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watchOS 9.6.1 Fixes Bug Affecting Parkinson’s Disease Apps

Apple has released watchOS 9.6.1 to fix a bug that “prevents access to motion data for apps that use the Movement Disorder API to track tremors and symptoms associated with Parkinson’s disease.” The release notes mention no other changes, nor are there any security fixes with CVE entries. Unless you use a watchOS app that you know incorporates the Movement Disorder API, I can’t see any reason to install this update until it’s convenient.

watchOS 9.6.1 release notes

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Comments About watchOS 9.6.1 Fixes Bug Affecting Parkinson’s Disease Apps

Notable Replies

  1. Is it my imagination or does this update cause the battery to drain quickly? I updated last night before I went to bed, with a full charge, and was surprised to see the battery level had dropped more than 25% of its charge. It doesn’t usually drop this far when I’m sleeping.

  2. watchOS updates often require that internal caches and indexes be refreshed, so it’s not unusual for battery life to get worse for a day or two after updating. If it continues after that, some troubleshooting would be warranted.

  3. If you see dramatic battery drain like that on an Apple Watch, I always suggest simply powering off and power on again; you may also want to do the same with the iPhone. Most times that solves the issue.

    As for this version: since I’m not affected by the issue, I’m not rushing to install the update. Because the watch is almost always on my wrist, upgrading requires me to do so manually, so I’ll likely wait until the next version. That said: I’d be really surprised if a minor bug fix caused significant battery drain like this.

  4. Does anyone use/have experience with any app that actually uses the Movement Disorder API’s?

    I would be fascinated to hear about any experience with them and how they work/what they do, for a loved one.

    Many thanks, all.

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