You’ll Soon Be Able to Control an Apple Watch Using Hand Gestures

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Apple today previewed a long list of new accessibility features coming soon, including AssistiveTouch for the Apple Watch, which will allow users to control an Apple Watch without ever having to touch the display or controls.

Aided by on-device machine learning, the Apple Watch’s gyroscope, accelerometer, and heart rate sensor will be able to detect subtle differences in muscle movement and tendon activity, and these movements will allow users to navigate a cursor on the Apple Watch’s display through a series of hand gestures, like a pinch or a clench.
AssistiveTouch on the Apple Watch will enable customers who have limb differences to more easily answer incoming calls, control an on-screen motion pointer, access Notification Center and Control Center, and more.

Apple says AssistiveTouch for the Apple Watch will be available with a software update. The feature will likely be part of watchOS 8, which is expected to be unveiled alongside iOS 15, macOS 12, and tvOS 15 at WWDC 2021 next month.

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