Download watchOS 9 Final on Apple Watch [Ultimate Guide]

Download and install watchOS 9 final on Apple Watch.

Apple Watch software update watchOS 9 final is available for download. Here's how to download it right now on Series 7, 6, 5, SE, and more.

watchOS 9 Final Download Arrives with New Workout Types, New Watch Faces, Medication Reminders, and More - How to Update, What is New

Although not as exciting as iOS 16, watchOS 9 is a massive update for those who love using the Apple Watch for tracking workouts and getting a glance at their everyday routine. There are a ton of new features to look forward to for Watch lovers, and we will drop the entire feature set of the watchOS 9 final update below for you to go through and see what Apple has packed in this year.

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New watchOS 9 Features and Changes

New Calendar app in watchOS 9.

watchOS 9 brings great new ways to keep you active, healthy, and connected with Apple Watch. You have more ways to train and measure your workouts, a completely redesigned compass app, a new app to track your medications, more powerful sleep tracking with sleep stages, and better insights and support for your heart health if you have been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation.

Watch Faces

  • Astronomy now displays current cloud coverage and star map
  • Lunar includes a Chinese, Hebrew, or Islamic lunar calendar wrapped around a moon with a live rendering of moon phases
  • Playtime includes animated numbers designed by Chicago artist Joi Fulton with editing options for background colors
  • Metropolitan features a type-driven watch face with numbers that dynamically change in style and weight as you turn the Digital Crown
  • Nike Analog, Nike Bounce, Nike Compact, Nike Digital, and Nike Hybrid, all with a tappable Nike Swoosh that launches Nike Run Club, are now available for more models of Apple Watch
  • Rich Complications, Chinese script options, and background color editor available on Breathe, California, Modular, Typograph, and more
  • Portraits now support portraits of dogs and cats, and landscapes with the ability to customize the color of the background or entire photo
  • Ability to choose the watch face displayed when a Focus is active

Workout

  • Ability to customize and scroll through multiple Workout Views during a workout, including Splits, Segments, Activity Rings, and more
  • Heart Rate Zones view uses max and resting heart rate to create personalized zones and shows time spent in each zone
  • Elevation view displays current elevation and elevation gain and visually maps your elevation progress during Outdoor Run, Outdoor Cycle, Outdoor Wheelchair Run Pace, Hiking, Outdoor Walk, and Outdoor Wheelchair Walk Pace
  • Running Power view, measured in watts, shows an instantaneous measure of how much power is generated during your run (Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 6 and later)
  • Running Form Metrics, including Stride Length, Ground Contact Time, and Vertical Oscillation available in Workout Views to monitor and trend running efficiency (Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 6 and later)
  • Custom Workout enables you to create Workouts with repeating sets of intervals that can be based on a time, distance, or an open goal with automatic or manual advancement to your next set
  • Pacer provides a training experience to help you sustain a desired pace using alerts and a dedicated workout view
  • Multisport Workout supports duathlon or triathlon training with automatic detection of Open Water/Pool Swim, Indoor/Outdoor Cycle, Indoor/Outdoor Run, and transitions to the next leg
  • Workout alerts can be customized for metrics like pace, power, cadence, and heart rate zones
  • Pool Swim workouts automatically detect kickboard
  • SWOLF swimming efficiency metric calculated as stroke count plus time to complete lap

Fitness+

  • Trainer guidance is displayed on-screen, including targets for Intensity, strokes per minute for Rowing, revolutions per minute for Cycling, and incline percentage for Treadmill
  • Trainer guidance and personal fitness metrics displayed on-screen for compatible third-party TVs and devices

Compass

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  • Redesigned compass app with more in-depth information and zoomable views (Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 5 and later)
  • The primary face supports both an analog compass dial and a digital view of the current bearing and direction
  • Zoomed view provides an analog view of bearing plus your elevation, incline, and coordinates
  • Compass Waypoints allow you to mark your position or point of interest (Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 6 and later)
  • Backtrack uses GPS to track your historic path in case you get lost or disoriented (Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 6 and later)

Sleep

  • Sleep stage tracking uses data from the accelerometer and heart rate sensor to detect time spent in REM, Core, and Deep sleep, as well as awake
  • A comparisons chart provides a view of heart rate and respiratory rate alongside time asleep in the Health app on the iPhone

Medications

  • Capabilities to log as-needed and scheduled medications, including the amount and time taken
  • Ability to view medication schedule and what you have logged for the day
  • Reminders to log scheduled medications
  • Medications complication to see your schedule or quickly open the app

AFib History

  • Weekly notifications with an estimate of the percentage of time spent in atrial fibrillation during the previous calendar week
  • Highlights show which day of week and time of day when AFib is highest
  • Tracking of lifestyle factors that may influence time spent in AFib, including Exercise, Sleep, Weight, Alcohol Consumption, and Mindful Minutes in the Health app on iPhone
  • Sharable PDF for richer conversations with healthcare providers
  • Support for users 22 years or older with the diagnosis of atrial fibrillation

Family Setup

  • The Podcasts app is now available and includes the ability to search, download, follow shows, and explore curated content
  • Third-party email support extended to Yahoo and Outlook
  • Editing and sharing contact photos now available

Accessibility

  • Expanded Quick Actions with AssistiveTouch for play and pause in Now Playing, pause and resume in Workout, take a photo using Camera Remote, and toggle between map view and turn-by-turn directions in Maps
  • Bluetooth keyboard pairing with Apple Watch
  • Apple Watch Mirroring lets you control Apple Watch remotely from your paired iPhone via AirPlay with support for assistive technologies like Voice Control or Switch Control as an alternative to tapping the Apple Watch display

Other features and improvements:

  • Low Power Mode maintains core features of the Apple Watch while temporarily disabling select background features such as always on display and heart health notifications to extend battery life
  • Support for international roaming allows you to stay connected to your cellular network while traveling abroad (Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 5 and later)
  • Expanded keyboard languages, including French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, and Spanish available on Apple Watch Series 7 and later
  • Communication safety setting in Screen Time gives parents the ability to enable warnings for children when they receive or attempt to send photos that contain nudity in Messages
  • Cycle deviation notifications alert you if your logged menstrual cycles show a pattern of infrequent periods, irregular periods, prolonged periods, or persistent spotting
  • New Cardio Recovery metric estimated by Apple Watch available in the Health app
  • Reminders app updated to support editing so you can add key details like location, tags, and due times
  • The Calendar app redesigned to support the creation of new calendar events with the ability to switch to day, list, and week views
  • Enhanced Podcast experience with support for search, ability to follow and unfollow shows, and discover new content in Listen Now
  • Dock updated to show apps running in the background at the top
  • Notifications are redesigned with the streamlined slimline banner when actively using Apple Watch

Some features may not be available for all countries or all areas, for more information, visit:

https://www.apple.com/watchos/feature-availability/

For information on the security content of Apple software updates, please visit this website:

https://support.apple.com/kb/HT201222

watchOS 9 Compatible Apple Watch Models

watchOS 9 drops support for the Series 3 Apple Watch. If you have that model with you, we're sad to tell you that you will not get the latest update, and your wearable will forever linger on watchOS 8. But that does not mean, in any way, that your Apple Watch has become useless in any way. You can keep on using the Series 3 if you like, it's just so that it has reached the end of its life on the software end.

These are all the Apple Watch models that are compatible with the watchOS 9 final update:

Apple Watch models compatible with watchOS 9, from Apple's website.
  • Apple Watch Series 4
  • Apple Watch Series 5
  • Apple Watch SE 1 and 2
  • Apple Watch Series 6
  • Apple Watch Series 7
  • Apple Watch Series 8
  • Apple Watch Ultra

We're really glad that the Apple Watch Series 4 gets the new watchOS 9 update, but we have this inkling that Apple might drop support for it completely next year. Maybe I'm wrong here. Who knows!

Can I Downgrade Back to watchOS 8?

It's a question a lot of people are going to ask before upgrading to watchOS 9. The short answer is no. If you think you will not like the update already, now is the time to make that decision. It's probably a good hunt to call up that friend of yours and ask them how the new update is, or even better, wait for initial reviews to come out for the new watchOS 9 update before you make the decision to upgrade.

watchOS 8 update.

Long answer short - the answer is no. You cannot downgrade back to watchOS 8 once you update to watchOS 9. There is no way you can do that - no special cable, no syncing with your PC, nothing of that sort, unlike an iPhone.

Download iOS 16 on iPhone in Order to Get watchOS 9

This is extremely important. If you do not upgrade to iOS 16, you will not get the watchOS 9 update on Apple Watch at all. It is an extremely important prerequisite and one which cannot be bypassed. In fact, it gets slightly weird - if you have an iPhone that will not get the iOS 16 update, but you have the latest Apple Watch, the watchOS 9 update will not be available for download.

In order to download iOS 16 on your iPhone, simply go to Settings > General > Software Update. Tap on Download and Install in order to initiate the update. This may take a while, but this is absolutely necessary before moving forward.

Also, check out the following:

Download watchOS 9 Final Update Over the Air

There are two ways to download watchOS 9 update on your (compatible) Apple Watch model. The first method involves initiating the download from your iPhone. It is super easy, and we will walk you through it one step at a time.

  • Make sure you have 50% or more battery life remaining on your Apple Watch. Once that is confirmed, place it on its magnetic charger. If you don't, the update will simply not move forward.
  • Make sure your iPhone is connected to a reliable Wi-Fi network. Go to Settings > Wi-Fi on your iPhone in order to connect to one.
  • Now, launch the Watch app on your iPhone from the Home Screen.
  • Tap on General and then go to Software Update.
  • Tap on Download and Install when the watchOS 9 update shows up.

This is the point the update will first download, will be verified, and then installed onto your device. This will take an unusually long time therefore do not panic at all if it's taking a while. Just leave the Apple Watch and iPhone together during the whole process.

Install watchOS 9 Straight from Apple Watch

Instead of fiddling with your iPhone, you do have the option to download the watchOS 9 final update straight to your Apple Watch. But, it still requires you to place your Apple Watch on its charger in order to install it. And yes, you still require iOS 16 installed on your iPhone in order to do this.

  • Make sure your Apple Watch is connected to a Wi-Fi network. Press the Digital Crown, go to Settings > Wi-Fi, and connect to Wi-Fi.
  • Press the Digital Crown on your Apple Watch to go to the Home Screen.
  • Find Settings and tap on it.
  • Now tap on General, then select Software Update.
  • The watchOS 9 update will show up here, and you can tap on it to initiate the download.
  • Now place your Apple Watch on its magnetic charger.

Clean Install watchOS 9 (Sort Of)

If you want to experience the watchOS 9 in the best possible manner. It's best to perform a factory reset of your Apple Watch before going ahead with the watchOS 9 update. Or, even after would do.

In order to factory reset your Apple Watch, press the Digital Crown, go to Settings, tap on General, scroll down and tap on Reset and then tap on Erase All Content and Settings. Enter your Apple Watch passcode if there is any.

You will lose all your settings once you do this.

Your Apple Watch will un-pair with your iPhone, and then you can set it up from scratch. If there's any new update available for Apple Watch, it will be installed at the initial setup.

The whole thing may take up to half an hour, but it's totally worth it if you want to experience watchOS 9 in the freshest manner possible.

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