Apple Watch details reportedly revealed through leaked app

An iPhone app that manages settings for the Apple Watch purportedly offers more clues as to how the smartwatch will work, according to 9to5Mac.

The Apple Watch is scheduled for release this spring. James Martin/CNET

Apple has already revealed a few tidbits about its upcoming smartwatch. But a leaked iPhone app may have exposed more details about how the wearable device will function.

Known as the Apple Watch "Companion" app for iPhone, the software apparently will let watch owners manage settings for apps and for connectivity with the iPhone. Purported screenshots of the app published Tuesday by Apple-focused news site 9to5Mac spill the beans on several of the app's key features.

The Apple Watch is set to debut this spring. The smartwatch will mark Apple's entry into the wearables market, which already features devices from such major players as Samsung, Motorola, LG and Sony. Although product lineups are growing at a quick clip, wearables have yet to truly take off with consumers.

Apple's challenges will be to out-do other vendors and to convince consumers they want a device that acts as both a smartwatch and a health-and-fitness tracker.

One of the specific obstacles with smartwatches rests in their size and lack of a keyboard. How do you easily and quickly manage such a device? Screenshots of the Companion app seemingly show that Apple has tried to come up with enough options to control the watch without too much hassle.

So what do the screenshots reveal? A lot, according to 9to5Mac.

You can customize a Monogram clock face, for example, by adding your initials. When your iPhone receives a new notification, a red dot will appear on the clock. And you can track a stock by watching its activity on the clock face.

Since the Apple Watch has no virtual keyboard, you respond to instant messages with your voice. You can set up default text replies and can choose not to receive text alerts, either from anyone or just from certain people.

Via the Accessibility settings, you'll have a variety of ways to navigate and use the watch. A VoiceOver feature will speak any text that appears on the screen. You'll be able to zoom in on the screen by double tapping and can pan around by moving two fingers.

For security, you set up a four-number passcode, just like on the iPhone and iPad. That passcode will be needed to use Apple Pay. Enter the wrong passcode 10 times, and there will be an option to wipe the data on the watch.

For fitness buffs, you can set specific features, such as reminders of how long you've been sitting, how much activity you've accomplished over a certain number of hours and how well you've fared at exercise goals. You can turn on heart-rate tracking to figure out how many calories you've burned and also note your body movements.

Finally, the Companion app apparently will show you the available storage of the watch as well as the number of songs, photos and apps stored on it. You'll be able to manage all your apps from the Apple Watch homescreen.

Even if the leak is accurate, the app will likely continue to evolve before Apple releases its smartwatch.

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