Apple watchOS 2: everything you need to know


Tiny videos and itty bitty FaceTime also made it into watchOS 2, but only short-form videos such as Vines can be watched. Apple promises the quality of the videos will look great despite the small size because of the watch's OLED that sits behind the Ion-X and sapphire glass screens.

Apple Watch WatchKit

Fitness, Siri and Maps

The OS 2 update makes your watch more useful for workouts. HealthKit has more metrics shown on the watch and a real-time heart rate monitor that will be able to stream from your wrist, which means medical professionals are now able to use the data.

Apple Watch Activity

Saying "Hey Siri" enables you to start a workout now, and the command can be as specific as "Hey Siri, start a 30-minute run" or "Hey Siri start a 300-calorie walk", all without needing to open the app.

Other apps, like 7 Minute Fitness, can contribute to the rings on your Activity bar too, letting you keep all those valuable calories burned in one place.

Speaking of Siri, the little AI assistant can provide Glances by saying "Hey Siri, show me the Instagram glance" and it will pop up in the little voice search window. Siri is now able to control HomeKit devices and give you transit directions; we were only able to try the latter, and it needed to be told explicitly 'Hey Siri, navigate me home using public transport', otherwise it'll think you want to use the car.

Apple Maps' new transit directions will show up on your wrist with train, bus and subway schedules. However, as with Google Maps' updated service, information is only provided for selected cities around the world. Though previously available with Apple Maps, walking directions to and from transit stops will be part of watchOS 2.

Apple Watch Transit

Wallet and Apple Pay

Wallet, re-dubbed Passbook, has been updated, and all the new options you can use in iOS 9 with Wallet are available on the wrist as well.

Apple Watch Wallet

For those who enjoy the convenience of using Apple Pay on the smartwatch, OS 2 will enable more credit cards and reward cards to be stored on the device for better access – these are found with a double-tap of the side button (used to pointlessly store friends).

Friends and Digital Touch

For the popular folks who have more than 12 friends, you're able to add more people to your Apple inner circle right from the watch instead of adding them from the app. They're now categorized into different sets that show up on different screens for better organization.

Apple Watch Friends

Your tiny sketching experience will also be improved, as Digital Touch will let you use more than one color, so people can be more creative, although this just led to panic as we tried to draw a phallic object using more than one color and worried it would send half-finished as we tried to work out what to do with yellow.

James Peckham

James is the Editor-in-Chief at Android Police. Previously, he was Senior Phones Editor for TechRadar, and he has covered smartphones and the mobile space for the best part of a decade bringing you news on all the big announcements from top manufacturers making mobile phones and other portable gadgets. James is often testing out and reviewing the latest and greatest mobile phones, smartwatches, tablets, virtual reality headsets, fitness trackers and more. He once fell over.