WatchOS 8 and macOS Monterey announced at WWDC 2021

  • Apple has announced watchOS 8 and macOS Monterey at the WWDC 2021 event
  • watchOS 8 brings with it respiratory tracking, new workout modes, redesigned Photos app, Always-on mode, Portraits watch face, and much more
  • macOS Monterey features Universal Control, AirPlay to Mac, Shortcuts, and a redesigned Safari app, among other things

Apple has announced watchOS 8 and macOS Monterey at the WWDC 2021 event that was held tonight, where the company also unveiled iOS 15 and iPadOS 15. watchOS 8 brings with a plethora of new features related to health tracking, fitness, sharing photos and music, watch faces, Breathe and Mindfulness apps, and much more. As for macOS Monterey for desktops, it brings Universal Control, Low Power Mode, Memoji on the login screen, redesigned Safari, AirPlay to Mac, and many other features. Let us have a look at all the new features of watchOS 8 and macOS Monterey.

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WatchOS 8 features

Apple watchOS 8

Respiratory tracking, new workout modes, and improved Breathe and Mindfulness apps

One of the main highlights of watchOS 8 is the respiratory rate tracking feature. As the name suggests, it tracks your breathing pattern to let you know about the irregularities in your breathing. According to Apple, this feature works while you are sleeping. Since we are on the topic, it is worth mentioning that Apple has improved the Breathe and Mindfulness apps for an even better experience. The Cupertino-based tech giant is yet to reveal the changes in detail. While watchOS 7 supports a ton of workout types, watchOS 8 is bringing two more workout modes, Pilates and Tai Chi.

Redesigned Photos app, new ways to compose messages, and Portraits watch face

WatchOS 8 has a new Photos app that allows you to share your memories with your loved ones. You can also caption the image while sharing it. Speaking of which, there is a new way to compose your message. You can just speak and the Apple Watch will convert it into text. You can then edit the text to make the required changes. You can use the crown to navigate through text and watchOS 8 also supports handwriting recognition. Apple is also making better use of photos by offering a new, Portraits watch face. It automatically creates watch faces based on your memories for you to personalize your watch.

Always-on mode, and redesigned Apple Music, Contacts, and Timer apps

There is also an Always-on mode for apps in watchOS 8. You can use this feature to prevent an app from closing down and the Apple Watch going back to the watch face. For example, you can use Always-on mode for the Calculator app so that it doesn’t close (or the screen doesn’t turn off) while you are doing lengthy calculations. watchOS 8 also has a redesigned Apple Music and Contacts app for a better user experience, and an improved Timer app with support for multiple timers. watchOS 8 enables you to unlock your car and find items using UWB and it can also show you ID cards stored in your Apple Wallet.

macOS Monterey features

Apple macOS Monterey

Universal Control

The most interesting feature of macOS Monterey is Universal Control. It allows you to use the trackpad and the keyboard on your MacBook to control your iPad as well as iMac. This makes it easier for you to navigate through multiple devices. Apple aims to improve the continuity between devices with Universal Control.

AirPlay to Mac

Most of you might know about AirPlay, it allows you to play music and videos from your iPhone to your Apple TV and compatible speakers. Well, AirPlay is now expanding to Mac. It means that you can now stream videos, music, and presentation from your iPhone or iPad directly to your iMac.


Shortcuts is another great feature that you get with macOS Monterey. It allows you to perform a number of actions with a single click. For example, you can set a shortcut to open Safari, iMovie, and Apple Music all at once. You click the shortcut and all those apps will set into motion.

Redesigned Safari

Safari is already one of the best web browsers out there. Apple is now improving Safari even further with macOS Monterey. The Cupertino-based tech giant has completely redesigned Safari with a new tab design that is more compact and modern looking and rearranged icons and other elements for a less visible clutter on the screen. Safari also brings a new feature called Tabs Group for you to easily create a group of tabs and reduce clutter further. 

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