In addition to iOS 12 beta 3, Apple today officially seeded the third developer betas of watchOS 5 and tvOS 12.
watchOS 5 adds new features with a focus on fitness and connectivity. Here they are:
- Competitions: The Apple Watch running watchOS 5 can host 7-day competitions between friends and family members. One point for each percentage of a ring you close. Progress is updated on a regular basis, with yourself and with your friends who are part of the competition. If you win you will get a specialized reward for doing so.
- Running and Yoga Workouts: There is a new workout type for yoga, which focuses on heart rate. That calibrates with your fitness level with the rest of your day as well. There is the addition of hiking, too, with elevation gain and length of the trek. With running, watchOS 5 will also keep track of rolling mile pace, which is how fast you ran the previous mile. There is a custom pace alert, so the watch will alert you if you’re above or below. And current steps-per-minute will also be tracked, thanks to a new cadence feature.
- Walkie Talkie: The Walkie-Talkie feature will let you talk in short bursts with a friend or family members. First, choose who you want to talk with. The Watch will offer suggestions, too. There is a one-time request for a walkie-talkie request, and, if they accept, you can initiate a conversation at any time. There is a beep-beep sound that notifies of an incoming conversation. It works over both Wi-Fi and a cellular connection.
- Siri: The Siri watch face is getting new complications, including a resting heart rate, sports scores, and more. There are new Siri Shortcuts, as related to iOS 12, which will let you start a series of events based on your location, the time, and if you request Siri directly. Third-party apps are being used on the Siri watch face, too. So information from apps like City Mapper, Nike+ Run, and more will be supported right on the watch face. Apple Watch owners using watchOS 5 will also be able to simply lift the Apple Watch up and start talking to Siri without using “Hey, Siri” to invoke the feature.
As far as what’s new in tvOS 12, there isn’t much in the new features department. One of the biggest new additions, however, is support for Dolby Atmos for improved audio quality while watching specific, supported content.
In addition to that, the fourth- and fifth-generation Apple TV units will also support what Apple calls “Zero Sign-On”. With this feature, when you are on your TV provider’s broadband network, the supported apps and channels will automatically populate without actually logging into anything. Charter Spectrum will be the first to support this feature, with more providers coming down the line eventually.
Apple is also adding new Aerials backgrounds to tvOS 12, with new images of the planet earth that were captured by astronauts on the International Space Station. These will include both day shots and night images.
tvOS 12 and watchOS 5, like the other major platform updates, will arrive later this year.