The next major revision to Apple’s desktop operating system will bring enhancements to the Apple Watch authentication feature. You’ll be able to authorize other operations beyond simply unlocking the computer.
macOS Sierra debuted a new feature called Auto Unlock that lets you get into your Mac without typing your account password simply by wearing a passcode-protected Apple Watch. With Auto Unlock, you just wake up your Mac and if it senses you’re nearby and wearing your watch, it’ll log you in automatically. Yes, it just works!
Auto Unlock imposes certain hardware pre-requisites in terms of modern Bluetooth and Wi-Fi chipsets. Here’s how you can quickly check if your Mac supports Auto Unlock.
A second beta of watchOS 3 released last week alongside iOS 10 beta 2, macOS Sierra beta 2 and tvOS 10 beta 2. Having posted our video walkthroughs and detailed overviews of what’s new in iOS 10 beta 2 and macOS Sierra beta 2, my colleague Andrew and I now get to take a closer look at everything new in watchOS 3 beta 2.
watchOS 3 beta 2 is not as feature-packed a release as the second beta of iOS 10, but still includes some major new features not found in prior betas, like Auto Unlock, Emergency SOS and Activity Sharing. We also detail a few smaller, useful enhancements in the stock Activity and Workout apps and some related new options added to the companion Watch app on the iPhone.
Some features of Apple’s operating systems are hardware-dependent, for one reason or another. iOS 10 and macOS Sierra are no exceptions. For example, Raise to Wake on iOS 10 requires devices with Apple’s embedded M9 motion coprocessor, currently found in the iPhone 6s/Plus and iPhone SE.
Following our preview of Auto Unlock, we noticed that commenters are wondering if this feature requires any special hardware so here are Apple’s official system requirements for Auto Unlock.
Auto Unlock, a new feature in macOS Sierra, gives you instant access to your Mac when you’re wearing an Apple Watch. As its marketing name suggest, Auto Unlock is seamless. You simply wake your Mac from sleep while wearing your watch, and boom—just like that, you’re logged in and ready to go, no password typing required. Here’s our entertaining video walkthrough of Auto Unlock and a detailed overview of the feature for those interested in its inner workings and intricacies.
We know OS X is now macOS, and the first major version is macOS Sierra. So what new features does it have? SVP of Software Engineering Craig Federighi is on stage at Apple’s WWDC keynote running through the new additions and improvements in the software, and there are some great ones.
The main focuses for this update are going to be Continuity, iCloud and “the fundamentals of the Mac experience.” The first big new feature for the group is Auto Unlock, which allows you to automatically unlock your Mac with your Apple Watch—meaning, if you have your Watch on, you don’t need to type in your password.