Custom personalization, Face sharing and, yes, Dance…
At WWDC 2020, a first ever Apple virtual special event, the company officially announced the next update to the Apple Watch operating system called watchOS 7, which will have many new changes including custom personalization along with health and fitness features. The update is expected to be available to the public (for free of course) later this year, most likely around September, which is when the iPhone 12 is also anticipated to be released. The WatchOS 7 update has been confirmed to be functional on the Apple Watch versions 3, 4, and 5. Which means if you have the earlier versions like Apple Watch Series 1 or 2 you will not be able to retrieve the update.
One of the features includes big new upgrades to the Workout app which is one of Apple’s most popular and most used apps on the smartwatch, according to internal analytics, presumably. Running, swimming, rowing, cycling and more are some of the current commonly used workouts that can be tracked on the Apple Watch. Now, four completely new workouts will be available – Dance, Core Training, Functional Strength Training and Cool-down which will offer custom-built motion algorithms and heart rate sensors to best track your movements.
Pre-loaded styles and intelligence can set you free
Dance is set to be added as a total body workout and will have the ability to track movements from a handful of the most popular dance styles that includes Hip Hop, Latin, Bollywood, and Cardio Dance (see video, above). Getting accurate tracking and credit for dancing previously proved challenging since dancing is not always repetitive and rarely has synchronized arm and leg movements like running and walking often do. With the newest update, Apple is using advanced censor fusion that will combine data from the heart rate sensor, accelerometer and gyroscope to get a better full body reading (movements in your arms and legs ) that will generate a more accurate ‘calories burned’ calculations for dance movements.
The OS7 will also track accurate calories for: Core Training, Functional Strength Training, & Cooldown. Core training where exercise is primarily focused on abs and back. Functional Strength Training is a workout type that helps you get stronger and move better for everyday activity. And Cool-down which can be added onto various workouts is when you want to continue with easy movements and stretches to bring heart rate and breathing back to normal.
Not bad. Sounds like very little new on paper, but if you use the workouts, like I do, these small changes represent more freedom to do what you want, and add a more natural feeling to your routine.
All your workouts can be tracked extensively with tons of precise data within the Activity App which is completely redesigned in the new update. The redesign has a new summary tab system to allows seamless switching between the Activity, Workouts, Awards and Trends views, all within one tab. The Activity App has also received a new moniker – and will be called simply: “Fitness”.
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