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The radical evolution of watchOS and what it tells us about Apple’s future


I've seen the future and it's Apple Watch: The radical evolution of watchOS and what it tells us about Apple’s future.
I've seen the future and it's Apple Watch.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Unveiled at a special event way back in 2014, the first Apple Watch looked similar to the wearable we know and love today. But looks can be deceiving. Take the Digital Crown and Side Button, for example. Their design may not have changed, but their functionality is now very different.

Apple Watch went through a radical evolution over the past eight years. What started out as an “intimate way to connect and communicate,” has become primarily a health and fitness device.

This pivot is uncharacteristic of Apple. Products like iPod, iPhone and iPad launched with a clear vision and remained true to it. The Apple Watch’s evolution suggests a shift in Cupertino’s approach to new products, and provides tantalizing clues to the future of the company’s rumored next platform launch: realityOS.

Apple unveils iOS 10, its biggest update ever


iOS 10
iOS 10 is huge!
Photo: Apple

The next big iOS update for iPhones and iPads was unveiled by Apple today at WWDC and it comes with some gigantic new features to go along with an even bigger Siri upgrade.

iOS 10 is the “mother of all releases” according to Tim Cook. It comes with 10 big new features that make Siri more powerful than ever, plus some much needed changes to the way you interact with the lock screen and homescreen thanks to interactive notifications, widgets, and deeper 3D Touch integration.

101 things to draw and send with your Apple Watch


Learn to draw like Leonardo with Apple Watch Digital Touch Sketches
Learn to draw like Leonardo with Apple Watch Digital Touch sketches.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

The ability to send tiny finger drawings — or “Digital Touch sketches,” as Apple calls them — is probably the least-popular Apple Watch feature. Which is a shame, because once you get the hang of drawing them, they can be a lot of fun.

To help get you started, I’ve put together a compendium of 101 Digital Touch sketch ideas you can quickly and easily draw with your Apple Watch. I’ve sorted them by theme, and given them star ratings to indicate how difficult they are to draw. (Don’t miss the holiday section for some Easter greetings ideas.)

But first, a few tips on how to copy my drawings — and create your own — using your Apple Watch.

All the awesome features coming to your Apple Watch this fall


Changes are coming to Apple Watch.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Apple Watch apps have been ridiculously slow ever since Jony Ive’s timepiece started slapping itself onto wrists in April, but that could change by this fall thanks to the introduction of watchOS 2.0.

The next generation of Apple Watch’s software and apps was unveiled today at WWDC in San Francisco by Apple VP Kevin Lynch, who showed off a number of new features that probably should have been included on the device at launch. As we predicted, third-party apps will finally be able to run natively on the Apple Watch and there are a bunch of smaller improvements coming to the timepiece as well.

Here’s everything you need to know about watchOS 2.0.

Apple Watch’s Digital Touch has more colors than you know


Getting to this screen is key. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
Getting to this screen is key. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

When you hit your Apple Watch’s side button, just under the Digital Crown, you get a list of the contacts you‘ve marked as Favorites in order to send your heartbeat or taps to them via Digital Touch, or folks you want to text with using your new Apple wrist gadget.

There are seven different presets for color coding those contacts, too, which default to red, blue, green, yellow, orange, white and purple.

Did you know that you could customize the colors of each of these seven slots? Here’s how.

12 biggest surprises after a week with Apple Watch


Apple Watch
The Apple Watch keeps surprising us. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Far from being a superfluous device strictly for hard-core Apple fans, the Apple Watch is a surprisingly delightful and useful device.

Now that we’ve spent enough time with the latest gadget from the mothership, we’re noticing quite a few sweet little positives (and a couple negatives) about Apple Watch.

Bottom line: The more you use this thing, the better it is.