First look: Third-party apps on Apple Watch

Posted:
in Apple Watch edited April 2015
Apple launched its first wearable with an App Store filled with more than 3,000 third-party titles, a figure expected to grow exponentially in the months ahead. AppleInsider offers a look at some of the first offerings.




Apple's Watch launch is a far cry from that of its iPhone forefather, which hit store shelves without an app ecosystem or official support for third-party software. Drawing from years of internal and external iOS developer support, however, the Apple Watch App Store went live on Friday filled with apps that test the platform's capabilities.

As seen in the video below, a number of big-name companies and developers were first to throw their proverbial hat into the ring.





Amazon's offering can be considered a stripped down extension to its full-fledged iOS app. Users are able to search for items using voice dictation, scroll through product descriptions and view star ratings with the Digital Crown. They can also add products to their Amazon.com wish list directly from Watch.

Other apps, like Dark Sky, make good use of Glances. With a simple swipe-up gesture, compatible apps serve up bite-size bits of information for at-a-glance consumption.

Social media services like Instagram let users browse profiles and images, but limitations prohibit Apple Watch app versions from playing back video. Users can still favorite video content, but playback is offloaded to iPhone.

Some of the more interesting apps incorporate support for Apple services. For example, the Starbucks app can keep track of payment card balances, find nearby locations and display loyalty points, with transactions completed via QR codes stored in Passbook.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20
    Nice review. Well spoken.
  • Reply 2 of 20
    I can't wait! Ugh, not til May. Stupid Space Gray popularity...
  • Reply 3 of 20
    tyler82tyler82 Posts: 1,023member
    When is iMovie coming out?
  • Reply 4 of 20
    idreyidrey Posts: 647member
    Used my Starbucks on my ?Watch yesterday! It was awesome. Loving the ?Watch so far. Is fun, practical, and all around great! ????
  • Reply 5 of 20
    curmicurmi Posts: 69member

    There is a great third party game called Zymon in the app store. Admittedly I built it. :P

     

    Overall though, as a developer, I can tell you that currently apps are VERY limited in what they can do. This is why you won't see any real action games on the watch (if they are the place to have an action game anyway). If/when Apple open up the APIs a bit more, we should see more interesting apps coming through.

  • Reply 6 of 20
    Is it me or does Facebook not have an app on the Apple Watch Store like they had mentioned in the Keynote?
  • Reply 7 of 20
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

    Some of the more interesting apps incorporate support for Apple services. For example, the Starbucks app can keep track of payment card balances, find nearby locations and display loyalty points, with transactions completed via QR codes stored in Passbook.

    Not all 2D bar codes are QR codes. QR is a brand name, and the Starbucks bar code is not a QR code. 

  • Reply 8 of 20

    Yeah this is something I'm trying to figure out because my wife has it on her watch and yet it doesn't appear in the available apps on my watch? Neither does eBay so I'm trying to figure out if its something within those apps that I have turned off or what.

  • Reply 9 of 20
    That spinner would drive me crazy. It does that when it is getting data from the iPhone via Bluetooth. I noticed it in the Apple Watch simulator in XCode and was worried about it and now I see that it is just as annoying as I expected it to be. I am going to wait for the native app SDK before I get excited about the Apple Watch. I think that with native apps that don't need an iPhone to work, the Apple Watch will be amazing.
  • Reply 10 of 20
    pmzpmz Posts: 3,433member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Itsnickg13 View Post



    Is it me or does Facebook not have an app on the Apple Watch Store like they had mentioned in the Keynote?



    Just what people need. Facebook on their watch. 

     

    #revolutionary

  • Reply 11 of 20
    idreyidrey Posts: 647member
    jbdman wrote: »
    Yeah this is something I'm trying to figure out because my wife has it on her watch and yet it doesn't appear in the available apps on my watch? Neither does eBay so I'm trying to figure out if its something within those apps that I have turned off or what.

    Did you check the setting in your ?Watch app on the iPhone? Make sure that "show on ?Watch" is on
  • Reply 12 of 20
    stephenroblesstephenrobles Posts: 91member, moderator, editor
    itsnickg13 wrote: »
    Is it me or does Facebook not have an app on the Apple Watch Store like they had mentioned in the Keynote?
    There is no Facebook app for the Watch right now.
  • Reply 13 of 20
    hillstoneshillstones Posts: 1,490member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pmz View Post

     



    Just what people need. Facebook on their watch. 

     

    #revolutionary


    Don't worry.  When the Apple Watch battery dies halfway through the day, they'll go back to doing Facebook on their iPhone.  All these apps can be done better on the iPhone anyway.  Let the nerds buy the watch.  The smart ones know they do not need a device that duplicates another one.  They'll look funny shaking their wrists trying to wake it up just to see the time.

  • Reply 14 of 20
    aaronjaaronj Posts: 1,595member

    That Dark Sky app looks great.  Granted, I won't be able to try it out until June when my Watch arrives. :(  

  • Reply 15 of 20
    You should install Nubair, free cloud music for the Apple Watch: https://appsto.re/us/t1fT6.i
  • Reply 16 of 20
    idreyidrey Posts: 647member
    hillstones wrote: »
    Don't worry.  When the Apple Watch battery dies halfway through the day, they'll go back to doing Facebook on their iPhone.  All these apps can be done better on the iPhone anyway.  Let the nerds buy the watch.  The smart ones know they do not need a device that duplicates another one.  They'll look funny shaking their wrists trying to wake it up just to see the time.

    Wait, what? Aren't nerds smart? And there is no need to shake watch ????.

    Nerd out ????
  • Reply 17 of 20
    tenlytenly Posts: 710member
    pmz wrote: »

    Just what people need. Facebook on their watch. 

    #revolutionary

    Just what we need. Another useless post by a sarcastic troll.

    #shutupandgoaway
  • Reply 18 of 20
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 13,002member
    tenly wrote: »
    Just what we need. Another useless post by a sarcastic troll.

    #shutupandgoaway

    We're not on Twitter.
  • Reply 19 of 20
    peteopeteo Posts: 402member
    C
    hillstones wrote: »
    Don't worry.  When the Apple Watch battery dies halfway through the day, they'll go back to doing Facebook on their iPhone.  All these apps can be done better on the iPhone anyway.  Let the nerds buy the watch.  The smart ones know they do not need a device that duplicates another one.  They'll look funny shaking their wrists trying to wake it up just to see the time.
    yeah you look great at the gym/running fumbling with your giant phone on your arm, or bouncing around in your gym shorts. Even better when you drop your phone in the river while trying to look where you are, or dropping it off a cliff while hiking. Wonder how funny you look while trying to take your heart rate with your iPhone camera. I known you, your the one who goes and checks your phone while people are talking to you because you got an alert and when you go to check you loose your self because you just need to read one more thing on Facebook, Instagram. That's ok, your being an ass, and we all know it but won't say it to your face, just behind your back.
    Obviously the irony of you posting the nerd comment on apple insider blog is lost on you. I'm sure your TMZ loving friends don't think your a "nerd"
  • Reply 20 of 20
    vuduvudu Posts: 28member
    I%u2019m going to hold off until they have the %u201COur Man Flint%u201D alarm feature on the watch!
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