," said Kevin Lynch, Apple's vice president of Technology. "With watchOS 8, we're bringing more convenient access to places users live, work, and visit with significant updates to Home and Wallet, expanding support for both physical and mental well-being, and enabling richer personal connections with the new Portraits face and updates to Messages."

Apple Watch app updates

Health and mindfulness

The Breath app is turning into the Mindfulness app on Apple Watch. Also, Apple added a new animation to the Breath screen during the exercise.

Mindfulness app with Breathe
Mindfulness app with Breathe


A new session called "Reflect" is also included in the Mindfulness app. Each Reflect session welcomes the user with a thoughtful notion to consider during the meditative practice.

The Sleep app now tracks respiratory rate. This health metric will aid users in determining the quality of a night's sleep.

Workouts and Fitness+

Apple has added two new workouts to the Fitness app -- Tai Chi and Pilates. These workouts are also featured in new Apple Fitness+ sessions available to users this fall.

Apple says these new workout types are accompanied by custom-built heart rate and motion algorithms to provide users with accurate metrics.

Photos and Portrait watch face

Apple added a new Portrait watch face in watchOS 8
Apple added a new Portrait watch face in watchOS 8


The Photos app has a new iPhone-like design with a mosaic layout, memories, and featured photos. Users can navigate the app with the Digital Crown and select images with a tap. The share sheet in Photos is also improved, enabling users to share an image via iMessage or Mail.

The Portrait watch face uses the depth information found in portrait photos to create a layered effect. The data falls around the person's image to highlight the subject.

Messages and Contacts

When sending a message, you'll be able to control the cursor with the Digital Crown. Apple has also added a gif search
within the Messages app.

The Contacts app on Apple Watch enables users to browse, add, and edit contacts right from the wrist.

Home app

Accessories and scenes are more accessible than ever with suggested scenes and a per-room control. Users will be able to view HomeKit connected cameras on their wrist.

The Intercom function is now clearly displayed at the top of the app. Users can send Intercoms to specific rooms or HomePods.

Follow all the details of WWDC 2021 with the comprehensive AppleInsider coverage of the whole week-long event from June 7 through June 11, including details of all the new launches and updates.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    igud71igud71 Posts: 4member

    What a disappointment. They slept all the year doing nothing for watchOS. This is watchOS 7.5.1.  :o

    They are lucky that competition is practicaly nonexistent. So Apple can do useless things with Apple watchOS.

    In the world exist people which are not obsessed with fitness, meditation. We love nice looking things with attention to details.

    Verdict:

    Hardware 9

    Software 3

    edited June 7 williamlondon
  • Reply 2 of 8
    amarkapamarkap Posts: 64member
    igud71 said:

    What a disappointment. They slept all the year doing nothing for watchOS. This is watchOS 7.5.1.  :o

    They are lucky that competition is practicaly nonexistent. So Apple can do useless things with Apple watchOS.

    In the world exist people which are not obsessed with fitness, meditation. We love nice looking things with attention to details.

    Verdict:

    Hardware 9

    Software 3

    So you love nice looking things with attention to details....then you already have it with your Apple Watch.  Why do you care about Watch OS 8 upgrade being so minor this year?  To be honest our Apple Watches already do more than anyone thought it could do...they really don’t need anything more at this point.  I mean Apple will always surprise us...but we don’t need a killer upgrade every year.
    roundaboutnowpatchythepiratemuthuk_vanalingamRayz2016williamlondonwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 3 of 8
    JapheyJaphey Posts: 739member
    amarkap said:
    igud71 said:

    What a disappointment. They slept all the year doing nothing for watchOS. This is watchOS 7.5.1.  :o

    They are lucky that competition is practicaly nonexistent. So Apple can do useless things with Apple watchOS.

    In the world exist people which are not obsessed with fitness, meditation. We love nice looking things with attention to details.

    Verdict:

    Hardware 9

    Software 3

    So you love nice looking things with attention to details....then you already have it with your Apple Watch.  Why do you care about Watch OS 8 upgrade being so minor this year?  To be honest our Apple Watches already do more than anyone thought it could do...they really don’t need anything more at this point.  I mean Apple will always surprise us...but we don’t need a killer upgrade every year.
    I don’t know, that Portal app that Craig was using might be cool. Maybe by Series 25   
    Rayz2016williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 8
    Meh. I mean, what else are they going to do? The Apple Watch is already freakin amazing, can’t imagine it could be much better than it already is. I love my Apple Watch. Apple completely blew the competition out of the water. I do like that they simplified and united the message UI. Don’t see what more they can do other than update the hardware. And even then, what can they do? O2 sat will be pretty helpful for screening for sleep apnea, maybe helpful for hardcore exercise fanatics too. Even if they manage to make a reliable, powered watch strap, I don’t see much utility in that other than having cool light up watch bands (that I’d definitely buy). The leaked, possible design by that prosser guy looks fantastic, and looks like the speaker will get an upgrade. I guess the only thing to do now is release new form factors, maybe round? I think it’d be cool to see another version with a somewhat larger screen, not that it’s necessary, but would look cool on a lot of wrists. 

    One thing I think Apple could do better with is mental health, particularly trauma/ptsd, which is so closely tied to physiology, including heart rate. People don’t realize that most triggers are subconscious; monitoring for accelerations in heart rate could be very helpful for people to identify and become more mindful of triggers, monitor for nightmares, anticipate panic attacks so people can take helpful medication (e.g. propranolol), etc. 
    edited June 8 zhtfreakMplsPwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 8
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,827member
    amarkap said:
    igud71 said:

    What a disappointment. They slept all the year doing nothing for watchOS. This is watchOS 7.5.1.  :o

    They are lucky that competition is practicaly nonexistent. So Apple can do useless things with Apple watchOS.

    In the world exist people which are not obsessed with fitness, meditation. We love nice looking things with attention to details.

    Verdict:

    Hardware 9

    Software 3

    So you love nice looking things with attention to details....then you already have it with your Apple Watch.  Why do you care about Watch OS 8 upgrade being so minor this year?  To be honest our Apple Watches already do more than anyone thought it could do...they really don’t need anything more at this point.  I mean Apple will always surprise us...but we don’t need a killer upgrade every year.
    Good point. The only thing I want is not to have to take it off before going in the sauna. 

    And now of course, you can’t use saunas. 
    watto_cobraamarkap
  • Reply 6 of 8
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,146member
    amarkap said:
    igud71 said:

    What a disappointment. They slept all the year doing nothing for watchOS. This is watchOS 7.5.1.  :o

    They are lucky that competition is practicaly nonexistent. So Apple can do useless things with Apple watchOS.

    In the world exist people which are not obsessed with fitness, meditation. We love nice looking things with attention to details.

    Verdict:

    Hardware 9

    Software 3

    So you love nice looking things with attention to details....then you already have it with your Apple Watch.  Why do you care about Watch OS 8 upgrade being so minor this year?  To be honest our Apple Watches already do more than anyone thought it could do...they really don’t need anything more at this point.  I mean Apple will always surprise us...but we don’t need a killer upgrade every year.
    Agreed. My main complaint is that series 3 GPS makes you wipe the device to update the software, but that’s an issue with the hardware, not the software (unless you say it’s because the OS is too large.) Apple watch has evolved into a fairly mature and very capable device quite quickly. The fact that WatchOS 8 has mainly incremental improvements is just evidence of this.
    AI_liaswatto_cobraamarkap
  • Reply 7 of 8
    They need to add a "Weightlifting" workout. Functional Strength Training does not quite right....
  • Reply 8 of 8
    dbvapordbvapor Posts: 30member
    I just hope they’ve improved Siri when using AirPods Pro.  
    williamlondonwatto_cobra
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