Apple Watch Gets Over-the-Air Software Update Mechanism, But iPhone Still Required For Now

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    #1
    [​IMG]


    Apple appears to be in the process of decoupling the iPhone from the watchOS update process on the Apple Watch.

    [​IMG]

    In the first beta of watchOS 6, the Apple Watch gained its own over-the-air software update mechanism under Settings > General > Software Update. As on the iPhone, the mechanism checks for any available watchOS update and, if prompted, downloads the update directly to the Apple Watch.

    The mechanism became functional on Monday when Apple seeded the second beta of watchOS 6 to developers.

    As noted by Jeremy Horwitz, however, users still must review and accept the watchOS terms and conditions using an iPhone. Hopefully this is a temporary step that Apple removes before watchOS 6 is publicly released in September.


    Updating an Apple Watch's software previously required using the Apple Watch app on an iPhone for the entire process.

    This change is in line with the Apple Watch gradually becoming more independent from the iPhone. In 2017, for example, Apple Watch Series 3 models launched with cellular capabilities for making phone calls and more without an iPhone. And in watchOS 6, the Apple Watch received its own on-wrist App Store.

    Article Link: Apple Watch Gets Over-the-Air Software Update Mechanism, But iPhone Still Required For Now
     
  2. 8012R3 macrumors member

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    #2
    Hopefully the day where the Apple Watch is a stand alone device is not too far away! :)
     
  3. ThunderSkunk macrumors 68030

    ThunderSkunk

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    #3
    But not an iPad, even one with a cellular connection.
    Why.
     
  4. jona2125 macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    I'm on the the first beta of WatchOS 6 and it shows the OTA check
     
  5. Solver macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    Yay! My Apple Watch series 1 will soon be free from my iPhone, and then declared vintage
     
  6. ipedro macrumors 601

    ipedro

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    #6
    This along with the App Store and independent apps that don’t have to have iPhone counterparts will help bring in Android users without having to explicitly provide an Android comparability. Android users can simply download the Google apps that they use to get them notifications on the wrist.
     
  7. alphaod macrumors Core

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    #7
    Great; hopefully I don't need to carry my phone around anymore for days at a time.
     
  8. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

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  9. Braderunner macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    I hope the day comes, when the Watch can download an update directly, and not have to be on the charger to install. :rolleyes:
     
  10. justperry macrumors G3

    justperry

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    #10
    They (Apple) will also raise the price by an additional $200.
     
  11. scrapesleon macrumors 6502a

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  12. melgross macrumors 6502

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    #12
    For some time, people have said that Apple will never do this, because tying the watch to the phone was a way to sell more phones. Others have claimed that Apple will never release the watch to Android because of this tie, which includes(d) security ties.

    But what I see happening is that it’s quite possible that in September, in conjunction with the new iPhone, Watch and possibly iPad releases, Apple will stun everyone saying that in order to get the advanced health benefits to the widest range of people, the Watch will be available to those not having an iPhone.

    Everything they’ve been doing over the past year, and with WatchOS 6 points in that direction. It makes a lot of sense.
     
  13. Hodar1 macrumors member

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    #13
    I wish the OS updates would present a choice, let me burn my (unlimited) data, or WiFi. I understand and appreciate the requirement for either a charger on the watch, or a battery level on the phones.

    But, a warning box that says "Update will require a 'x' Mbyte download, proceed with using Data Plan, or wait until WiFi is available?"

    This does not seem like an insurmountable request.
     
  14. Relentless Power macrumors Penryn

    Relentless Power

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    #14
    This is just the start, it’s all about independency. The Apple Watch is not there yet, but it eventually it will separate itself away from the iPhone being its own entity. Eventually I see a day where the Apple Watch Will be a standalone device not dependent on the iPhone. I believe Apple visions this to be a ‘long-term’ goal for the Apple Watch as well.
     
  15. bigboyz12000 macrumors regular

    bigboyz12000

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    #15
    Im thinking when it is "standalone" like a Garmin watch, it will be bigger and bulkier? Just a guess as all that is needed will be in the watch at that point. I just want the apple watch to be more compatible but we know thats a hill to climb.
     
  16. MacFan23 macrumors 6502

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    #16
    iPad does have OTA updates.
     
  17. Rovank macrumors newbie

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    #17
    Are you sure about that, MacFan23. I don't need to connect my iPad mini to iTunes to update. A WiFi connection is fine, and I'm pretty sure it works when the cell feature is on, but I'm not going to waste money on data to try find out.
     
  18. Joe Rossignol Editor

    Joe Rossignol

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    #18
    Yeah, my bad, I explained this incorrectly. I've updated the article:

    In the first beta of watchOS 6, the Apple Watch gained its own over-the-air software update mechanism under Settings > General > Software Update. As on the iPhone, the mechanism checks for any available watchOS update and, if prompted, downloads the update directly to the Apple Watch.

    The mechanism became functional on Monday when Apple seeded the second beta of watchOS 6 to developers.
    (Obviously it wouldn't have worked until B2 since there was no update available until then.)
     
  19. macduke macrumors G4

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    #19
    I think at some point the Apple Watch will be the wireless host device for AR glasses, so it makes sense to move it away from the iPhone.

    When this happens, the iPhone will become more of a legacy device for Apple, much like the Mac, which has lower sales volume and doesn't get as much attention. But there will always be a vocal subset of the community that will want to stick with the iPhone. With an Apple Watch and AR headset, you could basically create a multitouch interface on any surface, negating the need for an iPhone.

    That all being said, it will be a long time before all of this comes to fruition because we need much faster processors for the Watch that sips power with larger battery capacity, and the same is true for the headset. I could see the Watch getting bigger with future iterations and doing the data connection and processing on the Watch and then sending that as a wireless signal (AirPlay 3?) to the AR glasses, which have minimal electronics (camera, maybe some depth sensors) so that they can be light and comfortable and still have enough battery to power the HUD. It's going to take a lot of time and engineering to get this working, but I see it as a viable outcome by around 2030.
     
  20. testcard macrumors 68040

    testcard

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    #20
    Great news - Apple Watch declares independence. Looking forward to OTA updates.
     
  21. mannyvel macrumors member

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    #21
    What he's saying is "why can't i use my apple watch with an ipad?"

    The answer of course is simple: there's no health app on an ipad. Which leads to the next question: why no health app on an ipad?

    From an implementation point of view the ipad is just as secure as an iphone, since it can do apple pay...but maybe apple pay for web isn't enough?
     
  22. DotCom2 macrumors 68040

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    #22
    YES. I believe this is where Apple is going with this. Not only stand alone from iPhone, but stand alone from any platform. Now if they could only do this on the HomePod!
     
  23. Don1985 macrumors member

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    #23
    Interesting take. I don’t disagree, just hadn’t thought of it.

    But what about folding phones, I thought they were the future!
     
  24. alex2792 macrumors 6502a

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    #24
    Great news, current update mechanism is slow as hell compared to iOS updates.
     
  25. JGIGS macrumors 65816

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    #25
    I don't know about lit. Probably just a specs upgrade. Probably won't see a new design till at least the 6 - 8th gen.
     

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