Developers have come up with endlessly clever uses for interactive widgets. I love testing them all, but one type is beginning to stick more than others. It’s the widgets for apps that require quick interactions when you’re in the middle of something else. Turning off the lights in my home office when I’m finished working for the day, toggling work timers as I switch from task to task, and then checking off those tasks as I complete them are all perfect interactions for widgets that require minimal switching away from whatever I’m doing. Hopefully, that means fewer distractions and, in turn, a more productive day.
But not everything is about peak efficiency and checklists. Sometimes, you just want to relax, which widgets can help with, too. One of my favorite apps to help with that, which recently added interactive widget support, is TV Remote by Adam Foot. Foot’s app is one I already used with my LG C2 TV, but it’s the app’s new widgets that have graduated it to a regular part of my TV routine.
David Smith announced the release of Pedometer++ 5.0 today, and it looks like a big one. Smith says 5.0 has been rewritten from the ground up using SwiftUI and includes:
- Dynamic Type support
- Workout tracking, which was previously Watch-only, is now available on the iPhone too
- Live Activities that display distance and duration data or a map and distance preview are available in multiple styles
- Map-based routes can be added by transferring GPX files to the iPhone app using the iOS share sheet, which then syncs them to your Apple Watch
- Saved and favorite routes can be added to the Apple Watch too
- Once on the Watch, routes can be used in a new maps-based workout tracking mode, which displays them live
- The Apple Watch Ultra’s Action button can be used to start a walk quickly or to switch between map and metric views in the Watch app
I’m looking forward to giving this update a try. I’ve enjoyed using Footpath’s map integration as I explore North Carolina, and I’m curious to see how the apps compare.
Pedometer++ 5.0 is available as a free download on the App Store. Some features, including workouts, require a subscription.
When Live Activities debuted with iOS 16.1, a long list of apps supported the feature. There were some great examples, like the ten apps I covered in October and Timery, which was updated shortly thereafter. Because developers didn’t have a lot of time to prepare their apps for Live Activities, I expected a steady stream of updates that take advantage of the feature, but that hasn’t happened. Live Activity support is still being added to apps, but I thought I’d have more interesting, innovative examples to share by now, but I don’t.
Still, I’d be remiss if I didn’t follow up October’s story with a few additions to my favorite examples of Live Activities. I’m sure there are some I’ve missed and others that will be released in the future, which we’ll cover in the future, but today, I’m going to focus on Dark Noise, Shelf, and Lock Launcher.
The headlining feature of iOS 16.1 is Live Activities, which allows apps to display status information in the Dynamic Island and on the Lock Screen after a user closes an app. I’ve looked at over 40 new and updated apps and instead of just listing them, I thought I’d share a collection of the most innovative and useful ones that I’ve tried so far. This is just part 1 of this story. I’ll be back soon with even more as I continue to test the apps I’ve discovered.