Apple Watch According to many, it is declared the best smartwatch around, but it is still far from perfection and in some areas it is a step behind the competition. However, it seems that the Cupertino company is fully aware of this, as demonstrated by the public beta of watchOS 9 released in the last few days, which brings huge improvements to training and sleep tracking.
watchOS 9currently available in public beta, brings with it many improvements on the software side, but the most important focus on two areas: training and sleep tracking. As for workouts, Apple has added screenshots while recording an activity, to easily track even more data.
Now, for example, the zone cardio, very useful for monitoring the progress of the session. There are five zones, marked by different colors, and during the exercise the zone in which you are located is highlighted. Then, through the summary page in the dedicated iPhone app, you can see the graph of the heart rate trend, also colored and divided by cardio zones.
Photo credits: Apple.
Another feature is custom training, which allows you to create specific goals to focus on during the session. This is much more useful in distance or endurance-related activities like running, cycling, or HIIT, where Apple offers suggested patterns such as repetitions over length or time. The user will receive tactile and audio alerts when they reach their target heart rate, distance, calories or time. Unfortunately, at least at the moment, it seems that not all types of sports support the same goals.
Apple later added new running dataas the stride length, the time of contact with the ground and the vertical oscillation. These new metrics are automatically calculated and are only available during outdoor running workouts. You will also need to use an Apple Watch Series 6, Watch SE or later.
And if you tend to do the same route often with activities such as running and cycling, watchOS 9 also allows you to compete against yourself. Each time the same route takes place, the smartwatch will communicate if you are ahead of or behind your average time, how much distance you have left and will warn you if you leave the usual route.
The new mode of multisport trainingFurthermore, it is perfect for triathletes and anyone who wants to combine different activities in a single session. Apple has also added support for the swim tablet and swimmers can see a score SWOLF – parameter related to swimming efficiency – in their summaries.
Finally in watchOS 9 the sleep phase detection, thanks to the accelerometer and heart rate monitor data. It will detect when you are awake and will distinguish between areas such as REM, deep sleep, and light sleep. It’s a feature that lags behind the competition – Fitbit and other brands have been tracking this for years, even on mid-range trackers. But, knowing the Cupertino company, surely there must have been a reason behind all this: usually Apple inserts a feature only when it is certain that it is perfect and reliable.
Among other updates we find the typical new watchOS watch faces. They are called Metropolitan, Recreation and Astronomy. The first allows you to customize the style and appearance of the numbers; the second is the result of a collaboration with the artist Joi Fulton and the third shows the layer of clouds around the globe. It is also possible to further customize the Portraits dial and the Modular, Compact Modular and Extra Large watch faces now have many different colors.
As with iOS 16, watchOS 9 also integrates the reminder for medication, to remind users to take medications, vitamins and supplements. Among the other innovations we find the possibility to add events directly from your Apple Watch and Siri no longer takes up the entire screen when activated, it appears instead as a sphere like on the iPhone.
To install the beta version of watchOS, you need a Apple Watch Series 4 o versioni successiveas well as a iPhone con iOS 16 beta. This means that if you don’t want to risk running into nasty bugs, you might want to wait until an official release before updating. iOS 16 and watchOS 9 will be officially released in the fall, when the new iPhones and Apple Watch will be presented.
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