Apple watch allows users to access data in a more personal and unobtrusive way. There is no need to pull the phone out of the pocket; the alerts or notifications can be accessed directly from the watch. The watch allows the user to get connected to other users in an amazing way. The side button on the watch allows easy access to all your friends and family. The user can easily tap on the screen to send a message or make a call in an innovative way.
Watch Apps available
There are a number of apps that the user can download:
- Shazam, and many more
Apple Watch Apps
3rd party watch apps require a paired iPhone and they are distributed or installed on their own, but they come bundled inside an iPhone app. If the user is installing an iPhone app that has watch support, then he or she will be prompted to install the watch app. The creation of the watch app actually involves the creation of an iOS app with watch support. The watch app can be added as a new Target to the app’s project in Xcode. The interface elements are built and then they are bound to the data in the iOS app. The watch app is nothing but a new set of storyboards in an iOS app that is paired with the Apple watch. The watch apps are completely dependent on the iOS apps to run. The best part is that they provide a unique and amazing way to interact with the app: the actual watch interface. Here are five considerations for doing Apple watch app development the right way:
Pairing the watch with the iPhone
The watch cannot work as a stand-alone device; it needs to be paired with the iPhone (5 or a newer version). Creating the third-party app needs a WatchKit app along with a WatchKit extension. Storyboards and resource files are available on the WatchKit and the code for managing the WatchKit app’s UI is available with the watch extension.
Using the Apple Watch
The watch apps are focused on providing exact information to the user. A completely different mindset is required from the developer when creating an Apple watch. The watch provides many different features to the user like:
- Fitness tracker
- Easy access to information
- Activity rings for day-to-day activity
- Easy pairing with the iPhone
A glance is the interface that is used to display the most important information about the app. They require speed in displaying the info, hence their name. They need to completely fit the screen, as there is no scrolling available. The user can tap on the glance to launch the watch app. A separate executable should be created in order to create a glance. Actionable notifications also display a small glimpse of the information, but with a little more access for the user. The notifications can be tapped in order to open the watch app.
Apple Watch properties
The developer should review watch properties by going to the Apple iTunes Connect Developer Guide. Properties can be found in the guide, as well as in the WatchKit.
The WatchKit extension runs on the iPhone and also allows the developers to host the app’s UI. All the coding part resides on the iPhone itself. Developers always need to code for both the watch and the iPhone.
UI essentials for the Apple watch
The layout model of the watch app is quite different from that of the iPhone. No view hierarchies are created, but the Xcode arranges everything for the developer. It handles the overall layout of the watch interface. The elements on the interface are another important tool to group the objects. These can automatically adjust on the screen of the watch.
Different Display sizes
The app can be customized in order to work on different screen sizes of the watch. The storyboard changes will be applied as default changes to all possible sizes.
Interface Updating at Runtime
There can be different modifications made by an interface controller like set or update data values, show or hide an object or change the size of the object.
App’s key color
There is a particular color for each WatchKit app. The association between the watch and the color can be applied to the title string in the status bar and to the app look in the notifications menu.
The internationalization is enabled by default in the WatchKit app. Fast-followers and imitators are in a tough competition with the other brands, and even Google and Samsung won’t allow commodity parity on other offerings immediately. WatchKit extensions have the same technology as the iOS apps, but use of a similar technology is restricted. Let’s look at some of the guidelines that need to be considered while deciding on a particular technology.
No long running tasks
WatchKit interactions are brief and the extension might be suspended before the data arrives.
Using background mode should be avoided
There are still many things to consider when going for such an innovative type of technology. Design and development specifications are not yet entirely clear and the interaction model proposed by the smartwatch is definitely harder to assume than the typical one proposed by the smartphone. For instance, although the watch is an amazing fitness tracker, but the users already using workouts would feel reluctant to spending money on this luxury device. Generating unique, attractive ideas for this wearable is definitely going to be a challenge.
Keval Padia is a Founder & CEO of Nimblechapps, a fast-growing smartwatch app development company. The current innovation and updates of the field lures him to express his views and thoughts on certain topics. Guest Blogging
YOU MIGHT ALSO BE INTERESTED IN
The Essential Role Of Trust In Product Development
As you get ready to build your product, you'll need a team you can trust to take the best possible decisions.