You can now take a day off on watchOS 11 without losing your streak

Apple’s upcoming watchOS 11 is set to introduce a host of new features, many of which are geared towards enhancing fitness and health tracking. At the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on Monday, Apple showcased the expected updates, set to roll out this fall, highlighting the new Training Load feature in the Activities app, pregnancy stats in Cycle Tracking, and the introduction of a Vitals app.

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The new Vitals app synthesizes overnight data to provide a comprehensive health overview. Apple Watch sensors monitor heart rate, wrist temperature, and respiration, combining this data with insights from the Apple Heart and Movement study to track health changes over time. The app will alert users when metrics fall outside normal ranges, though its utility may be limited by the watch’s battery life, except for the Ultra model.

The Activity app includes the Training Load feature, which evaluates workout intensity and duration using GPS data, sensor metrics, and personal details. It assigns a rating from one (easy) to 10 (all out) to each workout, adjustable by users. Post-workout summaries show if training levels are above or below average.

The Workout app will now feature a Check In button for notifying friends and family when users start and finish a run. Additional customizations for the Activity app can be made using the iPhone, including setting daily goals for specific days and designating rest days without breaking activity streaks. The Fitness app’s summary screen on the iPhone is also customizable.

The Cycle Tracking app provides insights during pregnancy, monitoring heart rate increases and tracking gestational age. It offers walking stability alerts in the third trimester and mental health reminders for monthly assessments to monitor conditions such as depression during and after pregnancy.

The Smart Stack, a rolling list of active app widgets, now includes time-sensitive widgets like precipitation alerts and the Translate widget when traveling. The Translate app is being introduced to the Apple Watch with support for 20 languages. Live Activities and Check In features will also be integrated.

Apple is expanding Smart Stack access for third-party developers, allowing for more integrated experiences, such as Uber arrival updates. Developers will also have access to the Double Tap feature for hands-free interaction with more apps.

The Photos watch face is improved with machine learning models that identify and score the best photos of friends and family based on facial expressions and composition, automatically cropping and framing these images.

Apple also mentioned new turn-by-turn directions for hiking and walking routes created by users.

For those eager to try these features, they will be available next month to participants in Apple’s beta software program. Developers already have access, and the general public can expect the free watchOS 11 update this fall for Apple Watch Series 6 and newer models.