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Nike+ Run Club app updated with new Apple Watch Nike+ features ahead of device launch

In preparation of this week's release of the Nike+ version of Apple Watch Series 3, Nike on Monday updated its Nike+ Run Club app with a new Audio Guided Runs feature, a social networking function called Cheers and other features highlighted during the device's unveiling last month.

Nike+ Run Club version 5.9 is the first to include Audio Guided Runs, a special feature that pairs workouts from Nike coaches, athletes and celebrities with curated streaming music playlists. Among those lending their voice to the special workout feature are distance runner Mo Farah and comedian Kevin Hart, the latter of whom starred in a series of Nike+ Apple Watch ads in January.

Audio Guided Runs will be available on both iPhone and Apple Watch, though the requirement for streaming music access suggests Apple Watch models prior to Series 3 will need to remain tethered to paired iPhone for the function to work.

A new social networking feature called Cheers is also included on both iPhone and the corresponding watchOS app. With Cheers, users can send out a notification when they go on a run and receive "cheers," or encouraging messages, from friends to keep motivated. The function can be accessed on Apple Watch by swiping left to Settings.

Other enhancements are specific to Apple Watch, including a new activity history detailing a user's last five runs. On Apple Watch Series 3, users can retrieve elevation data on runs performed without a paired iPhone. Previously, Nike+ Run Club required an iPhone to deliver barometer data for elevation calculations, but that functionality is now available to Apple Watch Series 3 owners thanks to the device's advanced sensor stack.

Finally, both iOS and watchOS apps benefit from unnamed bug fixes and performance improvements.

Nike+ Run Club is a free 198MB download from the App Store.

The new Apple Watch Nike+, an Apple Watch Series 3 with a custom band, watch faces and preloaded version of Nike+ Run Club, launches on Thursday, Oct. 5. GPS only versions of the device start at $329, while GPS + Cellular iterations come with a $70 premium.