Apple this morning launched first developer betas of iOS 10.3 and macOS Sierra 10.12.4, but the company has yet to officially post a developer-focused preview of watchOS 3.2. However, the official changelog meant to accompany watchOS 3.2 beta 1 is live on Apple’s servers, suggesting a rumored Theater Mode that Sonny Dickson said would launch in iOS 10 may be coming to Apple Watch instead. And what’s Theater Mode all about?
Well, Apple’s description states that Theater Mode lets users quickly mute the sound on their Apple Watch and avoid waking the screen on wrist raise. “Users still receive notifications (including haptics) while in Theater Mode, which they can view by tapping the screen or pressing the Digital Crown,” reads the description.
The changelog states that Theater Mode was introduced in watchOS 3.1.3.
However, watchOS 3.1.3 released yesterday and Theater Mode is nowhere to be found. That leads us to suspect Theater Mode is either coming in watchOS 3.2 or about to be activated remotely as soon as watchOS 3.2 beta 2 drops.
Aside from Theater Mode, watchOS 3.2 should include an updated SiriKit framework that’ll let you ask the assistant on your watch to book a ride, send a message, make a payment or make other requests that third-party apps can handle.
“Apps that provide services in specific domains can use SiriKit to make those services available through Siri on watchOS,” notes Apple. Exposing an app’s services to SiriKit requires creating one or more app extensions using Intents and Intents UI frameworks.
SiriKit in watchOS now works with services for messaging, payments, ride-booking, workouts, calling and searching photos while the AVAudioPlayer framework supports simple playback of audio data from a file or memory.
Who’s excited for Theater Mode?