General

6 years on the Apple Watch

Reflecting back on our time in the App Store

Earlier this week we launched our latest and greatest Apple Watch app to the App Store. ETA 3 for Apple Watch is a fully featured and an exceptionally advanced app that will keep you informed of travel time and traffic around you. On the back of this release we thought we'd indulge ourselves in a quick reflection on the evolution of ETA on Apple's most personal device.

ETA arrived on the Apple Watch in June of 2015, two short months after the launch of the device itself. Planning for us though started almost 7 years ago to the day when the Apple Watch was previewed at Apple's September 2014 event. It was immediately evident that ETA's functionality in harmony with the technology on the Apple Watch could combine to create an unrivalled experience.

A glanceable app

Our first version of the app mirrored Apple's focus for version one of the Apple Watch. At the beginning Apple Watch apps were just extensions of their iPhone counterparts. They were lightweight, providing quick access to the data you had on your iPhone, simply presented in a focused design. Glances we're a big part of this, swipe up from your watch face to access a snapshot if data from your favourite apps. Swipe left or right to cycle between them. On the app side, ETA was true to its focus providing a quick view of travel time and traffic. Via each location you could tap to launch directions.

Version 1 of our Apple Watch app was a huge hit and over the first few days tens of thousands of users downloaded ETA daily to enjoy the experience on their new Apple devices.

A quick glance at travel time and traffic

A quick glance at travel time and traffic

Tap the map to get directions

Tap the map to get directions

Hello watch face

With the release of watchOS 2, developers had access to adding app experiences to the watch face of Apple Watch. This was via what is called 'complications'. Complications could come in all sorts of sizes displaying content in varying formats. Arguably the coolest feature was Time Travel. On your watch face simply scroll the Digital Crown to go forward in time. With ETA this gave users the ability to see traffic predictions that in turn helped them plan when to travel.

Get future traffic status with a simple scroll

Get future traffic status with a simple scroll

Support for transit added

Support for transit added

Continual improvements

Over the proceeding years, ETA evolved alongside the Apple Watch as Apple added (and removed) features. Time travel quietly went to pasture but the engine we built to predict traffic lived on with a newly added 'Traffic Thermometer'. This was added to each location detail view in the Apple Watch app and was an immediate hit with users.

We added calendar integration as well as advanced control of the locations displayed on the watch face.

Traffic predictions via our 'Traffic Thermometer'

Traffic predictions via our 'Traffic Thermometer'

Full independence

Our latest chapter in the 'ETA on Apple Watch' journey is of course our release this week. It's jam packed with features including support for four travel modes (driving, transit, walking and now cycling), iCloud sync, full independence from your iPhone and comprehensive calendar integration. It even includes our new ETA workouts function allowing you to get active when commuting on foot or bike.

Redesigned dashboard

Redesigned dashboard

A unique progress view in ETA workouts

A unique progress view in ETA workouts

A more detailed summary of our latest update can be found via the list below.

What an incredible journey it's been over the last 6 years. While our new version 3 is the latest chapter, it certainly won't be our last. Look for more great updates and improvements as the Apple Watch evolves in the years to come.



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