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Apple releases WatchKit for developers to create Apple Watch apps

Apple today announced that it is releasing the first beta of WatchKit to third party developers. The WatchKit APIs will enable developers to create apps for the Apple Watch, which is set to launch ear

apple watch 5

Apple today announced that it is releasing the first beta of WatchKit to third party developers. The WatchKit APIs will enable developers to create apps for the Apple Watch, which is set to launch early in 2015. The company released the SDK with iOS 8.2 beta, and Xcode 6.2. Also Read - Apple iOS 15, iPadOS 15 beta 4 released: What’s new, how to download

As per the official description, the Apple Watch apps are divided into two parts. One is “WatchKit Extension” that runs on your iPhone, and the second, dubbed “glances” is “a set of user interface resources that are installed on Apple Watch”. What this means is that the apps for the Apple’s first wearable will actually utilize the processing power of your handset, instead of relying on Apple Watch’s processors. This would take lots of responsibilities off Watch’s shoulder, and may even help to improve the wearable’s battery life. Also Read - Apple shines in June quarter, posts record sales for iPhones, Macs and iPads

In addition, developers will also be able to build notifications that show up on the watch to alert users and enable them to take actions from the Watch’s screen itself. Also Read - Friendship Day gifting ideas for your young tech-savvy besties under Rs 5,000

“Apple Watch is our most personal device ever, and WatchKit provides the incredible iOS developer community with the tools they need to create exciting new experiences right on your wrist,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “With the iOS 8.2 beta SDK, developers can now start using WatchKit to create breakthrough new apps, Glances and actionable notifications designed for the innovative Apple Watch interface and work with new technologies such as Force Touch, Digital Crown and Taptic Engine.”

WatchKit is now available to download now for iOS Developer Program members.

Apple’s press release follows.

Developers Start Designing Apps for Apple Watch

WatchKit Software Tools Now Available to Developers

CUPERTINO, California—November 18, 2014—Apple today announced the availability of WatchKit, software that gives developers a set of tools to easily create experiences designed specifically for Apple Watch—Apple’s most personal device ever. Apple has the world’s most vibrant and innovative developer community, and now these developers can begin developing WatchKit apps before Apple Watch becomes available. Developers can create innovative WatchKit apps, actionable notifications and Glances, for timely information accessible by an easy, quick look at Apple Watch.

“Apple Watch is our most personal device ever, and WatchKit provides the incredible iOS developer community with the tools they need to create exciting new experiences right on your wrist,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “With the iOS 8.2 beta SDK, developers can now start using WatchKit to create breakthrough new apps, Glances and actionable notifications designed for the innovative Apple Watch interface and work with new technologies such as Force Touch, Digital Crown and Taptic Engine.”

Developers can create notifications that allow users to take action or respond right from their wrist such as turning the lights off after they’ve left the house, quickly accessing flight details at the airport, and rerouting their transit when a train or bus is late. Developers can incorporate Glances, which quickly show users information they care about most, such as the latest news and sports scores, alarm system status or the next step of a favorite recipe.

Developers who have previewed the WatchKit tools and APIs are eager to start building on the personal and immediate experiences Apple Watch will offer users*.

“Fans crave real-time and personal information, and the ESPN app for Apple Watch gives us the ability to deliver live scores and information for their favorite teams,” said John Kosner, executive vice president of Digital and Print Media, ESPN. “Glances provide fans with a snapshot of live games, and if there is no game taking place, they’ll get valuable game-time information or the final box score. With actionable notifications, the experience becomes even more personal, as fans receive alerts on score changes, news and more.”

“Apple Watch allows us to make the Instagram experience even more intimate and in the moment,” says Kevin Systrom, co-founder and CEO of Instagram. “With actionable notifications you can see and instantly like a photo or react with an emoji. The Instagram news and watch list allows you to see your friends’ latest photos, follow new accounts and get a real-time view of your likes and comments.”

“The American Airlines app on Apple Watch reminds you when it’s time to head to the airport via pre-trip notifications, and provides updates for gate changes, connecting gate info upon arrival, and will notify you when boarding begins if you’re not at the gate yet,” said John Gustafson, American Airlines vice president of Digital. “Travelers can also ask ‘Where am I?’ in-flight and get real-time location information at 30,000 ft.”

The iOS 8.2 SDK beta including WatchKit is available immediately for iOS Developer Program members at developer.apple.com/watchkit. The WatchKit site includes programming guides, human interface guidelines, templates and more. Starting later next year, developers will be able to create fully native apps for Apple Watch.

* App features are subject to change and may not be available in all regions or all languages. Apple Watch requires iPhone 5 or later.

 

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  • Published Date: November 19, 2014 10:39 AM IST



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