The online home of John Pollard

My WatchOS 3 Wish List

There have been lots of posts recently about what people would like to see in WatchOS 3, so I thought I’d add a few thoughts of my own.

A Brief Review

Mostly I’ll echo what it seems most Apple Watch owners say - they love it despite its obvious limitations. The apps are very slow to load, and despite changes to run apps natively on the device in WatchOS 2, that didn’t make any difference at all.

However, the really useful things are great:

  1. Fitness Tracking - I’ve had a FitBit before, but the additional information from the extra sensors on the watch make a big difference. I love both of David Smith’s excellent Activity++ and Pedometer++ apps for tracking standing/exercise/calories used and step tracking.
  2. Notifications - once the settings have been tuned so as not to overfire, having a subtle Haptic tap on your wrist for important notifications is really useful. You really do learn to recognise the subtlely different taps for different alerts, and it’s so much handier than having to keep getting your phone out.
  3. Music control - the one Glance I actively use is “Now Playing”, which lets you control the music playing on your phone (like the controls on the phone lock screen) - so much more handy when commuting.
  4. Watch face complications - the most useful feature of all, seeing quick pieces of useful information at a glance is fantastic and very powerful when done right.

The one improvement I’d love to see

Obviously I’d love to see general improvements in speed and battery life. Charging the watch every night, like I do my phone, is really no big deal, and I often have over 50% battery life left at the end of the day.

What I’d really love to trade off is some of the battery life for extra background processing to keep the watch face complications more up to date.

As I said above, the complications are possibly the most useful addition 3rd party apps can add, but very often the information shown isn’t always up to date.

I know from my own app that complications are only update on a slow background schedule. Seeing as a watch should by definition be all about timely information, it’s really sad that the complication info can’t be fresher.

Finding a way to do that would make such a difference - I’d love it if WatchOS 3 can do that (especially on the existing hardware so I wouldn’t have to buy a new watch!)