Apple Watch 2020 with Steve Lipton
In this episode, Leo talks with Steve Lipton about the Apple Watch. We go into detail on the September Apple Event, watchOS 7, iOS 14 release, Apple Watch Series 6, and more.
- Steve Lipton- Twitter @Steve_Lipton
- Episode 18 - WWDC 2019 - Apple Watch with Gary Sabo
- Episode 32 - Training Your Team with Steve Lipton
- Episode 57 - SwiftUI with Majid Jabrayilov - Part 2
- Episode 35 - SwiftUI - The Good, the Bad, and the Benefits
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Apple September Event
- Is your app ready for iOS 14?!?! 🤯
- Why Blood Oxygen? What is VO2 max?
- Family Setup
- Series 6 vs Series 3 vs new SE?
State of Apple Watch Development
- Building Complications in SwiftUI
- Custom Watch Faces?
- When will the Apple Watch be fully independent?
- Why build an Apple Watch app?
- When should you build a companion watchOS app?
- Is Touch ID coming back?
Music from https://filmmusic.io
"Blippy Trance" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com)
License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
"Blippy Trance" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com)
License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
Leo Dion (Host): Did you get all your apps ready for iOS 14?
[00:00:02] Steve Lipton (guest): Fortunately, I didn't have it. Wow. That was one mess. I did not have to get into this was watching everybody else's mess.
[00:00:11] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah, exactly. It was just, I felt for people on Twitter. Cause a lot of folks were just kind of like, okay, the new versions coming out tomorrow and like.
[00:00:21] It was difficult just to get to the right to GM version and the betas still, you know, there were issues with submitting to the app store. Yeah. It, I don't get it. Do you, do you understand the logic behind it?
[00:00:36] Steve Lipton (guest): I don't, the I've I've made some guesses that they backed themselves into a corner that they wanted to launch with.
[00:00:45] I watch for the watch. And that meant that they had updated in order to get that for Friday. So when they did that, they then had said, okay, everyone has to go up to normal. And so we didn't get our normal warning about a GMC, why they didn't put the GMC last week. That's a good question.
[00:01:04] Leo Dion (Host): Or why you're not just waiting to release the watch next week too.
[00:01:07] Like yeah, exactly. I mean, just a week, it's out like either asking for a long time. So yeah, that's, that was really strange. What, I think. I th ink you can get away with like having an app not be updated for a few days, but still like the headache of it. It's just, just crazy already in a year with like issues with developer, the developer .
[00:01:34] Steve Lipton (guest): It was stressing a community that's already been stressed. Yeah, we're going to see, I mean, there's lots of subtle errors that are going to start. I've already seen a few with the betas and I warned ahead to those developers, but, I mean, we're going to see some issues that people are going to now.
[00:01:53] Yeah. iOS 14, only on the iPad, this eyes, the ones I've seen the worst of and start to get some bugs that they never expected. A scribble is going to cause a nightmare and a half. as I can see already, I've seen three apps that where you expect to be able to use a pencil, to do a control, they put a text control there.
[00:02:18] So it, it. It goes to scribble. Instead it goes to the Tech's control. It goes with their actual control. So, I mean, we're going to see things like that. And, those kinds of things are going to show up and nobody had really enough warning to know. I gotta get, make sure I hit this right. So we're going to get a couple of those.
[00:02:36] I've seen one of the ones that I was really frustrated with is, and now I'm starting to see bugs from them too. Is Niantic.
[00:02:44] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah, I saw your post about Pokemon go
[00:02:47] Steve Lipton (guest): blocked out Pokemon, go from beta developers. Jeez. and so you totally crashed on a beta a minute. I went to iOS 14. It worked perfectly. So they, they, first of all, lost me as a customer because I have been able to play.
[00:03:05] And that's a game that's based on addiction. Right. And if you lose interest, you're not going to go back to it. So they lost me as a customer.
[00:03:13] Leo Dion (Host): This isn't a great year to play Pokemon go
[00:03:15] Steve Lipton (guest): anyways. Yeah. It's been a bad year. I mean, they made enough, they made plenty of changes to try to get around that. But it's the other side of that is they had the opportunity to get developer instead of user input and say, okay, this is wrong.
[00:03:32] This was wrong. This was wrong. This is wrong. From people who had some clue about what they're talking about and then integrate that into a better thing. They're now getting that there's huge latency issues, which is what the post I've been seeing today. Huge latency issues in the new iOS 14 version. And now they're saying, Oh, you have to reboot and you have to do this, go, go read the whole manual and whole bunch of stuff like that.
[00:03:57] So, I mean, It's going to be handled badly and I'm sure a lot of people are gonna be handling it badly. Yeah.
[00:04:06] Leo Dion (Host): Welcome to another episode of empower apps. I'm your host? Leo Dionne. I'm the principal software developer at bright digit. Today we have with us, Steve Lipton. Hey Steve. How you doing?
[00:04:18] Steve Lipton (guest): Brady? Good. How are you?
[00:04:20] Leo Dion (Host): Good really glad to have you on, we'd been talking to in the summer about having you on one, the new Apple watch event happens and you did that fantastic workshop at three 60 iDev on Apple watch development, something I'm passionate about.
[00:04:34] So I'm really glad to have you on to talk about. This subject, I'll let you go ahead and introduce yourself and what you do.
[00:04:41] Steve Lipton (guest): Hi, I'm Steve. And, I am first of all, a CIO at a medical device company called scientific device laboratories. I spend most of my iOS time really working with LinkedIn learning to do.
[00:04:57] Courses for iOS development. I have a weekly tips show on LinkedIn learning called iOS developer tips weekly. And I have been writing lots of courses. The most popular one right now is of course, Swift UI essential. And I have updated the watch LS to watch a seven, which is, should be out sometime in October.
[00:05:20] so you'll see all the new stuff and how to use it. And I write lots of courses. I'm on number 23, I think now or something. Yeah. I like that of the numbers I've have recorded. So there's been a bunch of them in there.
[00:05:31] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. So we had a big event this week concerning mostly the Apple watch. Maybe before we get into the Apple watch, let's cover the other stuff.
[00:05:41] We talked already about the release of iOS 14, but we have a new iPad air. Are you getting any new iPad air?
[00:05:49] Steve Lipton (guest): No. And I don't think I'm going to do it this time. What
[00:05:51] Leo Dion (Host): do you have? What kind of iPad do you have right now?
[00:05:53] Steve Lipton (guest): I have an iPad generation six and an iPad. Pro, I think that's the generation two and generation four, iPad mini.
[00:06:03] And I'm using all of them right now. So I don't need another one yet.
[00:06:08] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah, I'm in the same boat. I got a, I think it's six gen iPad and second gen iPad. Pro 12.9. I really like, but yeah, I have no interest. I don't understand the like product line with the iPad right now because like iPad air is in a weird position and it also puts iPad pro in an awkward position because technically it has a faster processor.
[00:06:32] So yeah, it'll be interesting to see because. IPad covers so much of a consumption market. Like being able to walk stuff, you know, I've had areas sorta like a midline pro-sumer device. Really?
[00:06:47] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah. I'm actually surprised my. My big rooting for an iPad was actually my mini. I would love to see a mini with a pen.
[00:06:56] Leo Dion (Host): Oh, so the mini doesn't support pencil?
[00:06:58] Steve Lipton (guest): Not the ones I have seen have anything to do with pencils so far, I would like to see the most advanced possible thing you can throw in a mini minis are not as popular. I know that, but I'm a big fan of the mini it's super easy to throw in a pocket and hits that.
[00:07:14] Space where if I'm going to read, be reading a novel or doing some notes, it works a lot better for me. To have that around and try and even lug one of the other iPads.
[00:07:26] Leo Dion (Host): How about a larger phone? Cause that's kind of where people thought that like the iPad mini wasn't necessary because of the fact that phone sizes have gotten so much bigger.
[00:07:36] Steve Lipton (guest): I have the biggest phone, I've got a pro max and that's still small compared to my mini. I can't draw on my phone, but I can draw my mini. So it would be something as an artist. That's something that I could do some doodling and some scribbling and get some sketches out that I could then put on some of the other ones.
[00:07:55] I can't do that on my phone. It's still too small.
[00:07:57] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. So let's get into the Apple watch. We have a new Apple watch this year, this series six. and it seems like the big feature with the series six is blood oxygen. I don't get it. Maybe you might have a better explanation of why this is such a hot feature, but it's like, it's more concerned with like wellness necessarily than fitness.
[00:08:26] What have you seen as far as the blood oxygen and stuff that you think is going to make it such a hot selling point?
[00:08:32] Steve Lipton (guest): I think there's two things that are going to come out of this one. It's always what I come back to is Apple has arcs. They have character arcs, just like a story has arcs. This is another step on that arc for the real Holy grail.
[00:08:46] That really Holy grail is going to be blood sugar. This is another way of figuring out by blood color, what your health is. Eventually, you're going to be able to do this hopefully to blood sugar. And that brings in the whole diabetic market.
[00:08:59] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. Oh yeah. Definitely. I could see that.
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[00:11:26] So you think it's the same idea? Using machine learning based on blood color to figure out like essentially blood sugar.
[00:11:35] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah. They're getting, they're getting close to it. And that's what they're trying. I think that's what they're trying to do. They've got a huge number of patents for some kind of technology that was like that a while back in 2018.
[00:11:46] So this is something that I think they're working on. That the diabetic side of it, the blood sugar side of it, it needs a lot more testing is going to probably not going to be able to go through FDA as a Denovo, which is a new technology permission from FDA. So they're going to have to go through the whole.
[00:12:05] Range of things. So that's gonna take longer the other side of blood Oak too. There's a lot of good uses for blow to some of the studies they were mentioning. Cause they're now doing a whole bunch of studies to get hard data about what's going to be done. And they mentioned that in the event, the big ones going to be asthma people with asthma, we'll get an early warning sign of a possible attack of asthma because their blood Oh, two will go down.
[00:12:32] And so there'll be able to watch for those kinds of alerts and get to their inhaler before they start to have an episode. So, I mean, those people are gonna be using it to an extent. I think the most exciting one of the ones, the ones that we're talking about is looking at not using temperature, which is horribly unreliable for telling you if you're going to be getting sick.
[00:12:59] And go to for looking if you're getting sick, because if you're having a respiratory illness, It may start to change your normal blood. Oh, too far before you see any other symptoms,
[00:13:12] Leo Dion (Host): I would assume like symptoms like temperature or more based on the immune response than necessarily like getting sick.
[00:13:18] Okay. That makes sense.
[00:13:20] Steve Lipton (guest): So you're actually looking at what it's actually changing and that's something that they had. That was one of the studies they were talking about. That study is going to be very interesting. If we can move to more of a blood oath too, if you go in the hospital. One of the first things they'll be doing after they pop an Ivy in you is they will be watching blood too.
[00:13:40] There'll be watching pulse and the pulse oximetry, which is the blood Oh two. And they'll put this thing on, on your finger,
[00:13:47] Leo Dion (Host): It's going to say it's the thing on the thinker when
[00:13:49] Steve Lipton (guest): you put something on finger and they watched that really carefully, because that tells them a lot about what's going on in the lungs.
[00:13:56] without a lot of invasiveness
[00:13:59] Leo Dion (Host): now, I don't think we have anything as developers available to us as far as blood oath to right now. Well, I guess you'd have health care, but I don't know if that's like those specific sensors are going to be available through health kit necessarily. Do you know?
[00:14:16] Steve Lipton (guest): I don't know.
[00:14:17] I haven't looked because they just popped us in and I haven't loaded the GMC yet, but. I suspect that you'll be able to look at the data because I could see the data on the health app.
[00:14:27] Leo Dion (Host): Right. That's essentially what we see is developed.
[00:14:31] Steve Lipton (guest): We'll be seeing the data. We won't be able to get to the actual sensors, but we'll be able to see the data itself and then start tracking that.
[00:14:39] I'm sure there's going to be ways of tracking it. I mean, there's probably gonna be in their survey systems ways of doing it and we can probably work backwards from that.
[00:14:49] Leo Dion (Host): I would imagine it's, it's essentially going to be available like through a healthcare query of some sort, and then you could, you could access it that way, which is pretty, pretty sweet.
[00:14:58] So I'm wondering, like, what would it be the difference between. Is there anything special as far as the developer's concerned with series six and how you access that through healthcare, as opposed to what's available to us, like on a. Standard older AppleWatch so, yeah, that'll be really interesting to see how much they open that up.
[00:15:18] Steve Lipton (guest): It's going to be interesting to see that opening it up, how it's going to be playing into some of the other places that you may be using it. they talked a lot about VO2 max, which they up the range in in iOS 14, where you'll be able to see some of the other performance stats. Where are they going to start playing with the, adding the blood?
[00:15:40] Oh two with the VO2 max to get your cardiac rates, even more your cardiopulmonary rates, I should say, to figure what's your overall fitness is where that's going to go and where other developers, where developers can play with that is going to be interesting. but like I said, I haven't looked yet, so I don't, I'm not a hundred percent sure what's going to go on with that.
[00:16:00] Leo Dion (Host): Could you briefly explain exactly what VO2 max is as opposed to blood oxygen,
[00:16:06] Steve Lipton (guest): essentially VO, it's another measure of fitness. Very often. You will see it involved with treadmill, cardiac tests. Okay. And what they do, this is where I usually see people do it VO2 max, the most accurate way of doing it is they will be taking your.
[00:16:26] Heart rates and other information, your breathing rates and stuff like that on a treadmill and they'll stretch. And during a stress test, they'll pull that all the way up as far as they can to figure out what your upper limit is.
[00:16:40] Leo Dion (Host): As far as how much oxygen you can hold in your
[00:16:42] Steve Lipton (guest): how much oxygen and how and how far your breath is going.
[00:16:46] And at that point, that gives you some idea of your fitness. Now that's actually changing as you're doing things about how much this combination. Comes into play. Yeah, it's the maximal oxygen consumption and it's really based on Durance fitness, but what a lot of people do is they start using VO2 max, as an idea of how healthy you are, because you're going to have an idea of your cardio-respiratory fitness based on the VO2 max.
[00:17:15] And I was looking to see if I could find a scale for it, about where people are post to go. I do not see one easily find-able so I won't be able to say that, tell you that, but yeah, you can look in some of the health journals with stuff about where those numbers are supposed to be.
[00:17:31] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. I'm just reading Wikipedia.
[00:17:34] Apparently like athletes typically have like a 80 milliliters per kilogram. So like that would obviously be like very healthy. Right. You know, I don't know what the typical VO2 max would be for someone, but then that makes sense. And I, I understand what you mean by like a stress test and stuff. So
[00:17:54] Steve Lipton (guest): yeah.
[00:17:54] I mean, just give you some idea. It's been there for a while. If you get too low, then you've got an issue. That's what, the big thing that the change in, in iOS 14 is all about is if you get too low, Then you're probably going to having some problems and you may want to go see a doctor about them. Yeah.
[00:18:14] While I was seriously training here, I have a good example here. So December is 2017. I'm just gonna give you one of my numbers to give you an idea. I was the middle of training for the Disney marathon. so I was about ready to run the marathon, which I ran in the 2018, in January of 2018. And my, my VO2 max was 38.6 as I've been sitting around.
[00:18:36] So I'll give you my number just as COVID started and I didn't get to do anything. It dropped down to 31. So I started losing my fitness over that period of time. Okay. Okay. So it's a good way of say, Oh, your fitness is not being as good as you can and you can watch trends. I mean, they got the usual trend type stuff.
[00:18:55] Leo Dion (Host): Okay. Yeah, that's awesome. And it's interesting talking about story arc, how much they've basically like lean into the whole fitness and health thing. Like, it's not, I don't want to say it's like a one 80, but it's like a big shift from where the Apple watch used to be a, when it first debuted five years ago.
[00:19:14] So they're just, they keep going in that direction. As far as health and fitness are concerned.
[00:19:20] Steve Lipton (guest): I think that's really. When you look at the wearables market in general, I mean, they are dominating it, but if you look at the wear wearables market in general, before and after the Apple watch came out, those are the people who are going to be using wearables.
[00:19:36] you get the fashion a little bit first. And I really thought about this even when the first Apple watches came out, and I got a generation one literally to run with it, and I had a Nike watch that had a GPS in it. I didn't have the GPS in the first versions of my Apple watch, but I had it in the phone and I just ran with my phone.
[00:19:58] But. It worked really well between the phone GPS and my watch. I was able to get the data I needed and it did a better job than I had with the Nike watch.
[00:20:08] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. I have the same exact watch too. I had the Nike, it was like a Nike plus watch with the GPS on it. And then, yeah, I got the Apple watch and it was like, I was in the same boat.
[00:20:18] I got the series zero and then the series one. And it's like, yeah, I had to carry my phone around and everything. And like they've, they've kept making it better and better to the point where like, I don't think watch, I think they essentially like
[00:20:31] Steve Lipton (guest): they have their own
[00:20:33] Leo Dion (Host): Apple watch essentially, that you can buy with the custom watch face.
[00:20:37] And that's like their way of selling that watch now.
[00:20:41] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah, I think that's pretty much where they've gone. And I think what Apple is doing is they saw it in that first bunch and they were pretty clear. I think even back then they knew the health market was going to be big and they kept figuring out here's a great place to stick some sensors that you can't stick elsewhere.
[00:20:58] And the question becomes, first of all, how do you put those sensors in? How do you communicate with those sensors? I think the early watches. The bigger question was trying to get a communication between the watch and the phone was crap.
[00:21:13] Leo Dion (Host): Yes. Yeah. And now we've gotten to a point where it seems like they're willing to, to use more of the wifi and kind of just depend on the internet for communicating with the phone, as opposed to like directly communicating through Bluetooth or wifi or whatever it tries to use with watch connectivity.
[00:21:31] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah. They're doing a lot of things. I was very interested. Not I'm interested in it as, as a, as a product and service, but I'm more interested in the Apple fitness plus of what they're doing with the watch. where you're going to get some real time data from your watch directly to your other devices.
[00:21:50] It's going to, if it's an Apple TV or your phone or your iPad, it's going to be putting your stats from your watch directly on the screen as you're watching your workout. which is saying how well the communication has been compared to what I recorded. My watchOS. I think it was watching us. For course, you usually have a wait five seconds before you got some something from the watch to the phone.
[00:22:24] That's a big difference.
[00:22:25] Leo Dion (Host): There's a big difference. and it seems that like I'm curious where watch connectivity is going to be. Oh, well, let's, let's talk a bit about family setup. That was a big deal that they brought up. it's a feature as a parent. I'm interested in it, not necessarily now, but. It's really interesting how we're making the watch more and more independent.
[00:22:50] And it seems like this is the first kind of like them testing the waters of making the watch more independent. I feel like cell connection was first. And then this, obviously this requires a cell connection, which I find really interesting to me. Like as a parent, though, the expense of buying a watch and the responsibility of my children and at the age they're at kind of.
[00:23:14] Makes me not interested in doing it now, but I think at some point I think is a hand me down. I would be interested in maybe, you know, handing down one of my Apple watches once I got old enough to where I feel like they can actually carry that around. But that seems really cool. Like that they're kind of it.
[00:23:32] And quite frankly, Apple is not like very key. I don't want to, I don't know how to put it. Apple seems a bit. ignorance of how their software is not an ideal fit for families in a lot of ways, compared to some other companies that do. And so, you know, this isn't ideal, but it's definitely a good first step.
[00:23:59] If you're a parent and you want to know where your kid is and being able to contact them.
[00:24:04] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah, I think where you're going with, it has been one of the sore points with Apple. I know there were some developers that ran into some trouble in trying to get apps, to work with family type situations.
[00:24:18] And I think this is a response to that, but, you know, I, I see a couple of things that are important for developers along the way. Is we really start, have to thinking about independent watch apps.
[00:24:29] Leo Dion (Host): Oh, for sure.
[00:24:29] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah. and we can't think of going the traditional route. Anything, anything new is gotta be an independent watch app if you want to be using the family type situations because it's not going to sell it's, there's going to be the markets for things are going to be the kids.
[00:24:49] If this works. Along with the parents. And again, as that, as they mentioned in the end, the event, the more important one for me is not the kids. It's the mom and dads, right? It's the fall protection that you get some notification about the fall protection. That if you've got someone who's not all there yet or not all there anymore, right.
[00:25:12] Those issues I think are going to be even more important for this, then the kids, they didn't. They were trying to be sensitive to that by not by glossing over it more, but I think having, having better control over the fall issues and all those things where you can make sure that mom or grandma get to where they need to go, I think it's even more important than necessarily the kids.
[00:25:39] I mean, people think the emotional side of it is people think about the kids, but having to deal with a parent or grandparent who is not completely mobile and may not be completely in control of their faculties anymore. I think this is going to be a bigger issue for them than it is even for the kids.
[00:26:00] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. Yeah. And of course, Hopefully being able to convince them to keep the watch on and I think is really important. Yeah. I think that was one thing. The developers I noticed on Twitter were saying it's like, it is basically a requirement for your app to be independent in order to work on one of these family setup situations.
[00:26:19] Otherwise you kind of. It's not going to work. I've built an independent Hartwich, which I've built. That's an independent watch app. It's not hard to do really, to make sure that your watch is independent, the container situations, but strange. But yeah, it should be like every watch option, essentially be able to be independent at this point in 2020.
[00:26:40] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah. I would agree. There are a few places where I see that you really need some connection for some things. If you have a phone app, for example, that really is just having the watches and accessory of the phone. There might be somewhere where you want to continue to use it. some of my workout apps, for example, fall into that category where, or sometimes when, you know, Camera is a great example of another one where you're going to have it.
[00:27:08] That is the remote for the camera on your watch is only going to be a remote. There's not much more it can do. There is no, at least not yet any forward facing camera on your, on your watch. So you're not taking selfies with your watch. You're taking selfies with your phone, right?
[00:27:25] Leo Dion (Host): Yep. So with the. Family set up, they require a series four with the LTE connection.
[00:27:34] Right. And so part of their way to, kind of. Make a cheaper device that can hopefully sell to kids or families. Essentially we have the new Apple watch se, which I find really interesting. And then on top of it, they're still selling the series three, which is not compatible with family set up, which I find really strange.
[00:27:55] Exactly why they're, they're still selling the series three because for developers, first of all, you have a whole display class now that you still have to support. And then on top of it, it's not gonna even work if you try to do family setup. So I find that really weird. I almost feel like they should just stop selling the series three and just sell the se.
[00:28:14] And the series six. I don't quite understand it. You know what I mean?
[00:28:18] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah. I have no idea why they're picked the series three. There's like three things that I could think of about the series three that make it not the best option for the next watch that you want to use. I mean, the biggest ones, the complications, I mean the complications change from series three of the series four.
[00:28:36] So you've got all the new watch faces all of the complications that are around a watch. All the color ones that all started with series four and later. So your street doesn't have those. So you're missing out on tons of the watch faces that could be on this watch. So people are watching that video from the event and see, Oh, I could put on, you know, I have the, I have the, a, which one do I have now on now?
[00:29:03] one of the timer ones, they, The new timer one and they can't get it on. That's a serious story
[00:29:09] Leo Dion (Host): top of it. Like, what is the next cheap? If you're going to get a smartwatch non-Apple watch, what would it be like the next cheapest watch to a series three? Like as a Fitbit? Like, are there like a hundred dollars smartwatches or what?
[00:29:22] Steve Lipton (guest): yeah, I think there's things I haven't looked in a long time, but I think there's in the Fitbit range. I think there's a few that are below that. And I think there's some that are above that. Like, I don't understand that it's in the range.
[00:29:34] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. Because it's like the series three is 200 bucks, which is still very expensive for somebody who's not willing to spend that kind of money.
[00:29:42] And then you go to the se and then he got live. It's out another $80 for the se, but then you also need to spend another $120 or $130 to make it work with family setup because you need the self connection. And it's like the pricing, the pricing that doesn't make. A lot of sense to me. And obviously Apple's really good at pricing.
[00:30:04] So maybe I shouldn't say that, but like, it, it seems like either go, you make the se
[00:30:10] Steve Lipton (guest): really affordable.
[00:30:12] Leo Dion (Host): Or Andrew dropped the series three and then it wouldn't make a lot more sense and have a much more coherent line or make the series three really cheap, rather than just 200 bucks. Cause that isn't, that just isn't like necessarily cheap enough almost to me be worthwhile.
[00:30:30] And I understand like they're trying to saturate the market and I think that's partly partially part of it. Maybe
[00:30:36] Steve Lipton (guest): I think the series three solves a. Problem that Apple can run into. People have always said they don't have a really good low end. I think if I look at my phone from a distance, I can tell that I have an iPhone or an Android phone.
[00:30:54] It's usually relatively easy to tell it's getting harder with my current one. If you're not, if you're looking at it from the front and you're looking from the back. All that, that huge camera races, everything. But so, but you can tell from a phone. So for status reasons, I think it's purely for social proof reasons.
[00:31:12] Okay. If you look at an Apple, watch, an Apple watch will always look like an Apple watch. It doesn't look like anybody else's watch. It's very unique in its shape as far as watches that are out there. And I think if you want to say, Oh, I am cool because I have an Apple watch. Watch three works. For that particular purpose.
[00:31:33] And so they're leaving it in for that purpose as purely status. I don't think functionally it's a great watch anymore. I mean, I just moved from my it's sitting over here on my, on my counter here. I just moved to a, to a watch five, a couple of months ago. And the difference between this watch and that watch is amazing.
[00:31:54] And I would never want to go back to that. Watch it did a good job for what it was doing, but when I wanted to add more complications, which was the biggest reason I needed it, it fails. It does not have the ability to do color. So all the color complications aren't there, it means that all the new stuff we can do with Swift UI complications can happen.
[00:32:18] And that's going to be the next stage about what the other big nuke next stage that Apple is going to be playing with, has to do with those complications.
[00:32:26] Leo Dion (Host): So let's start getting into it and talking about all the new changes in watchOS seven and specifically complications. You did that workshop that I went to this summer on building complications.
[00:32:38] What's your thought about now this introduction of Swifty Y into the, watch face, essentially.
[00:32:46] Steve Lipton (guest): I think there's. Again, it's one of those character arcs that we're talking about. It's one of the most complained about character arcs. There is on the Apple, watch this customizing your watch face. We are, are about four views away from a completely customized watch face.
[00:33:04] And this is the next step in doing that is the two things that are added to watch OSR. One is that you can share your watch face. Two is the kinds of complications you can put on there. And so we've got new complications that are completely Swift UI views. and you get a nice little rectangle and you can put whatever you want in there, as long as it is an interactive.
[00:33:31] So as long as there's no buttons or sliders or anything like that, or gestures of any kind, you can put whatever you want in that spot, which is amazing. And we've got. Those complications. We have ones where you're able to customize some of the templates they already have with Swift UI. And with those pieces coming into play, plus you can have more than one complication for a given app.
[00:34:02] So you're gonna have one complication that might be that big Swift UI one. That's doing all the data that you need to do or showing you where you were on a map and your stages for your pizza delivery or something like that. But underneath that, you might have an order button for the pizza. You could build your own watch face with three or four complications.
[00:34:25] Save it, email it to your customers who have an Apple watch. They can then get the app for it and all that and all the parts of that. And then they can start using that. Face for doing all your stuff that you have for your app. It makes, you know, you get five or six buttons that you can use for your app, right on your watch face.
[00:34:49] Now, some people may customize that again and say, Oh, I don't need that button. I can put that button for something else. Like say, you know, I'd always put my battery. Cause I always like, I'm always paranoid about my battery, but I'm. We're seeing a movement more and more towards that customization. And I found one of the most interesting of those was the stripes.
[00:35:11] And I don't know if you've played yet with the stripes watch face yet.
[00:35:14] Leo Dion (Host): Not really. So here's, here's kind of, my deal is I, I like having a watch face with a lot of information on there. Yeah, me too. And I look at some of these like art, the, the new, The one with the face face, right? Yeah. You got that. You got stripes and it's like, why would I have one of those if I can't see the weather or I can't see like my calendar, that's why I look at my watch.
[00:35:41] Cause I want to look at like, whatever I'm trying to keep track of throughout the day. so like while I think these watch faces really look nice, it feels a little bit. Like disconnected from Apple that they make these beautiful watch faces, but they have like so actual little information and it's like, I understand for fashion purposes, why you do that?
[00:36:01] But like, it can't, they make one that's like at least has like two or three complications on it. So I can like have something nice looking while at the same time being able to see what's going.
[00:36:13] Steve Lipton (guest): I think what they're doing particularly with stripes is those are experiments and. How you can build with clock yet.
[00:36:24] It's the parts of the clock that we haven't seen yet, which I expect to see in watch OS eight, maybe nine. Because if you look at stripes, if you actually play with it, I wouldn't wear it either. I mean, I'm a, I'm an infograph person to say the least. If I don't have six complications on my watch, I'm not, I'm not happy.
[00:36:44] Right. But for me, what I saw as I play with those. Yeah. Great. That's a nice art thing. That's. That might be fun. I'm emoji might be cute, but it's only got a very small complication on it that you could put the date or one line of text, actually two lines of text. And that Stripe ones though, you're changing the entire background.
[00:37:07] You're saying how many stripes you want and what color you want those stripes? Now you're using selections. If you look at it on the watch, I mean, if you look on the watch app, but you're actually changing backgrounds. And that's probably not a very hard Swift you, I thing to do, if you know enough about Swift UI, to know that you've got a stack, you're saying how big the stack is and you're putting in a color index and then you just run it through a color and then you just say, okay, I've got those four colors.
[00:37:36] I'll pop that out. That's not hard. But that used me. The indication that being able to change the background is something they're experimenting with. They'll see how other, how the customers, the users will be looking at it. And then they can say, okay, that technology worked next. WWDC will say, Hey, you can start changing the backgrounds.
[00:38:01] Leo Dion (Host): Yeah. There you go. That might be something we'll see. And watch OSA is like changing backgrounds and then, yeah. And then watch last night, like really opening up clock hit.
[00:38:10] Steve Lipton (guest): I mean, there's only four things that are missing the backgrounds, the hands, which. Again, it's a very small view is just actually three views.
[00:38:21] And all you're doing is you're changing the game graphic in the view of the three hands. you decide if you're gonna have a second hand, but you're going to have the other two hands. So those are not that hard to actually think about. Those could be, it can be very simple views, a template for the complications and the dial.
[00:38:40] And that's it. I mean, you might have a digital version, which would be another thing that you'd be throwing in there of how to do it, but you'd have, they probably still stick with some kind of template where you would put a dial with a certain number of complications and you know what most of these still look like either utilitarian or infograph, there's only, still the four major.
[00:39:03] Types of watch faces still there. Right? There's not that huge, a difference between them, right? Those four templates, the hands colors of hands or images of hands, that's it? Yep. We're not that far. From custom watches. So
[00:39:24] Leo Dion (Host): we'll probably get custom watches, but it seems like one of the big limitations, what I'm really interested to see is what comes out of the reviews for the series six is it seems like there's still limitations as far as like how much you can use the network, but.
[00:39:41] Also like how much an app can use the battery. Because like, from what I've seen is like apps can be pretty aggressively shut down. I don't know how much that's changed in iOS seven necessarily, but. It seems like that's one of the limitations of building an app for the watch is the fact that the battery is so limited.
[00:40:01] Do you think, do you think Joel seven and series six, it might be time to start thinking about building a watch app or building companion watch app for your iPhone app.
[00:40:12] Steve Lipton (guest): I really it's one of those things where it really depends on the app. I don't think everyone should be making a watch app. there's a lot of stuff that is totally worthless for a watch app.
[00:40:24] In fact, I think there's a lot of watch apps that you don't even need. The app. I think the bigger issue is whether you're going to have a complication or not. I think it's 50 50, about how many times people really need an app and how many times people need a complication. I think the apps themselves may be nothing more than the platform.
[00:40:49] For the complications, because lot of what I'm seeing when I use my hands, I don't watch. And when I see other people use their watch is they're not interacting with the watch. I mean, I did that summer course. For example, I made an order form on a watch to order a pizza. In reality. That's not something that people will be doing is sitting there, scrolling away, trying to hit buttons.
[00:41:16] And I find that's not something that's a very good use of that small amount of real estate. They'll do that on their phones. Instead, what they'll do is they would like to look at their watch and know where when the delivery time is going to be
[00:41:29] Leo Dion (Host): exactly
[00:41:30] Steve Lipton (guest): you're not. And I think that's one of the problems that.
[00:41:34] Is true about the watch right now is a lot of people are still app centered. And really the watch is really complication centered and we're moving to that direction where it's, whatever you see on your watch face is what you're really going to do. I rarely dive into my watch to do things. The fitness apps are one of the few places where I will actually dive into my watch, do something my meditation app to start my meditation timer.
[00:42:03] Why that particular company doesn't put a complication. I don't know, but that's one of those places. I would love a complication where I could just push the button and it goes right into that.
[00:42:14] Leo Dion (Host): Or like any, like you said, any sort of health tracking, like, like for it, my app, Hartwich, doesn't have a complication because all I'm really you're doing is using the watch as a sensor.
[00:42:26] Like I'm not really, there's nothing you're tracking of, actively per se. So like, yeah. I don't know how you'd get away with. Having something that's just a complication without an app. At some point, you like, you're going to need a way to interact with the complication in order to like, like when you tap on a complication and it should open up the app, that just makes total sense.
[00:42:51] So it'd be hard for me to ever see Apple say, Hey, you can build an app without an app. That's just a complication.
[00:42:58] Steve Lipton (guest): I agree with that. I think the app is really a base for a complication. For many apps for many situations, I think there are apps that need to be apps. And when they're actively working with sensors, I think that's totally true.
[00:43:14] The ECG is another good example of that. The only thing that complication will ever do is launch it. Right. But for many apps we need to, what I'm saying is we want to be looking at complications. As valuable as apps, we're not necessarily going to be building an app. We're going to be building complications that give us information on our watch face the app may either launch something else, namely something that might be on the phone.
[00:43:45] And there has to be better communication between them, the launch it on the phone, or it may be something that you're going to be using onboard sensors to do something. I don't see the kinds of apps that you would see on a phone ever work well on a watch. I think that's been the biggest weakness of, of watchOS development.
[00:44:08] Cause I've noticed that watch does not get the kind of hits Mike horses as I'd get on iPhone courses and where they die off in watching the courses is very interesting as like, okay, I don't see where this would go. Because it's not the right environment for a lot of kinds of apps. The phone is a better place.
[00:44:30] Leo Dion (Host): Do you think would be like your biggest takeaway or lesson you would have for an iOS developer, especially, especially like a manager or a CTO. Who's thinking like I'm going to build an iPhone app
[00:44:43] Steve Lipton (guest): where
[00:44:43] Leo Dion (Host): they should start thinking, Hey, maybe this needs a watch iOS companion.
[00:44:48] Steve Lipton (guest): I would say the places where you would see a good watchOS companion.
[00:44:53] Is one something that you're going to be using sensors or timing directly on your watch. So that would be the direct types of uses for a watch itself. The other place I would see it. And you can say something like, I'll pick on ESPN is a good example where you have data. That's getting pushed to the watch from your servers.
[00:45:22] So that people have certain information. So be it news or sports or weather or things like that, those kinds of things, where people are really interested in seeing it right now on the second where they don't want to even open their phone to see it. That's the places you want to be using the watch. Yeah, I
[00:45:43] Leo Dion (Host): think secondary, we haven't mentioned this yet, but secondary to complications or notifications.
[00:45:49] because that's another way that you're going to be able to engage with your customer and your user. And besides complications is whatever complex notifications you might show up on the watch, because that's the other way they're going to, they're going to take notice of you.
[00:46:04] Steve Lipton (guest): Yes. And that's something that's very important.
[00:46:06] I did not get in there. And I thank you for bringing that up. Cause notifications also has been super enhanced with Swift UI. So we're starting, we're going to start to see with those a lot more of the interactivity, even in the notification, to do certain things, you can put real buttons in, not just the few that you could do it with.
[00:46:29] Watch get, you could do whatever you really wanted. And you could start to put into those situations, more interaction as you're giving those notifications. So yeah, I see that is definitely something that's going to come up too. Is pop up on the screen. Hey, this is now Don. Your pizza's on its way, whatever it may be.
[00:46:51] Yeah, definitely.
[00:46:53] Leo Dion (Host): So before we close out, is there anything you wanted to mention as far as the future of the Apple watch or just developing on the Apple watch in general and what you think, do you think Apple has really done this year and where do you think they're headed?
[00:47:09] Steve Lipton (guest): I still think it's the transition.
[00:47:11] I think we got a huge head blow last year with Swift UI. This year, Swift UI is. Starting to settle in. I think with the watch in particular, it's now one of those things where you really should consider Swift UI. If you're making something new, you don't have any legacy issues that Swift UI will, will start to dominate.
[00:47:35] The watch development market, because it is so much easier than the option, the alternative.
[00:47:41] Leo Dion (Host): And you could totally tell that's where swiftUI started?
[00:47:47] Steve Lipton (guest): Yeah, it was, I mean, starting with stacks. I mean, I brought it up in one of my other talks that I did recently is we started with stacks. What we now have eight stack the stack and the stack.
[00:47:59] We started that with the watch because the watch was not going to be able to handle a full. Xcode storyboard. And a lot of the stuff that you see in the wash, it makes total sense in terms of Swift UI. Yes. Thank
[00:48:13] Leo Dion (Host): you so much for coming on Steve. It was really great to have you on and talk about the Apple watch.
[00:48:18] Steve Lipton (guest): Thank you. It was good being here.
[00:48:19] Leo Dion (Host): Where can people find you online?
[00:48:22] Steve Lipton (guest): You can find me at, on LinkedIn and you can just look for Steven Lipton. you can also find me on Twitter. And that would be at Steve_Lipton. And you can also write me firstname.lastname@example.org.
[00:48:42] Leo Dion (Host): Thank you so much, folks in find me on Twitter @leogdion, my company is @brightdigit
[00:48:49] please take some time to go to Apple podcast or Google podcast if I can get it posted soon enough, Amazon just did that today. I would love some reviews on there and, feel free to DM and share this on Twitter. If you have any questions or comments about the show, thank you again. And we look forward to talking to you in the next episode.
[00:49:14] Steve Lipton (guest): Thank you.