Apple's Major watchOS 10 Overhaul May Revolve Around Widgets

At its developers conference in June, Apple will be introducing the latest versions of its operating systems running across the iPhone, Apple Watch, Apple TV, and Mac portfolio. But it appears that watchOS will be the one getting the functional overhaul treatment. According to Bloomberg, the upcoming watchOS 10 will be "one of the biggest software updates since the original version." The report claims that Apple wants to fundamentally change how users interact with their Apple Watch, and a core element toward that goal will reportedly be widgets.

It appears that Apple will be combining the old concept of Glances on the Apple Watch with the widget system that arrived with iOS 14. To recall, Glances was introduced during the early days of the Apple Watch, offering users a quick way to access some core functions and check out important information. With the arrival of watchOS 10, Apple will reportedly add widgets to its smartwatches that let users flick their way through tasks and details like weather information, launching an activity tracker mode, seeing stock graphs, viewing calendars, and more, without having to launch standalone apps for each one

A dash of inspiration from iPhones

The report adds that watchOS 10's redesigned aesthetics will fall in line with the Siri watch face that arrived years ago with watchOS 4. On the functional side, Apple will also allegedly borrow from the widget stacking system that is currently available on iPhone. Google also lets Android smartphone users stack app widgets together, offering them the convenience of just scrolling through the same pile of function cards instead of rummaging across home screens to find the desired one. But it seems Apple is not keeping the widgets limited to the software side of user interaction. 

The Bloomberg report claims that Apple might tie widget access to the Digital Crown. Right now, when users press the Digital Crown, they land on the watch face or the Home Screen, while a press-and-hold gesture launches the Siri voice assistant. With watchOS 10, Apple will reportedly shift things around to accommodate widgets. With the next version of watchOS, Apple might allow users to launch the widgets view when they press the Digital Crown.