Apple WatchOS 9 (2022): New Features, How to Download, Compatibility


If you might have an iPhone, the Apple Watch is way and away the best fitness tracker. The solely draw back maybe (in addition to the battery life) is that Apple’s well being software program has traditionally been considerably missing. It’s not unusual to see Apple Watch customers instantly switch their information to extra helpful and simply actionable software program, like Strava or Nike Run Club. But that might all change with an entire host of recent health options debuting in WatchOS 9. 

If options like measuring stride size and vertical oscillation work as meant, they may simply flip the Apple Watch into the best running watch and greatest look ahead to endurance athletes, interval. That’s as well as to an entire host of brand-new features on the new Series 8, reminiscent of crash detection and a physique temperature sensor that may assist individuals who need to develop into pregnant monitor their fertility. Here, we break down all the highest new options in WatchOS 9. Don’t neglect to try our Best Apple Watch and the Best Apple Watch Accessories guides for extra. 

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Is Your Apple Watch Compatible?

Will your watch have the ability to obtain WatchOS 9? The following fashions are suitable:

  • Apple Watch Series 4
  • Apple Watch Series 5
  • Apple Watch SE (2020)
  • Apple Watch Series 6
  • Apple Watch Series 7
  • Apple Watch SE (2022)
  • Apple Watch Series 8
  • Apple Watch Ultra

You’ll additionally want an iPhone with assist for iOS 16, which incorporates the iPhone 8 (2017) or later. You can try our iOS 16 features roundup for directions on how to obtain the brand new OS in your handset.

How to Install WatchOS 9

You can set up WatchOS 9 with both your iPhone or your Apple Watch. Whichever technique you select, you will need to be certain that your iPhone is related to Wi-Fi and working iOS 16, and that your Apple Watch battery is at 50 p.c (not less than). You’ll even have to be certain that your watch and iPhone are subsequent to one another, to maintain them in vary.

To replace your watch utilizing your iPhone, open the Apple Watch App and faucet on the My Watch tab. Then faucet General > Software Update and Download. From there, you will see a progress wheel in your Apple Watch indicating the replace has begun. If you select to set up an replace instantly on the Apple Watch, you will have to be certain that the watch is related to Wi-Fi. Then open the Settings app in your watch and faucet General > Software Update > Install

It can take up to an hour to set up WatchOS 9, so be sure you will not want to entry your smartwatch throughout that point. If you do want it, you may select to replace your Apple Watch in a single day as an alternative. When you obtain a notification that the brand new OS is obtainable to obtain, faucet the Update Tonight choice. Then in your iPhone, affirm that you really want to replace your watch in a single day. Before you go to mattress, be certain that each your iPhone and Apple Watch are charging all through the night time.

Health and Fitness Features

Photograph: Apple

There are plenty of enhancements to the Apple Watch’s well being and health apps. Here’s the lowdown. 

Better Workout Views

Photograph: Apple

To higher optimize your exercises, Apple up to date its Workout app to present extra stats, and you’ll rotate the Digital Crown to cycle by means of totally different views like Heart Rate Zones, Activity Rings, and Power and Elevation. You’ll even have the choice to construct Custom Workouts full with work and relaxation intervals, together with alerts for coronary heart fee, tempo, energy, and cadence whereas understanding.

Compass App 

Photograph: Apple

The redesigned Compass app now has a hybrid view that features each the straightforward analog compass that exhibits route and bearing, plus a brand new digital one. Turning the crown exhibits related navigational info, reminiscent of latitude, longitude, elevation, and incline. It additionally contains new orienteering options, like Waypoints and Backtrack. Tap the Waypoint icon to place a marker on a focal point. Backtrack makes use of GPS information to present the person the place they have been in the event that they develop into disoriented and wish to flip round. 

In-Depth Running Metrics

Anyone who makes use of an Apple Watch whereas working can be completely happy to know that you may now monitor new metrics like Ground Contact Time, Stride Length, and Vertical Oscillation—all of which might help enhance your kind. You can add them to your Workout Views, or view them within the Fitness app abstract in addition to the Health app (the Fitness app is lastly available for iPhones as of iOS 16). You’ll additionally have the ability to see traits and patterns over time.

Fitness+ Features

Photograph: Apple

If you’ve been streaming your Fitness+ exercises to a second display screen (like your TV) utilizing AirPlay as an alternative of Apple TV, you’ll lastly have the ability to see your coronary heart fee, energy, and Burn Bar in real-time on the show (if it is suitable). Speaking of metrics, there’s additionally a brand new “trainer callouts” function integrated into your stats—with phrases like “Hard” and “All Out!”—to allow you to push your depth ranges whereas exercising. 

Sleep Stages

Photograph: Apple

Sleep monitoring now exhibits totally different sleep phases. Leveraging the guts fee sensor and accelerometer, your smartwatch will establish while you’re in REM, Core, and Deep sleep. You can examine this information every morning utilizing the Sleep app on the watch. A extra detailed breakdown that features issues like time asleep, coronary heart fee and respiratory fee, and sleep comparability charts will sync to the Health app.

Log Your Medications

Photograph: Apple

In iOS 16, the Health app now incorporates a new Medications tab. You can use it to log medicines, create schedules, and set reminders. Those reminders will then seem in your Apple Watch (and your iPhone), with the flexibility to log the second you’re taking them by tapping the notification in your watch.

Track Your AFib History

Photograph: Apple

If you have been identified with atrial fibrillation, now you can allow the AFib History function for a weekly replace on deeper insights pertaining to your situation. You can see an estimate of how usually your coronary heart rhythm exhibits indicators of AFib and the way different elements reminiscent of train, sleep, and alcohol impression your AFib. You can entry an in depth historical past by way of the Health app too—with the choice to obtain a PDF to give to your major care doctor. According to Apple, the function has “received a number of local clearances and approvals from health authorities around the world, and will be available in more than 100 countries and territories, including the US, Canada, Europe, Hong Kong, Mexico, South Africa, the UK, and more.” It can be out there in Australia later this fall.

Temperature Sensing (Series 8 and Ultra Only)

Photograph: Apple

With a two-sided temperature sensor—one on the again of the smartwatch shut to your pores and skin and one underneath the show—the Apple Watch Series 8 packs a brand new function that may assist detect modifications in your physique relying in your temperature. While asleep, it could actually measure your wrist temperature to detect any variations to your baseline temperature that may be brought on by one thing reminiscent of sickness or exhaustion. If you monitor your interval utilizing the Health app, you will obtain “retrospective ovulation estimates” to assist with household planning and enhance interval predictions. 



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