Apple today announced a new rule that affects software development for its Apple Watch wearable. Essentially, the company is mandating that all apps that developers build be able to access the Internet over Wi-Fi, rather than just through a local iPhone.
“Starting June 1, 2016, all new watchOS apps submitted to the App Store must be native apps built with the watchOS 2 SDK [software development kit] or later,” Apple said in a blog post.
The watchOS 2 SDK became available last year. Apple has not said how many Apple Watches it has sold.
It can be frustrating when an app doesn’t work because there’s no iPhone handy to provide an Internet connection. Apple introduced “native apps” that run on the Watch to solve that problem. Now Apple is clearly trying to ensure that new apps for the Watch will not be bogged down by connectivity issues.