Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 were launched by the company alongside the iPhone 15 smartphone series at the company’s September launch event on Tuesday. While Apple didn’t introduce any major improvements to health metrics this year, the company did tease support for a new Double Tap gesture that will let users perform certain actions on the latest smartwatch models. These include stopping the timer, snoozing an alarm, or pausing music. However, you can also use the same gesture on some Samsung Galaxy Watch and Apple Watch models.
Both Apple and Samsung offer several features that allow users to use a few hand gestures to perform certain tasks. On compatible Galaxy Watch models it’s called Universal Gestures, as 9to5Google points out, while on an Apple Watch the feature is called AssistiveTouch. Both features can be used on recent smartwatch models from the two companies and require the use of updated software for the wearables.
You can use these finger and wrist gestures on any Apple Watch running Watch OS 8, which means it works on the Apple Watch Series 4 and later models, as well as the first-generation Apple Watch SE. You can open the Settings app on your Apple Watch and tap Accessibility > AssistiveTouch > Hand gestures. You can then choose from four options: Clamp, Double clamp, Squeeze, Double squeeze and customize the actions performed when using these gestures.
Likewise, if you have a smartwatch launched as part of the following series: Samsung Galaxy Watch 6, Galaxy Watch 5 and Galaxy Watch 4, you will have access to the Universal Gestures feature. You can go to the settings section on your Galaxy Watch running One UI Watch 5 and tap Accessibility > Interaction and agility > Universal gestures. Once the feature is enabled, you can choose between pinch and double squeeze, make a fist, and make a double fist to perform certain tasks. You can also shake your writing to enable the universal gesture feature.
Apple Watch owners can further customize the actions to perform tasks such as launching Siri, Apple Pay, showing all installed apps, switching to the previous app, and even pressing and holding the side button which can be used to open the turn off watch. We’ll learn more about how the new Double Tap gesture works with existing accessibility features on the new Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 models when the devices become available to consumers later this month.