Wearable Tech

WatchKit to help Apple developers build for your wrist

Apple's WatchKit will help developers build apps and services for the company's new smartwatch.

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Wanna-be Apple Watch developers, meet WatchKit.

Along with announcing the Apple Watch for consumers at its product event Tuesday, Apple also said it will help developers make apps and services for the smartwatch, with its new WatchKit.

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Apple announced WatchKit to help developers build for its new smartwatch. James Martin/CNET

"WatchKit allows developers to create rich, actionable items with notifications," Kevin Lynch, a former Adobe executive who left to work on the Apple Watch, said at Apple's event on Tuesday morning.

WatchKit will let developers build third-party apps for the watch, as they've built apps for the iPhone and iPad.

Some third-party apps are already available for the wearable, including Twitter, American Airlines, Starwood Hotels (for unlocking your room door), Pinterest, BMW (with a car locator service), Honeywell (for connected home control) and others.

"The cleanliness of the design will make it usable. I think my mom could use one of these, but I'm not sure that's true of some of the other [Android Wear] devices that have come out so far," said Jeff Smith, CEO of Smule, which builds mobile music-making apps. Smule was one of the first third-party iPhone apps available.

Apple has not revealed when WatchKit will be available to developers. The Apple Watch itself won't be available until spring 2015, Apple said.