Apple preparing first major update for the Apple Watch and ‘TVKit’ SDK for the Apple TV

Since its April 2015 debut, the Apple Watch to this date runs Apple Watch OS 1.0 as Apple has yet to release an update to the wrist-worn device’s operating system. As per a new report filed by 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman, a software update is in the works that’ll improve the Apple Watch’s connectivity with other devices like the Apple TV.

First and foremost, and what will help those who purchased a Watch sleep better, is a bump to the security features within the wearable. The report indicates that Apple is putting together a “Find my Watch” feature, which will work exactly like the “Find my iPhone” feature for Apple’s iOS-based mobile device. Meaning, if the Watch is misplaced or stolen, users will be able to wipe or lock the accessory.

Apple will make this possible with a new feature called “Smart Leashing,” as it’s known internally. The report cites unnamed sources, saying that this feature will use the Watch’s wireless signal to discern its location in relation to the owner’s iPhone. As noted in the report, this means that if someone leaves their iPhone on a table and walks away, the Watch can gently tap their wrist to let them know they’re leaving their phone behind:
“Apple wants to give [a user] a tap or a light notice if it thinks [he or she is] accidentally leaving [the] phone somewhere.“
Unfortunately, this specific feature could be further out than some other new additions to the Watch, as the sources suggest it could need a better chip under the hood.

One other new feature could be tied to the heartbeat sensor within the Watch, as a source cited in the report indicates Apple is testing the idea of the Watch being able to notify the wearer of an irregular heartbeat, if the situation comes up. However, the source also states that this feature might not ever make it out of the testing labs, as government regulation, and concerns of potential liability might dissuade Apple from releasing it.

A source claims that a set of Twitter Complications are being worked on, allowing you to display a count of unread Twitter mentions, “while a larger view could show the text of a recent Twitter mention.”

As for the Apple TV, expect a “fancier” remote that will be bundled with the rumored hardware overhaul of the device.

Expected to make its debut at WWDC next month, the new Apple TV box will offer deep Siri integration and the ability to run third-party applications via an Apple TV App Store and a new feature for developers called “TVKit,” Gurman has apparently learned.


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