Apple has unveiled the new features coming in watchOS 5 at its WWDC 2018 conference in the US.
The company has added improvements across the fitness and connectivity features of its watchOS operating system.
With watchOS 5, Apple Watch owners will be able to challenge activity-sharing friends to a seven-day competition, where users compete to close rings.
Progress is updated as the week progresses and users are kept up to date on the status of the competition via notifications.
Apple is also adding new workout types for yoga and hiking, along with cadence tracking and rolling mile pace for runners.
The new operating system will also allow the Apple Watch to automatically detect when users begin a workout, and when they end it.
Apple then introduced a new way of communicating using Apple Watch, called Walkie-Talkie.
Adding contacts to Walkie-Talkie requires users to send a one-time request to another Watch owner, after which they can trade short voice recordings instantly over either Wi-Fi or cellular connections.
WatchOS 5 will also bring an updated Siri watch face, which supports live sports, commute time notifications, and a heart rate monitor.
Additionally, Apple Watch users will no longer need to say “Hey Siri” to address the digital assistant – and can instead just raise their wrist and begin issuing commands.
WatchOS5 will also support interactive notifications, allowing users to take actions immediately from within a compatible notification.
Users will be able to open links in a streamlined web browser from within the Messages app on watchOS 5, added Apple.
Apple has added support for a number of third-party music applications, too, and said the newest version of watchOS will get the Apple Podcasts app.
WatchOS 5 will be available this year as a free update for Apple Watch Series 1 and later, and requires iPhone 5s or later on iOS 12.