Apple on Tuesday announced that its set of WatchKit development tools is now available for developers and allows them to start making custom third-party applications and software for the company’s upcoming Apple Watch, before the new accessory hits the market in early 2015.
WatchKit gives the opportunity to create not only WatchKit apps, but also Glances and actionable notifications. The tools along with the new iOS 8.2 software development kit, which includes programming instructions, human interface guidelines, templates and more, can be downloaded at the company’s developer website.
Glances can be used by developers to have users information they need most, including the latest news and sports scores, current Weather information, alarm system status or the next step of a favorite recipe. There is a limited number of available templates, as described by Apple, as to how they can appear.
Actionable notifications offer a different way of getting the notifications that already present themselves on iOS today. Developers can give some custom images to personalize the notifications.
Instagram has tried WatchKit to develop actionable notifications that allow users to instantly like a photo or send with an emoji, plus there’s an Instagram news and watch list to give users ability to view their friends favorite photos and get an overview of likes and comments
Apple also attached a 28-minute-long video, that aims to help developers start with WatchKit and begin making apps and more for the Apple Watch.
“Apple Watch is our most personal device ever, and WatchKit provides the incredible iOS developer community with the tools they need to create exciting new experiences right on your wrist,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “With the iOS 8.2 beta SDK, developers can now start using WatchKit to create breakthrough new apps, Glances and actionable notifications designed for the innovative Apple Watch interface and work with new technologies such as Force Touch, Digital Crown and Taptic Engine.”
Apple has said that its Apple Watch will hit the market in “early 2015,” but an exact launch date remains unclear.