Apple Releases watchOS 4.3 With Portrait Nightstand Mode and iPhone Music Controls

Apple today released watchOS 4.3, the third major update to the watchOS 4 operating system that runs on the Apple Watch. watchOS 4.3 comes more than three months after the release of watchOS 4.2, the last major update that brought Apple Pay Cash.


watchOS 4.3 can be downloaded through the dedicated Apple Watch app on the iPhone by going to General --> Software Update. To install the new software, the Apple Watch needs to have at least 50 percent battery, it needs to be placed on a charger, and it needs to be in range of the iPhone.

watchOS 4.3 introduces support for Nightstand mode when the Apple Watch is positioned in a portrait orientation, a feature that was previously only available when the watch was placed in landscape orientation on its side.

Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos.

Today's update also reintroduces a much-desired feature that allows music playing on the iPhone to be controlled using the Music app on the Apple Watch.

In previous versions of watchOS, starting with watchOS 4, the Music app could only be used to control music playing on the watch itself. watchOS 4.3 returns pre-watchOS 4 functionality and once again allows you to select the music playing on your iPhone from the Apple Watch. With watchOS 4.3, you're also able to control playback and volume on the HomePod using the Apple Watch.

Other new features in watchOS 4.3 include a new charging animation when the Apple Watch is placed on the charger and a new app loading animation when opening up an app. You'll also now see your Activity data on the Siri watch face, and the battery complication more accurately reports battery life.

For more on the watchOS 4 operating system, make sure to check out our dedicated watchOS 4 roundup.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 4, watchOS 5
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution)


Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
20 weeks ago
Will this fix the problem with the Workout app freezing?
Rating: 9 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago

Will this fix the problem with the Workout app freezing?

Will this fix the problem of me freezing while using the Workout app? ;)
Rating: 6 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago
My Series 3 seems much snappier, I mean its noticeably quicker! Anyone else agree? Maybe Apple finally figured out not to rush updates?
Rating: 4 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago

How well does the series 0 work with this? I have issues since watchOS4. One could think planned obsolescence. In particular when I start a workout and than try the watch to play music to my Beats X.


It's the bomb. It's so much faster and snappier.
Rating: 4 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago
Wonder if this will fix the lag in the exercise app and the none existent breath reminders?
Rating: 4 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago
On the Series 2 the speed up for everything is very noticeable and to those that have issues with the workout app it's MUCH faster all around.
Rating: 2 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago

It's the bomb. It's so much faster and snappier.

I agree. Much faster on series 0.
Rating: 2 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago

The portrait nightstand mode is just bad. Why couldn't they just make the font a little smaller and have the time all on one line. Who reads the time on 2 lines?

Presumably so that people with glasses don’t need to put them on just to check the time in the middle of the night. Apple’s trying to substitute a clock radio here.

When I was 25, I would’ve scoffed at that notion since I had Superman vision. Bah! Make the font 5 pixels high on that Retina screen. I can read that from 10 feet away. Losers. Then past 40, presbyopia kicks in and you’re like ohh... crap, is this my life now? Damn, never mind.
Rating: 1 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago

Looking forward to having HomePod controls from my Apple Watch. Sometimes it gets tiring saying "Hey Siri" to the HomePod.

I can’t figure out where you can control the HomePod from. Only option I have is to use music on the iPhone and airplay to HomePod. Nothing shows up in the now playing tile.
Rating: 1 Votes
Avatar
20 weeks ago
I am so looking forward to the fix for Apple Music. Every time I tried to play music in my car, my watch would just complain that my Air Pods were not available. Then I had to wrestle my phone out of my pocket. Not the safest maneuver.
Rating: 1 Votes
[ Read All Comments ]