Apple on Monday released watchOS 5.2.1 to the general public, alongside routine software updates to its iOS, macOS and tvOS platforms. While watchOS 5.2.1 is a relatively minor update with few forward-facing changes, there are still some notable additions and features. Continue reading to browse 4+ new features and updates in watchOS 5.2.1.
2019 Pride Faces
While you won’t find them in Apple’s release notes, the company has added a couple of new Pride watch face options in watchOS 5.2.1. There are now two Pride options available in the software update, titled “2018” and “2019,” respectively.
The 2018 version has remained unchanged, while the 2019 Pride face has more vertical threads and a new animation when tapped. Apple has also added a new analog version of the Pride face, completed with watch hands instead of a digital readout.
Apple first debuted the 2018 Pride face at WWDC that year, alongside Pride band options that raised funds for LGBTQIA+ advocacy groups. While there aren’t any new 2019 Pride bands as of yet, Apple could unveil some in the near future.
Explorer Face Bug Fix
watchOS updates routinely contain bug fixes and performance improvements. In watchOS 5.2.1, Apple has patched a bug that could cause problems with the Explorer watch face for some users. (Presumably, watchOS 5.2.1 also contains smaller bug fixes not mentioned in the release notes.)
Essentially, the software bug — which was introduced in watchOS 5.2 — caused the minute and hour numbers on the Explorer face to disappear. In the latest watchOS update, that bug has now been fixed and the face should work normally.
ECG Support Expansion
Apple has expanded region support for the electrocardiogram (ECG) feature on its Apple Watch Series 4 devices. The feature is now available in Croatia, the Czech Republic, Iceland, Poland and Slovakia — presumably thanks to regulatory approval.
The Apple Watch ECG feature is a first-of-its-kind feature that lets users easily check their heart rate and heart rhythm on the go. In countries in which it is available, it can be accessed by going to the iOS Health app and tapping Health Data > Heart > Electrocardiogram (ECG).
Irregular Heart Rhythms Expansion
In addition to the expanded ECG availability, Apple is also making irregular heart rhythm notifications available in Croatia, the Czech Republic, Iceland, Poland and Slovakia. The life-saving feature is now available in those three countries on eligible devices.
Unlike the ECG feature, irregular heart rhythm notifications are available on the Apple Watch Series 2 and the Apple Watch Series 3. They can be enabled by going to the iOS Health app and navigating to Heart > Irregular Rhythm Notifications.
How to Update
Even though watchOS 5.2.1 isn’t packed with shiny new features or major improvements, it’s highly recommended that you still download and install to keep your Apple Watch running smoothly.
Users can download the update by charging their Apple Watch to at least 50 percent battery life, placing it on their charger, and keeping their iPhone nearby for the duration of the update. The update can be found in the iOS Watch app, under General > Software Update.