Apple announces watchOS 3 – fixes performance issues, design updates and more

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Apple has announced watchOS 3 for Apple Watch. The new update brings much-desired app performance fixes, background data loading, new watch faces, updates to existing watch faces and much more.

Apple announces watchOS 3 - fixes performance issues, design updates and more

Here are all the new features and updates in watchOS 3:

  • Improved app launch and data loading time. Your favorite apps will be kept in memory and will get background updates. So when you launch them, the information will already be up to date rather than making you wait for it to refresh.
  • Side button can be used to access a ‘dock’ to quickly access favorite apps. The apps are now both glanceable and interactive.
  • watchOS 3 now has a control center similar to iOS
  • Message replies are improved. Icons show options to quick reply such as dictation, emojis etc and you can scroll down to see canned responses. A new feature called ‘scribble’ lets you write responses using finger touch.
  • New Minnie Mouse watch face, with different color options.
  • New Activity watch face in analog, chronograph and digital versions for fitness enthusiasts.
  • New watch face called Numerals.
  • Swipe on home screen to switch between watch faces.
  • Photos watch face now supports complications
  • New apps: Reminders, Find Friends
  • New SOS feature. Press and hold the side button to call 911 in emergency situations. Medical ID details will be shown on the watch after the SOS.
  • Activities and workout app updates include activity sharing with friends. You can choose which information to share with your contacts.The app shows their activity rings and other details, similar to how you see your own information. You can also send messages to your contacts to challenge them or exchange smack talk. New features targeted towards wheel chair users.
  • New app called ‘Breathe’ to help destress and meditate through deep breathing.

The developer beta will be available today while the final version will ship this fall to Apple Watch users.