What’s New Comes In WatchOS 10.2 Release Candidate (21S364)?

The WatchOS 10.2 Release Candidate (build 21S364) has recently been seeded to developers and public beta testers, bringing us one step closer to the public release of WatchOS 10.2. This update comes after four developer betas and over two months of testing.

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WatchOS 10.2 promises to deliver some helpful improvements and bug fixes for Apple Watch users. While there are no groundbreaking new features, the update focuses on refinements that will enhance the overall user experience.

Some of the most notable changes impact Siri, music/podcast playback, watch faces, workouts, and volume control in Fitness+ sessions. Many of the new capabilities take advantage of technologies specific to the newest Apple Watch models, like the Series 9 and Ultra 2.

Keep reading for an overview of the key improvements coming in WatchOS 10.2, along with details on compatibility for different Apple Watch generations.

New Features and Enhancements

The WatchOS 10.2 Release Candidate brings the following new features and enhancements:

Access Health App Data with Siri

Siri on Apple Watch can now provide summaries of health and fitness data tracked in the Health app. For example, users can ask Siri to share their total step count for the day or weekly exercise minutes.

This feature is currently only supported on the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 due to the more advanced sensors and Siri performance.

Automatic Now Playing View

When you approach a HomePod mini or 2nd generation HomePod currently playing media, the Now Playing screen will automatically display on your Apple Watch. This allows quick access to playback controls and song details.

Compatibility extends back to the Apple Watch Series 6 and newer models, as well as the Apple Watch Ultra.

Customizable Watch Face Switching

A new setting allows users to switch watch faces by swiping left/right on the display. This offers a faster way to cycle through various watch face designs instead of repeatedly pressing the display.

The customizable watch face switching is available across all WatchOS 10.2 compatible Apple Watch models.

Confirm Ending Workouts

To prevent accidental taps, WatchOS 10.2 adds an optional setting to have users confirm workout endings with an on-screen button. This should help avoid accidentally stopping tracked activities early.

Like the watch face switching, customizable workout endings are available on all compatible Apple Watch versions.

Adjust Volume Balance in Fitness+

WatchOS 10.2 enables separate volume controls for music vs. trainer voiceovers in most Apple Fitness+ workouts. A new slider in the Now Playing screen lets users easily prioritize one audio channel over the other.

So if you want to better hear the trainer over your workout playlist, you can adjust volumes appropriately.

Bug Fixes

Alongside the new features, WatchOS 10.2 also resolves some notable bugs:

  • An issue causing watch faces added from iPhone to not sync has been fixed.
  • Other miscellaneous performance and stability enhancements are included.

Compatible Apple Watch Models

WatchOS 10.2 is compatible with these Apple Watch models:

  • Apple Watch Ultra
  • Apple Watch Series 4 and later

It is not compatible with the original Apple Watch, Series 1, Series 2, or Series 3.

For the best experience with all new features and capabilities, WatchOS 10.2 requires an Apple Watch Series 6 or newer. See the table below for a compatibility overview:

Apple Watch ModelCompatible with WatchOS 10.2Access to All New Features
Ultra 2YesYes
Series 9YesYes
Series 8YesNo
Series 7YesNo
Series 6YesNo
Series 5YesNo
Series 4YesNo


While not a monumental update, WatchOS 10.2 still provides some helpful refinements to the Apple Watch experience. Key highlights include Siri integration with health data, customizable watch faces, confirming workout endings, and enhanced audio control for Fitness+.

Compatibility extends back to the Apple Watch Series 4, but newer models like the Series 9 or Ultra 2 are required to access all the latest features.

With the release candidate now out, we expect WatchOS 10.2 to see a public launch in the very near future. The update keeps advancing the Apple Watch platform with the latest capabilities for optimal utility on your wrist.

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