Apple Watch

The upcoming Apple Watch era and the role of its SDK and iOS features

Apple Watch

With the launch of the Apple Watch early next year, developers are grappling to meet the needs of the new platform, and the iOS 8 features that will be compatible with the company’s first wearable device.

Apple’s upcoming Watch, based on iOS is expected to run third-party applications and its own independent App Store section for apps that are compatible with the new wearable device. Some high profile companies have been pre-seeded with a pre-release version of Apple SDK for wearables under signed NDAs. Facebook is one of them since it would soon launch an iOS 8-optimized app with improved notifications. The social network is also planning to revamp the Notification Center widget APIs.

Apple demonstrated third-party wearable apps recently since it had already offered the platform to some developers to develop new apps for the keynote address. The new Apple wearable is expected to be released in early 2015, which will provide the developers with lots of time to design, conceptualize, build, and implement apps by the time the Apple Watch hits the streets. The SDK is expected to feature iOS 8’s Extensions, the newly launched HealthKit, and HomeKit APIs.  Along with seamless apps which leverage the Continuity, Handoff, and Widgets features for easy transfer of content from the iPhone to the wearable device.

The Apple wearable is a fashionable tech product with useful fitness-centric features. There are a multitude of sensors including the new sweat detectors, pulse readers and motion sensors.  An NFC chip is integrated as part of the entire mobile payments platform. The software will map functionality based on new sensors.

Role of iOS 8 in the Apple Watch era

On the other front, iOS 8 adds interesting enhancements such as improved notifications, health-tracking, and a much more advanced camera application. But the biggest path-breaking news is of wearable devices which can be integrated or paired with any Apple device including the iPhone and the iPad.

The software will decide on the scope of the Apple Watch capabilities. iOS 8 includes many wireless protocols, applications, and features that open the doors for developers to bring something new to the table:

1. Widget apps

The modern smart watch would be expected to deliver high-response time after it is loaded with news apps, sports apps, and multimedia apps fit enough for smaller displays, The data is expected to be sourced from the iPhone’s full-scale apps. Apple has widgets planned out for each of the apps like the eBay widget, which seem intuitive for wrist access Apple’s Calendar, Weather, and Reminder widgets would be pretty much spot on for the Apple Watch.

Widgets will help in making apps quickly accessible and also assist users in notifications access. The Apple Watch will be capable of making phone calls with large circular icons and quickly accessible buttons for commiting the actions.

Since the iPhone and Apple Watch will be synced, managing notifications will be easier on the wearable.

2. Messages, Photo/Video, Voice Memos:

Wearables will be easier to record quick voice memos and even control the photo and video taking ability of the user. One would be able to send quick messages, with text and voice.

3. Spotlight Search:

The new and powerful Spotlight Search feature can be leveraged for searching apps, songs and the like. It would be able to search for local information and this advanced local search feature will prove to be critical for the Apple Watch.

4. Health App and HealthKit:

Various health-related resources have been gathered for glucose monitoring, vein scanning, and fitness assessment. With Health and HealthKit, Apple will get the Apple wearable to make sense of all the resources and innovations

5. Handoff for Phone and SMS:

The Apple Watch is pretty much loaded to make and receive phone calls including the messages. Even non-iPhone devices and wearables will be able to call and answer through the iPhone’s cellular chip. This technology is critical for Apple Watch’s success as an iPhone accessory.

6. iCloud Photos and Storage:

The Apple Watch will have the facility to store content on iCloud storage with the help of wireless networking so that photos and videos can be stored in a seamless manner online.

7. QuickType Keyboard:

Apple Watch utilizes an enhanced QuickType Keyboard which sits well on the smaller screen. Predictive text technology is integrated in the device so that the user will not face the hassle of typing on the four inch small screen.

8. MFI Headphones:

Apple Watch is expected to support Lightning-based headphone which is compatible with iOS 8. The lightning port can be now used for fitting in headphones to iOS devices. The thinner and smaller iWatch might use the new Lightning Headphone system for convenience.

9. Developers:

iOs Developers are already on the bandwagon for making apps based on each of the features offered by Apple Watch and iOS 8. Some developer APIs like Extensions and Metal will help developers to look in to the wearable market with better ideas.

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