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Major apps abandoning Apple Watch, including Google Maps, Amazon & eBay [u]

In recent months, major companies that offered dedicated Apple Watch apps have since abandoned the platform, quietly removing support for watchOS in updates submitted to the App Store.




In the last few weeks, the latest update for Google Maps on iOS ditched support for the Apple Watch. Its removal was not mentioned in the release notes, and Google has not indicated whether support for watchOS will be reinstated.

It's the same story with Amazon and eBay, both of which previously included Apple Watch support in their iOS apps. Both were updated in late April, and as of Monday, neither includes an Apple Watch app.




While shopping on Amazon from your wrist may seem somewhat superfluous, the eBay app for Apple Watch did allow users to track bid statuses. And obviously the utility of glanceable directions from Google Maps —a service many believe is better than Apple Maps —on the watch is apparent.

There are other, scattered examples of Apple Watch apps being removed from iOS updates, including retailer Target (which does still offer watchOS integration with its Cartwheel app).




The fact that these high-profile removals have gone largely unnoticed could be a sign that the apps simply were not widely used. In contrast, removing iPad support from an iOS app, for example, would likely be noticed immediately and generate headlines.

AppleInsider contacted Google, Amazon and eBay to find out why watchOS support was removed from their iOS apps, and whether Apple Watch functionality will be reintroduced. We'll update with official statements if they are provided.

Update: Google later commented on its decision, saying, "We removed Apple Watch support from our latest iOS release but expect to support it again in the future."