Apple has made the fourth beta for iOS 8.2 available to developers early this week and, according to reports, it includes Apple Watch connectivity.
9to5Mac has discovered that the latest version of the operating system will connect to the smartwatch via Bluetooth. There will also be a bespoke Apple Watch application for syncing the two devices.
Reports indicate that pairing the Apple Watch with an iPhone is a relatively simple process. Under the Bluetooth setting section users can select “Other Devices” and choose their handset, providing the app has already been downloaded.
Previous rumours have suggested that the Apple Watch app will be used to download software onto the iPhone, which can then be installed on the wearable gadget. The app is also likely to control the smartwatch’s settings. It is thought that by using the iPhone to deal with the majority of the computational demands, the battery life of the Apple Watch will be extended.
Last year, Apple promised that its first entry into the wearable market would arrive by early 2015, but aside from that news, there has been no official word on a release date. However, the latest rumours indicate that the Apple Watch will be available in March for a retail price of $349 (£231).
It would seem likely that the general release of iOS 8.2, alongside the dedicated Apple Watch app, will launch during the same time period.
While wearable gadgets have been much hyped by the technology industry, particularly at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, they have struggled to gain much traction with consumers. The release of the Apple Watch, therefore, is a major landmark for the wearable industry, with the potential to bring smartwatches to a mainstream audience.
Read more: It looks like the Apple Watch isn’t far away
If the Cupertino-based company can convince even a fraction of its iPhone users to purchase an Apple Watch, it could kick-start the wearable market.