Friday Morning News: Apple Watch Edition

familiar_large_2xHappy Apple Watch day, guys and girls. It feel like it’s been a long time coming, but it hasn’t been that long at all. Apple started off by hinting at entirely new product categories as early as Q1 2014, only to show us the Apple Watch in September that year. While today’s public release definitely marks the longest between announcement and release of any Apple product (ever?), it’s here. So is the news, which as you can imagine, is all Apple Watch, all the time. See what I did there?

I, for one, welcome our new wrist-adorning timekeeping overlords. Before we get into some of the best apps for your new shiny, you might want to catch the latest Apple Watch Guided Tours from Apple. Apple Pay isn’t all that applicable to those outside of the US (and indeed, doesn’t even show up on the Australian version of the Guided Tours page), but I know a few people will be wanting to know how the Activity tracking and Workout apps work on the Apple Watch. Otherwise, there’s also the Apple Watch User Guide.

To get you started with a whole bunch of apps compatible with the Apple Watch, iMore has a bumper edition of all the Apple Watch apps fit for your wrist. There’s plenty of apps that have already been updated to work on the Apple Watch, so you’ll definitely be able to find something to play with in an entirely new way.

In terms of Australian apps, Apple’s App Store apps page for the Apple Watch lists a few of the bigger-names. A special shout out to NextThere, who isn’t listed but deserves to be up there with the best of them. The AustraliaPost and Westpac aren’t in the list either, but they too share the same Apple Watch compatibility as the rest of them. All the others listed are live and in colour on the App Store, as far as I can tell.

Yesterday, developer Steven Troughton-Smith showed us the Watch interface of some highly-anticipated apps. 9to5Mac has a similar collection of Apple Watch UI screenshots, giving us a sense of how things will look and feel for apps other than Apple’s own.

To-do apps such as Clear and Things have been updated for the Apple Watch, giving you one more way to stay productive. Whether that means playing with your watch in a meeting or getting a gentle vibration the next time you’re supposed to do something will depend on how you like to work. In any case, Cultured Code give us a little insight into how Things for Apple Watch was designed.

Strangely, the only Apple app that even mentions Apple Watch compatibility is Keynote, and even then, the accompanying Keynote Remote for Apple Watch hasn’t even been released yet, as far as I can tell. Keynote itself may be compatible with Apple Watch remotes for controlling slideshows, but that means nothing when there’s no app for that.

Even Adobe has gotten in on the Apple Watch app action, with Behance, Color CC, and Adobe Creative Cloud all being available for the Apple Watch.

Knock is an interesting Apple Watch app that strays from the formula by being an app to let you unlock your Mac by simply being in proximity and having authenticated with the Watch in much the same way that Apple Pay works. As long as you’ve entered your PIN and have kept the Watch in skin contact, you’re good to go.

WatchAware puts the number of Apple Watch-compatible apps at just over 2,200 at time of writing, but expect that number to climb over the next couple of days. The website has a few shortcomings in that it doesn’t let you search for apps(!), but you can see a couple of on-device screenshots.

Last but not least, iMore explains how Apple Watch apps work. But the best way to find out is to just get a few and start having a play: have an excellent weekend with your new toy, ladies and gents.

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