At the WWDC 2020 Developer Conference in June, Apple has officially announced the latest version of the company smartwatch series operating system – watchOS7. This update includes new customizations for watch faces, new workout options, and the long-waited sleep tracking.  This update will be released this fall for Apple Watch Series 3 and later smartwatch models, meaning Apple has officially stopped supporting the software for the Apple Watch Series 1 and 2. You will need an iPhone 6S or later running iOS 14 to be able to support watchOS 7. So what exactly are the new features? Let’s take a look.

Sleep Tracking

A native sleep tracking program is probably one of the most requested and awaited features since the Apple Watch went public in 2015. However, with the upcoming watchOS 7, Apple Watch users will finally be able to wear their watch to bed and track their sleep without having to download a third-party app. 

According to Apple, their sleep tracking feature will allow users to set bedtime and alarm using the Apple Watch’s existing vibrating alarms. watchOS 7 brings new Wind Down mode to help users set up a calming bed routine after a hard day. By cooperating with the iPhone, the Apple Watch will allow users to activate a series of app shortcuts. These shortcuts will help you turn off / delay alarms, turn on a playlist on Apple Music, turn on relaxation apps like Calm, or activate commands to smart home devices on the Home app every time you are about to go to bed or wake up.

Once in bed, the Apple Watch uses its motion and heart rate sensors to determine when you are in your dream and shuts off all notifications. In the morning you can look back at your sleep cycle to see if you woke up in the middle of the night, and glance at your progress over time.

To use an Apple Watch to track sleep, it must have over 30percent of battery to work properly. So if you want to track your sleep, remember to recharge your watch battery during the day.

watchOS 7 Will Track How You Wash Your Hands

This is an interesting new feature that used to keep the users healthy especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. This feature can detect when you wash your hands by tracking your hand movements and the sound of running water. Thanks to these data, the Apple Watch can provide reminders when you need to wash your hands. Once you’ve started washing, the Apple Watch will also start a 20-second countdown (optimum duration based on the CDC guidelines) to remind you when you can stop washing your hands. through an audible or vibrating notification. It can even remind you to do it as soon as you step into your house.

Share Your Watch Faces

watchOS 7 also introduces a new feature called complication, which is the term Apple uses for widgets that work on the Apple Watch screen. Now Watch users can combine several complications – meaning they can display more than 1 widget per app on the same watch face. This feature will allow users to create their own unique watch face. Although Apple still won’t allow third-party watch face, it will be much easier now to personalize the Apple Watch

On top of that, users now can also share the watch faces with others by a new feature Apple calls Face Sharing. Users can download watch faces from the Apple Watch app store, share their customized watch faces with another device or upload them online, and share the download link on social networks.

New Fitness Apps, More Workouts, New Health Options

According to apple, they will add several more workout options to the lists on Apple Watch. The new options are including dancing, core training, functional strength, and cooldown. Apple also said that the algorithm specifically tuned for these exercises and calorie tracking will be more accurate. In addition, now users who love cycling will get a new navigation feature in the Apple Maps. Now they can choose their routes based on time to destination, total distance, or the number of hills. Both of these features are in the newly redesigned activity tracking app; because Apple wants to bring all these features into the new Fitness app and remove the previous Activity app.

watchOS 7 is taking the Noise app a step further by expanding noise alerts to headphone levels. The Apple Watch already monitors ambient noise and alerts users when it reaches levels that could affect hearing loss. But now it will do the same when you’re listening to audio through your headphones your iPhone, iPod, or Apple Watch. You’ll get an alert if you’ve exceeded the recommended volume or listening time given by the World Health Organization.

Car Key Feature

This is another interesting new feature in the new watchOS 7. Now your Apple Watch can become a key fob for your car. Of course, you will not be able to give out car key permissions like on the iPhone. However, you will be able to accept them if they are shared with you through the Wallet app.  This feature will only be available on the Apple Watch Series 5 or beyond.

Other iOS Features in watchOS 7

  • Apple Watch has inline replies for the Message app
  • Siri can read back your texts when connected to earphones
  • The Apple Watch will get a translation app that allows users to translate entire conversations. 

There you go, now you have the upcoming new features in watchOS 7. You can also join the watch OS 7 beta if you have a device running iOS 14 to experience these new features. What do you think about them? Let us know in the comments!