watchOS 2 is a good start, but developers want more Apple Watch access

“A software update to the Apple Watch’s OS gave third-party developers access to the device’s sensors this week, fulfilling a request they’ve had since Apple unveiled the wearable,” Fred O’Connor reports for IDG News Service.

“Stefan Damm, head of iOS at Runtastic, which develops a range of fitness apps, thought Apple could have gone further with letting developers tap into the Digital Crown,” O’Connor reports. “The apps themselves can’t be controlled by the crown, Damm said. This prohibits, for example, a developer from creating a game that could be controlled by the crown, he said.”

“Developers were hoping Apple would allow them to add buttons to a notification feature on the watch called Glances, said Mayank Kumar, senior iOS developer at Tile, which makes tracking devices that can be attached to items,” O’Connor reports. “Glances that come from Apple apps are allowed to have buttons, he said. Buttons allow a person to take action from a Glance, like pausing a song that’s playing.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Any “limitations” imposed by Apple are likely due to three reasons: Battery life, battery life, and battery life.


Can watchOS 2 sway 1st-gen holdouts to buy Apple Watch? – June 10, 2015


  1. The quote does not make it clear that watchOS 2 actually does allow developers use Digital Crown scrolling to be used for various purposes — the demo on presentation has clearly showed that.

    But not “clicking”/”tapping”, which is apparently mostly used/reserved for OS functions.

  2. They should allow full acsess to the crown and buttons.. No limitation on how they can be used!
    It ridiculous to allow for pushing it but not rotating it .

    1. Currently the digital crown is an interrupt to the system… no matter where you are it forces the home screen, This, in my view, is a highly desirable interrupt! Whenever something hangs, you always have a quick jump back to a safe state, or even if you’re lost in navigation, you have a quick, reliable reset to a safe state, this is especially true when developers begin writing more robust code, and even more so when games gain the robustness clamored for.

      1. turning the crown has many other functions as well.
        And very conveniant at too.
        Why block that from developers.
        Why cant turning a the crown offer functionality like planet orientations in the solar or the astronomy face.
        Why block that from developers?

  3. Developers are ALWAYS looking for more than Apple is willing to give and Apple doesn’t give until they are sure that the developers won’t screw things up for Apple. Just because something CAN be done doesn’t mean that it SHOULD be done.

  4. Once Apple opens up a function to developers, it would be highly a controversial move to take it away. But every action can have adverse, unintended consequences, and the Apple watch is a highly integrated instrument. Apple has worked too hard to risk the reputation of the Apple watch on hasty decisions.

    Let the developers work with watchOS 2 for a while and see what happens. A little caution is wise – Apple is in the driver’s seat and has no need to take big risks with the Apple watch.

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