It’s easy to get swept up in the fervor of Apple hardware rumors surrounding its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) — such as the long-rumored XR headset, the unveiling of an M3 MacBook Air, or an all-new M2 Ultra MacBook Pro.
Time for an upgrade
Recently filed patents may have given us a glimpse at the potential future of Apple’s wearable, with key standouts being strap-based health sensors and a built-in camera. However, according to industry insider Mark Gurman in his “Power On” newsletter for Bloomberg, those expecting major hardware changes shouldn’t hold their breath.
While disappointing for some to hear, it is a notion in keeping with Apple’s usual three-year cycle of Apple Watch hardware — and makes further sense with the Apple Watch Ultra having been out for less than a year.
Instead, Gurman believes that the most notable changes to expect from WWDC regarding the Apple Watch will be in the form of the wearable's updated operating system. The new watchOS 10 is expected to be unveiled in June alongside other Apple operating system updates such as iOS 17, iPadOS 17, and macOS 14.
Each of these updates will no doubt include a number of great new features, however, watchOS 10 is most notable among them for being the only one set to receive a “fairly extensive upgrade” with a primary focus on changes to the user interface.
While the Apple Watch has by no means been abandoned, many of its previous updates have been small and subtle, leaving many feeling that watchOS has somewhat stagnated over time.
Hopefully, Apple’s milestone watchOS release can revitalize the end-user experience and make amends for the drip feeding of a handful of new watch faces and some minor menu navigation tweaks. Ideally, while also improving on the software update process that irks so many Apple Watch owners.
While there are no clear details on what watchOS 10’s “notable changes” could be, the fact Apple has made the effort to sizably upgrade and improve the device’s user interface is a step in the right direction for many.
Whether or not the switch to watchOS 10 will be as extensive as claimed remains to be seen, but it should give wearable owners something else to look out for as the WWDC kicks off on June 5.
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Rael Hornby, potentially influenced by far too many LucasArts titles at an early age, once thought he’d grow up to be a mighty pirate. However, after several interventions with close friends and family members, you’re now much more likely to see his name attached to the bylines of tech articles. While not maintaining a double life as an aspiring writer by day and indie game dev by night, you’ll find him sat in a corner somewhere muttering to himself about microtransactions or hunting down promising indie games on Twitter.