watchOS 8 release date, features, leaks and what we hope to see
We’re nearing the reveal of watchOS 8, the next big Apple Watch software overhaul. The annual refresh will likely introduce a host of new features, enhancing the experience of owning one of the best smartwatches on the market.
Like clockwork, Apple is showcasing its latest watchOS at its World Developer Conference (WWDC) in June. This year, watchOS 8 will be unveiled alongside iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 at the virtual event, scheduled for June 7.
Of course, watchOS 8 will be compatible with Apple Watch 6, Apple Watch SE and some models of the previous generation. But assuming the software is available on the upcoming Apple Watch 7, the unveiling of watchOS 8 is a major teaser for what the next year of wearable computing will look like.
Here’s everything we know about watchOS 8 so far, and what we hope the updated system will bring to the Apple Watch.
watchOS 8: release date and compatibility
The official watchOS 8 release date, or the date the software is available for download, won’t be known until the next Apple Watch event. In the past, Apple has announced the availability of its new smartwatch software at the same time as it announced its new smartwatch.
Prior to the rollout of the final watchOS 8 version, beta versions will be available for developers and public testers. The first beta may be available shortly after WWDC.
Regarding watchOS 8 compatibility, we don’t yet know if Apple will offer update support for the Apple Watch 3. Although the company has continued to sell the 3-year-old Apple Watch, this could limit the update. watchOS 8 compatibility with Apple Watch. 4 and newer.
In any case, watchOS 8 will be free to install. Apple does not charge for software updates.
watchOS 8: Features and Leaks
We haven’t seen any credible watchOS 8 leaks so far, which isn’t unusual. That said, for watchOS 7, we saw a few features leak before the software was revealed. The same could happen for watchOS 8 in the coming weeks.
That said, there are a handful of likely upgrades we can predict. First of all, expect some improvements and additions to the workout app. The company’s latest fitness initiatives include Time to Walk for Apple Watch and the Apple Fitness Plus subscription exercise class service. We’re confident that more tools for getting in shape are on the way, from supporting more workout types (WatchOS 7 added dancing last year ) or different ways to record exercises.
You can also bet that Apple will add a new native app to your wrist, probably already on the iPhone. It could be related to health and fitness or offer more productivity capabilities for Apple Watch.
Finally, it’s safe to assume that Apple will introduce new watchOS 8 watch faces.
WatchOS 8 wishlist: what we want to see
Health application: If an app is currently missing from the Apple Watch experience, it’s the Health app. The Health app on your iPhone serves as a dashboard for all of your wellness data, from your sleep metrics and daily workout progress to noise notifications and symptom tracking. Since so much of this information is collected from your Apple Watch, it would make sense for a similar dashboard to be available on your wrist.
Application Notes: Besides the Health app, the app that we would really like to see on the Apple Watch is a native Notes program. Ideally, the Apple Watch Notes app would sync through iCloud with the Notes app on your iPhone. Whether you need to remember your shopping items, create a to-do list, or jot down a creative idea, a Notes app would let you do it without needing your iPhone. Likewise, you can reference your notes that you wrote on your iPhone from your wrist.
Keyboard: One downside of a Notes app for Apple Watch is the smartwatch’s lack of keyboard. This is why Apple should introduce a built-in keyboard in watchOS 8. Currently, there are third-party keyboard apps that you can install through the Apple Watch App Store, so it’s reasonable to believe that Apple can launch its own. version. It could even copy the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3’s T9 keyboard, which is easier to use than Scribble, in our opinion.
Mental health tools: When the Fitbit Sense launched with several stress management tools, we were hoping Apple would follow up with similar functionality for Apple Watch 6. It didn’t. Apple may hold a steady lead in life-saving features, but mental health tools are life-saving on their own. Last year, two top leakers confirmed that Apple is working on your smartwatch lane to warn you about panic attacks and increased stress. We could finally see them come to fruition with watchOS 8.
Bookmark this page for the latest watchOS 8 leaks and news leading up to WWDC 2021, which begins June 7.