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Apple Just Shot the Starting Gun on the Smartwatch Wars

1 minute read

Apple Watch‘s software development kit (SDK), which gives developers tools to design apps for the smartwatch before its release next year, is now available.

The iOS 8.2 SDK beta includes a set of Apple Watch-specific tools called WatchKit, which allow programmers to work with actionable notifications and Glances, a feature that gives watch-wearers important snippets of information, Apple said Tuesday in a press release.

SDKs are popular for Apple software and around the tech world, partly because they give developers a head start working with the latest software in anticipation of a device’s official release. Apple said that developers will be able to create fully native Apple Watch apps starting later next year.

The new SDK is available for download on Apple’s developer site.

6 Things to Know About the iPhone 6

Apple Inc. Launches iPhone 6 And iPhone 6 Plus Smartphones In Madrid
There are two models: the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus. The iPhone 6 is 4.7 inches diagonally and 6.9 mm wide. The iPhone 6 Plus is 5.5 inches diagonally and a bit thicker at 7.1 mm. The iPhone 6 has enough pixels to make it better than a 720p HD display, and the iPhone 6 Plus has a full 1080p HD display — that’s more than some next-generation gaming consoles. Both feature a new design with rounded edges for a seamless touch.Pablo Blazquez Dominguez—Getty Images
Apple Inc. Launches iPhone 6 And iPhone 6 Plus In China
Apple Pay, a mobile payment system on the new iPhones, is trying to replace wallets. In Apple’s first push into the payments game, the iPhone 6 is equipped with Apple Pay and a Near Field Communication (NFC) antenna that allows you to tap your phone against a sensor to make payments. Credit cards from participating companies—Visa, Mastercard and American Express—can be linked to your phone’s Passbook. Several merchants, like Disney, Chipotle and Seamless, have signed on with more to come.Feng Li—Getty Images
Battery life on the new iPhones is equal or better to the old models. The iPhone 6’s battery life is roughly comparable to that of the iPhone 5: it features 10 more hours of audio, and four more hours of 3G talk. Both have standby battery lives of 10 days. The iPhone 6 Plus, however, offers the best battery life of any iPhone to date. It has 80 hours of audio and 24 hours of 3G talk, and its standby battery life is 16 days.JOHANNES EISELE—AFP/Getty Images
Apple Inc. Launches iPhone 6 And iPhone 6 Plus Smartphones In Madrid
The iPhone 6 is much faster. With 802.11ac Wi-Fi, the iPhone 6’s Wi-Fi speeds are up to three times faster than those of the iPhone 5s. The iPhone 6 also has faster LTE than the iPhone 5s, and it can make use of more frequency ranges than other iPhones, making for better roaming capabilities.Pablo Blazquez Dominguez—Getty Images
iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus retail sales begin in Spain
Landscape view is improved. Landscape views on the new phones will now be compatible for Mail, Weather and even the Home screen. A second pane will appear in landscape for some apps, like Mail. Keyboards on landscape will also be modified to make typing easier: additional characters will be placed on the sides of the traditional keyboard so users don’t have to tap an extra button to access them.Anadolu Agency—Getty Images
Apple Inc. Launches iPhone 6 And iPhone 6 Plus Smartphones In Madrid
A reachability function allows you to continue to use the iPhone 6 with one hand. A double tap of the Home button will make the top of the screen roll down, so people with shorter thumbs or smaller hands can still use the iPhone with only one hand. Double tap the Home button again, and the iPhone 6 returns to its normal configuration.Pablo Blazquez Dominguez—Getty Images

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