Apple is killing Force Touch on the Apple Watch with watchOS 7

Force Touch options
Force Touch options (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple is ending support for Force Touch in watchOS 7.
  • Apple announced the change in an update to its Human Interface Guidelines.
  • Developers will need to move menu items to a different location.

Apple has announced that it is ending support for Force Touch on Apple Watch with watchOS 7. Developers are being told to move menu items accessed through the feature to somewhere else.

Force Touch allows Apple Watch users to firmly press on the display to reveal additional menu options in an Apple Watch app. The feature is similar to 3D Touch, which was also removed from the new iPhone 11 models.

Apple's Human Interface Guidelines have been updated and warn developers that Force Touch will no longer continue to work on watchOS 7. It recommends that, for those who have the feature built into their apps, to move those menu items elsewhere to avoid having them disappear.

"Firm press and long press. In versions of watchOS before watchOS 7, people could press firmly on the display to do things like change the watch face or reveal a hidden menu called a Force Touch menu. In watchOS 7 and later, system apps make previously hidden menu items accessible in a related screen or a settings screen. If you formerly supported a long-press gesture to open a hidden menu, consider relocating the menu items elsewhere."

This change to watchOS 7 indicates that the Apple Watch Series 6 will most likely drop Force Touch as a feature, similar to how Apple dropped 3D Touch from its newest iPhone models.

Apple's new approach to the Apple Watch appears to differ in how it changed Force Touch interactions on the iPhone. While users were instructed to change from a physical press to a long press on iOS, it appears that Apple is ditching the hidden menu altogether in watchOS.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.