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How to create and send a new message on Apple Watch

Responding to a message on Apple Watch is easy, but what if you want to send a new one?

It may not be quite as obvious, but sending a new message from your Apple Watch is just as simple as replying to one. To do this you’ll use the built-in Messages app with your Apple Watch. You just have to start a new thread. Here’s how!

How to send a new message on Apple Watch

  1. Launch the Messages app from the Home screen of your Apple Watch.
  2. Press firmly on the screen of your Apple Watch.
  3. Tap on New Message.
  4. Tap on Add Contact.
  5. By default, your recent contacts show up. You can choose one of those or tap on the Contacts button to jump to your address book and choose one.
  6. Dictate a message or add an animated emoji and then tap Send.

How to create and send a new message on Apple WatchHow to create and send a new message on Apple Watch

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Skype for iPhone brings messaging to your wrist with Apple Watch support

Microsoft has updated its Skype app for iOS today, bringing along support for the Apple Watch just in time for launch day.

With today’s update, Skype users will be able to carry their conversations over to the Apple Watch by responding with speech to text, emoticons, or canned responses. Here’s the full breakdown of what’s new in Skype for iPhone version 5.12.2:

  • Reply to messages on your Apple Watch using voice to text, emoticons or quick prepared responses.
  • Start chats with your favourite contacts on your Apple Watch so you can do more on the go
  • General Improvements

Obviously the messaging experience with Skype on your Apple Watch isn’t going to be as robust as the full app, but this looks like a pretty good way for users to keep up with less involved conversations nonetheless.

More: Check out iMore’s Apple Watch app roundup

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Grab the CarPlay-friendly Pioneer AVIC 8100NEX for $859 from Amazon

Amazon is currently offering the CarPlay-friendly AVIC 8100NEX head unit for $859.99, almost 50 percent off its listed price.

The Pioneer AVIC 8100NEX has a MSRP of $1,400, though Amazon lists it for $1,699.99. While still expensive, if you were looking to get your hands on one of Pioneer’s more advanced CarPlay units, the sale at $859.99 makes it a little easier.

The 8100NEX, one of a number of new Pioneer CarPlay head units announced last month, features a 7-inch capacitive touchscreen display. In addition to CarPlay, the unit also supports Pioneer’s own dashboard system, as well as Google’s CarPlay.

For those that don’t know, CarPlay allows you to connect your iPhone to your car. To do this, you’ll need a device running iOS 7 or later.

As of this writing, there are only four units left in stock, so if you want one at this price, you might want to grab it now.

Get the Pioneer AVIC 8100NEX from Amazon now!

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28 Apple Watch tips and tricks you should know

Just got your Apple Watch in the mail? Waiting eagerly for it to arrive? Here are 28 tips and tricks you should know as you get started with Apple’s new wearable.

My Apple Watch is out for delivery! I’m pretty excited to see it finally arrive — especially because I’ve spent awhile learning about all the cool stuff it can do. There are a lot of really nifty things you can do with the Watch beyond checking the time or sending messages: Here are 28 of my favorite tricks and tips I’ve discovered while reading through Apple’s Watch user guide.

General tips

Manually turn on Power Reserve mode

Worried about your Watch draining too much power when you don’t really need much from it? You can manually put it into Power Reserve mode, which just displays the time. To do this, press and hold the side button, then slide the Power Reserve slider.

Wake to your last-used app

By default, when you flick your wrist, Apple Watch will wake and show the time. If you’d rather it go back to whatever you were doing prior to it going to sleep, you can change that setting by going to Settings > General > Activate on Wrist Raise > On, then select Open to the Last-Used App.

Make the on-screen text larger

With such a tiny device, sometimes you just want the option for bigger text at your disposal. Apple makes this easy in its accessibility settings; to change the text on your Watch, just go to Settings > Brightness & Text Size, and adjust to your liking.

You can also choose a specialty Big Text watch face if all you’re interested in is seeing the time in large numerals.

Mute alerts with your palm

If you have sound enabled on the Watch, you can keep it from annoying the outside world with notification sounds: If it goes off in a place you’d rather it not, you can cover the display with your hand for three seconds or more to instantly mute any new sounds. To turn this on, you’ll need to visit the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, then go to My Watch > Sounds & Haptics > Cover to Mute.

Hide watch apps

It’s going to be exciting at first to try out third-party apps on your Apple Watch, but those icons may quickly clutter up your device’s Home screen. To hide third-party apps, you can either touch and hold an app icon from the Home screen and press the red X next to it, or visit the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and show/hide apps from the My Watch section. Even though you’ve removed their Watch interfaces, those apps will remain installed on your iPhone unless you delete them from that device, as well.

Sadly, as with an iPhone, you can’t hide any of the stock applications.

Find your iPhone with your Watch

Can’t find your iPhone? Don’t sweat it — the Apple Watch can help you track it down. From your Watch face, swipe up to activate Glances, then visit the Settings glance. From here, tap the Ping iPhone button in blue to have it make a noise.

Use Handoff with Siri

If you want to send an email, make an OpenTable reservation, search the web or anything that might require more interaction with your screen, Siri notes that it won’t be able to help you on the Watch, but will happily assist you on your iPhone using Handoff. To do this, just pick up your iPhone after your initial Siri query and swipe up on the Siri icon in the lower left corner of the screen.

Quickly access Zoom and VoiceOver

Want Zoom or VoiceOver to be quickly available on your Watch? You can turn on the triple-click Accessibility shortcut to automatically activate either Zoom mode or VoiceOver. To do so, visit the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, then go to My Watch > General > Accessibility > Accessibility Shortcut. From here, you can choose which you’d like to automatically activate on triple-click.

Siri can also turn VoiceOver on or off with a verbal command — just ask your Watch.

Take a screenshot

Want to memorialize that Digital Touch drawing or Activity achievement? You can take a screenshot on your Apple Watch by quickly and simultaneously pressing both the side button and Digital Crown.

Force Apple Watch to restart

If your Watch is misbehaving, you can turn it off by pressing and holding the side button until you see the Power Off slider, then drag it across the screen. If your Watch is completely frozen, you can perform a force reboot by holding both the side button and Digital Crown for at least ten seconds, until you see the Apple logo.


Save custom watch faces

Not only can you customize Apple’s default Watch faces by using Force Touch on the Watch display, you can even save customized faces for future use. To do so, Force Touch on the Watch display once more, then swipe all the way to the left and tap the New plus button. From there, you can customize the new version of your watch face to your liking.

To delete a custom watch face, swipe up on it.

Set your watch five minutes fast

Like being early for your appointments? You can manually set the watch face to display five minutes fast — it won’t affect your alarms, notifications, or clocks from other countries, but it’ll show on the Watch face. To do this, go to Settings > Time > +0 min, then turn the Digital crown to advance the time ahead up to 59 minutes.

Turn off snooze for your alarms

Don’t trust yourself to wake up on time? You can disable the Snooze button on Apple Watch by going to Alarms > Edit Alarm and turning Snooze off.


Pre-compose custom Messages responses

You can’t type directly on your Apple Watch, but you can set up a few pre-composed responses via your iPhone that you can tap on during conversations to auto-send. To do so, visit the Apple Watch app, then go to My Watch > Messages > Default Replies.

Always send your dictated text as audio

When you reply to a message with your voice, your Apple Watch offers one of two choices: sending it as dictated text, or sending your dictation as an audio clip. If you prefer that your messages always send as audio clips or always as dication, you can make this happen by visiting the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, then going to My Watch > Messages > Audio Messages.

Pick a custom Digital Touch drawing color

As first discovered by Daring Fireball’s John Gruber, you can draw your friends a sketch in any color if you know how to activate the color picker. Just tap and hold on a color to reveal the picker; once you select a color, it will be saved in your recent colors palette.

Share your location in Messages with Force Touch

Want to send your friend your current location while you’re out and about? From your Messages conversation, Force Touch the display and tap Send Location.

Hold a call until you can find your iPhone

While taking phone calls on the Apple Watch is pretty futuristic-feeling, it’s not always practical. If you get a call on your Watch that you want to pick up, but your phone’s not in easy reach and you don’t want to start it on your Watch, you can tap Answer on iPhone to place the call on hold until you can find your device. The person on the other end will hear a short repeated sound until you can get to your iPhone.


Clear all your notifications with Force Touch

Though you can swipe left to delete an individual notification from the Notifications screen, you can also get rid of all your notification alerts in one tap. First, swipe down from the display to access Notifications, then Force Touch the display to bring up the Clear All option.

Flag Mail messages with Force Touch

There’s no way to compose new email on the Watch owing to its relative impracticability as an email machine, but you can flag messages you want to reply to later with ease. Just Force Touch on a mail message, then tap Flag.

Choose what mailboxes show up on your Watch

Don’t want to be inundated with notifications and info from all your mailboxes? You can choose specific mailboxes to show up on the Watch from the iPhone app. Just go to My Watch > Mail > Include Mail.

Switch between Day and List views in Calendar

Want to see what your day looks like — but also view items in a list? You can switch between Day and List views in the Calendar by using a Force Touch gesture on the screen while in the app.

Build your leaving time into your Calendar alerts

If there’s a location added to your event, you can create an alert to tell you when to leave that factors in driving or walking distance along with traffic. To do so, just make sure the individual event has the Travel Time switch enabled; you can do this on your iPhone by going to the Calendar app, tapping the event in question, and going to Edit > Travel Time.


Use the Taptic Engine when you’re getting directions

Your Apple Watch offers a variety of beeps, buzzes, and movements to get your attention, but it doesn’t stop with notifications. You can also use the Taptic Engine to help navigate you around a city. When you’re getting directions via the Watch, you’ll receive a series of taps when you have to make a turn.

For a left turn, you’ll get a series of two taps, played three times: tap-tap — tap-tap — tap-tap.

For a right turn, you’ll get a steady beat of 12 taps: tap-tap-tap-tap-tap-tap-tap-tap-tap-tap-tap-tap.

You’ll also get a long vibration when you’re on your last leg of the journey, and when you arrive at your destination.

Stop directions with Force Touch

Want your Watch to stop navigating? Use a Force Touch gesture at any point on the Maps app to cease directions.

Change your Music’s audio source

Want to switch from playing music on your iPhone to playing locally-stored songs on your Watch, or sending your tunes to an AirPlay speaker? Force Touch on the display while in the Music app and either choose Source or AirPlay.

Review your iPhone photos from your watch

The Camera app on your Watch lets you use it as a remote display and shutter for photos, but you can also quickly review any recent shots. That way, you can make sure you’ve gotten the perfect group shot before retrieving your iPhone.

Set a default city for your weather

The Weather app on your Watch can check a variety of cities, but if you want a quick weather lookup in Glances and on your watch face, you’ll want to pick a specific city. To do so, visit the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, then go to My Watch > Weather > Default City.

Your tips and tricks

Got a must-have Apple Watch tip beyond these? Share it in the comments below!

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PBS Kids Super Vision now lets you control your child’s screen time from your Apple Watch

The latest in a flood of Apple Watch app updates today is PBS Kids Super Vision, allowing parents to limit their kids’ screen time right from their wrist.

PBS Kids Super Vision now lets you control your child's screen time from your Apple Watch

With today’s update, parents will be able to control how much time their kids spend on PBS’ kid-focused website,, by setting a “Play Timer” from their Apple Watch. From the App Store description:

PBS KIDS Super Vision for Apple Watch is here! Set a Play Timer to transition you child from screen time to bed time or meal time without having to pull out your phone.

PBS Kids Super Vision already lets parents keep track of what games and videos their child is playing and watching from their iPhone, and today’s update brings a bit of that supervision to the Apple Watch. If you’d like to grab the update, you can do so now from the store link below.

More: Check out iMore’s Apple Watch app roundup

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Apple tweaks Apple Watch Band site to make for easier browsing

Just in time for launch day, Apple has revamped its Apple Watch band selection page to make browsing the different colors and types a tad easier.

Now, when browsing bands, users are presented with a large section for each Apple Watch band along with its available colors, price, and sizes. When users select a different color below each band that displays the option, the graphic will change accordingly.

Apple tweaks Apple Watch Band site to make for easier browsing

Prior to today’s revamp, the band selection page was setup in a grid, displaying each band type in a smaller graphic, with color selection delegated to the individual item page itself.

The page seems to be set up just for browsing, however. When a user picks a color then clicks the “select” button to be taken to the store, the color selection doesn’t seem to carry over. It’s a minor annoyance, but all one has to do is simply select their desired color again and go through the purchase process.

More: How to change the bands on your Apple Watch

Source: Apple; Via: 9to5Mac

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Official Apple Watch user guide now available from the iBooks Store

Apple has released its user guide for the Apple Watch on the iBooks Store, following its release on the web yesterday.

Official Apple Watch user guide now available from the iBooks Store

The official user guide for the Apple Watch is now available for download on the iBooks Store. Apple published the guide on the web yesterday, but now it’s available as a convenient download on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac.

The guide goes over both the hardware and software features of the watch. The guide takes you over the basics of using the Apple Watch, from pairing it with your iPhone to sending messages, to using the workout app.

You can find the Apple Watch user guide at the link below.

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Adobe Joins the Apple Watch Lineup With Three of its Apps

A whole tidal wave of apps are headed for the Apple Watch, and Adobe has joined in with 3 new ways to enhance your creativity and collaborate with others. The watch apps pair with iPad/iPhone apps to give you total control over your Adobe projects.


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Z Steel Soldiers, Sequel to Kavcom’s Popular RTS, is Available Now

Kavcom has released Z Steel Soldiers,which continues the story of the comedic RTS originally created by the Bitmap Brothers.


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Seene Lets You Create 3D Images With Your iPhone

Seene, by Obvious Engineering, is a 3D capture app that’s meant to allow you to create visually stunning 3D images with a tap of your finger, and then share them as a 3D photo, video or gif.


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