WatchOS 5.1.2 to Be Released Today Bringing ECG Support to Apple Watch Series 4

Apple Watch Series 4 ECG

Apple has confirmed that WatchOS 5.1.2 will be released later this morning.  The new update will bring the much anticipated Electrocardiogram feature to the Apple Watch Series 4.  It will also bring irregular heartbeat notifications to all supported Watches. The ECG feature was one of the most touted features at the launch of the Apple … Read moreWatchOS 5.1.2 to Be Released Today Bringing ECG Support to Apple Watch Series 4

ECG Reportedly Coming to The Apple Watch Series 4 in WatchOS 5.1.2

Apple Watch Series 4 ECG

The highly anticipated ECG feature of the Apple Watch Series 4 is slated to be released with WatchOS 5.1.2.  The news comes via MacRumors who obtained internal Apple Store training documents.

The documents state that the ECG app will available only in the United States initially as it is a regulated app.  It must be cleared by local health authorities prior to being available in specific countries or regions.  The FDA has approved the feature here in the United States.

Read moreECG Reportedly Coming to The Apple Watch Series 4 in WatchOS 5.1.2

WatchOS 5.1.2 Beta Adds Walkie-Talkie Availability to Control Center

Apple Watch Face with Notification Dot

The second beta of WatchOS 5.1.2 is now available for beta testers.  It was released yesterday, and like most of the minor-dot release, is focused on bug fixes and improvements.  But there is one new feature in the beta.  You can now add Walkie-Talkie availability in Control Center.

As highlighted in a How To earlier this week, availability for Walkie-Talkie  works much like a do not disturb function.  When disabled, you will get notifications but not interruptions from those trying to talk to you via the feature. Until now, in order to change this, you had to go into the Walkie-Talkie app itself on your Apple Watch.

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WatchOS 5.1.1 Released – Critical Update for Apple Watch Owners

Apple Watch Face with Notification Dot

Apple has released a critical update for Apple Watch owners that addresses a number of issues.  The update is WatchOS 5.1.1 and it comes a week after the release of version 5.1.  That update brought several improvements to the wearable but also caused a few issues.  The biggest issue was that some Series 4 owners had their watches bricked by the update and had to contact support to get around it.

Thus, we now have version 5.1.1.  This update addresses the bricking issue that some Apple Watch Series 4 owners faced, but also brings a lot of other updates that could be impacting you if you are on a Series 1, 2, or 3 Apple Watch.

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Apple Pulls WatchOS 5.1 Update After Some Users Experienced Upgrade Issues

Apple Watch Face with Notification Dot

WatchOS 5.1 was released yesterday by Apple as part of a busy day that saw the iOS 12.1 update and MacOS Mojave 10.14.1 updates released too.  But a small number of Apple Watch owners experienced stuck updates on their watches yesterday, resulting in Apple pulling the update for now.

The issue seems to be impacting those with Series 4 watches who have upgraded to WatchOS 5.1.  The full scope of the issue is not fully understood at this time or hasn’t been released by Apple.  The vast majority of users were able to upgrade yesterday, me included, so it appears to only be hitting a small grew of users.

Read moreApple Pulls WatchOS 5.1 Update After Some Users Experienced Upgrade Issues

Apple Releases WatchOS 5.1 Without ECG Support for The Apple Watch Series 4

Apple Watch Series 4 ECG

Along side the release of iOS 12.1 and MacOS Mojave 10.14.1, Apple has also released the WatchOS 5.1 update for the Apple Watch series.  While the update brings support for Group FaceTime and some watch face customizations, the big news is that ECG supports has not arrived for the Series 4.

The ECG feature was a much hyped and big selling point of the new Apple Watch when it was released last month.  Leveraging electrodes in the back and Digital Crown of the Series 4, it allows for users to take an ECG. It had been assumed that WatchOS 5.1 would bring the feature.  Unfortunately, that is not the case.

Read moreApple Releases WatchOS 5.1 Without ECG Support for The Apple Watch Series 4

Apple Releases WatchOS 5.0.1 to Address Apple Watch Bugs

Screenshot of an Apple Watch

Apple has released WatchOS 5.0.1 for the Apple Watch today, bringing a handful of bug fixes that impacted some users with the initial release of 5.0 last week.  The update specifically addresses bugs that impacted the Activity App as well as some users not getting proper credit for Standing times, something that I personally was impacted by after the 5.0 update.

As with other Apple Watch firmware updates, the update will come as an over-the-air (OTA) to the Watch app on your iPhone.  You will need to have your Watch on its charger to install and apply the update.  It will take about 20 minutes to complete.

Read moreApple Releases WatchOS 5.0.1 to Address Apple Watch Bugs

Low Heart Rate Monitoring Not Exclusive to The Apple Watch Series 4

Low Heart Rate Warning on Apple Watch

When the Apple Watch Series 4 was announced last week, three new heart monitoring features were discussed:  Low heart rate monitoring, detection of AFib, and the new ECG feature.  At the time, Apple gave the impression that these features would be on the Series 4 only but, as it turns out, at least one of them is available for previous series too.

If you open up the Heart app on your Apple Watch, you will now see the option to enable and detect low heart rate.  I can confirm that it is available on the Series 3 (see the screenshot after the break) and a friend confirmed that on her Series 2 she has the option.  That means, at least when it comes to this new heart monitoring feature, it is a WatchOS 5 feature, not device specific.

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WatchOS 5.0.1 Beta Includes Support to Answer Group FaceTime Calls

Apple Watch with WatchOS 5

Yesterday, the first beta of WatchOS 5.0.1 was released to testers.  This release was in conjunction with the release of iOS 12.1’s first beta and with both beta builds, Group FaceTime has returned.

Group FaceTime will allow for you to have a FaceTime video call with up to 32 people at once.  It was a feature that had been expected to be released with iOS 12 but it was delayed just over halfway through the beta cycle for that build.  Apple has indicated that it will be out before the end of the year and with it being in the 12.1 beta, that seems plausible.

With WatchOS 5.0.1, Group FaceTime is there too.  No, you can’t take a video call but you can at least have the audio portion of the call on your watch before joining the video portion on your iPhone when you get back to your phone.

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WatchOS 5 Feature Highlight: Improved Notification Handling

WatchOS 5 Notification Options

With the release of WatchOS 5 yesterday, Apple brought a slew of new features and improvements to the Apple Watch platform.  One of those improvements is the way that you can deal with notifications on your Watch.

First, and just like in iOS 12, multiple notifications from the same app are now bundled together on your Apple Watch’s notifications screen.  This makes it easier to deal with a lot of them at once and is far more organized.  There is nothing you need to do here as this is how the improvement behaves out-of-the-box.

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