The Ultimate Guide to App Development For the Apple Watch

When it comes to the immense market share and progress that the Apple Watch has achieved in such a short timeframe, it’s no wonder why integrated apps are taking off just as quickly.

These finely designed smartwatches were developed with tech-savvy consumers in mind—those who want to rely on a convenient device with easy-to-access apps. From health, fitness, and daily activities like tracking sleep and sending money—all of which can be accessed and monitored in a wearable fashion.

If you are curious about the unique benefits and variety in applications this device has to offer then here is your ultimate guide to app development for the Apple Watch.

How to Develop Your App For Apple Watch

Today, developers can create an Apple Watch app in as little as a few simple steps but you’ll need the right tools to do so. Here’s what you’ll need to do:

Step 1: Sign-up as a Developer.

First, you’ll need to sign-up as an Apple developer. To do this go to developer.apple.com and register a new account. Within the developer section, there are plenty of resources to get you started. Be sure to read this available documentation and learn best practices for creating and maintaining your app.

Step 2: Install.

Next, you’ll need to download the latest Xcode version, Xcode beta 9, from the Apple website. Equally, you’ll need to also make sure you have the latest operating system, iOS 11 installed. To do this, click on the Develop link, and download the Xcode beta 9 file. Once the file has downloaded, drag it into your applications folder to begin the initial phases of creating your app.

Step 3: Create Your App.

Now it’s time to create your new Xcode project. To do this go to Single View Application. This still will create an empty project that you can fill in with important information such as the name of your product, the name of your organization and the language you’ll use (either Swift or Objective-C).

Step 4: Target.

Next, create the features for your project. To do this, you’ll need to choose the Apple Watch as your new target. Go to File >New > Target. Click on the Apple Watch. You have now created the foundation for your new app.

Step 5: Design.

Next, is the fun part—designing your app! Use the Interface.storyboard to do so. This is where you’ll bring all of your ideas to life.

Step 6: Run Your App.

Lastly, run your app and test it out to make sure it works. Congratulations, you now have a new Apple Watch app!

The Basics – Integration With Other Devices

The great news about the Apple Watch is that it integrates easily with other Apple products like the iPhone and iPad for a seamless experience. This is because Apple and its innovative wearable technology originated from a need to improve how other Apple devices were being used. Developers realized that many Apple customers were always looking down at their phones or tablets. They needed an alternative way to access their applications. From this, the Apple Watch was born.

Today, the Apple Watch offers enhanced wrist technology and solution that provides access to apps that are compatible across devices, and easily accessed through Bluetooth when connected to them. Even though the Apple Watch works on its own operating system, WatchOS, it can still be easily paired with other devices that run on the standard operating system.

What’s more is that the Apple Watch offers a user-friendly interface that includes a watch face surrounded by graphic-rich app icons positioned in a circular pattern. Here, various apps of equally varying functionality help you to perform basic tasks not limited to receiving messages, inspirational notifications and other voice commands supported by Siri intelligence that help you customers throughout their day.

What Are Some of the Top Apple Watch Apps?

The Apple Watch already comes equipped with the standard options offered on other Apple products including Apple Pay and iTunes. These apps can be categorized into easy to maneuver groups including health and fitness, news, music, entertainment, weather, social media, travel, tools and productivity, finance, games and so much more. What’s more is that due to the revolutionary nature of this amazing technology, apps developed by third parties are exploding as well.

When it comes to mobile app development, here are just a few of the top Apple Watch apps making waves in 2018:

#1 ProCamera.

The ProCamera application is a camera enhancer that provides advanced control when it comes to photography as compared to the standard Apple Watch camera app.

This app has incredible features like photo preview, a timer, and even helps users determine the number of photos they’d like to take. The enhanced previewing capability uses the Apple Watch display as a view finder to help capture scenes immediately and with precision. You can view photos directly on the device, providing both reliability and a satisfactory experience.

#2 The Citymapper App.

Getting to and from destinations has become easier than ever with the Citymapper App. The Citymapper app is rated among the top apps available for Apple devices.

This app makes use of your present location and presents you with step by step instructions on your movements in the area. It even has the ability to give you a tap on the wrist to let you know when you’ve reached your final stop.

#3 The Dark Sky App.

For Apple customers who walk their pets you know how unpredictable the weather can be. However, you can avoid unexpected inclement weather by downloading the Dark Sky app onto your Apple Watch.

The Dark Sky app will give you the weather conditions in your area—informing you on if it is about to rain, snow or produce some other form of unpleasant weather. This app helps consumers plan their outings with precisions by supplying the latest weather information not only for today, but with predictions for upcoming days as well.

#4 Shazam.

The Shazam app provides listening technology that helps Apple Watch wearers identify songs that may be playing on the radio or in the background during public outings.

To use this app, simply flash your wrist in the direction that the music is playing and the song title and artist will be returned to you. You even access the song’s lyrics for even more enjoyable listening experience. What is so great about Shazam is that it stores your search playlist so that you can access these songs for future reference and enjoy them over and over again.

#5 Viki.

The Viki app is a Wikipedia reader that provides Apple Watch users with access to a useful repository of data and information. Viki provides a convenient means to access Wikipedia simply looking down at your wrist. Featuring short articles on seemingly unlimited topics, Viki is a convenient app to rely on whenever you need information on the go.

What’s Next For Developers?

It does not matter if developers are new, indie, or have a solid commercial standing already. When it comes to next steps, there are many things developers can do to better position themselves for the Apple Watch. By staying abreast of the technology and listening to the needs of end users, savvy developers can continue to design and produce apps that are trendy, reliable, and best of all helpful when it comes to the various lifestyle needs of the public.

What’s more is that Apple, as a cutting-edge service provider, takes proactive steps to maintain a plethora of updated apps within the app store. For example, back in September 2017 there was a complete overhaul in the app store and new app focuses were introduced to keep the brand at the forefront of app technology. As such, developers have a firm market to tap into where they can present their best apps and quickly monetize their brands.

All in all, Apple Watch app development is on the rise and there is still room for more growth and contributions by developers who want to make a difference in the lives of the customers they service. Continue to stay tuned to all that the Apple Watch has to offer throughout the rest of 2018!

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