iOS 8.2: iPhone update installs useless Apple Watch ad on home screens

The companion app is meant to be used for changing settings on the watch, but can't do anything until it's out

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The Independent Tech

Apple's latest iOS update puts an Apple Watch ad that can't be deleted on the iPhone's home screen.

The app — which is not the first time Apple has force installed a product or ad — is intended to be used to control the Apple Watch, released last night. But since the watch won't be out until April, it can only be used to watch videos about Apple's wearable.

The app shows up with the name "Apple Watch" on the home screen, though it is more commonly referred to as the companion app. It shows a small picture of the watch, taken in profile. Clicking on it allows users to pair the watch with their phone, watch videos introducing the watch and visit a special version of the App Store.

Apple Watch owners will use the iPhone app to download new software for the watch and change its settings. Many have complained that those functions could easily have been created within the App Store and the Settings pages.

The update also brings bug fixes and stability improvements, according to Apple's release notes, and makes changes to the Health app. One of those fixes the Freak vulnerability, which was made public earlier this month, and so the update is recommended for safety reasons.

Apple has added new apps like its tie-up with Nike to the phone in recent years, with users unable to turn them off. The Apple Watch companion could also be the equivalent of the U2 album from September's event — which was sent to phones straight after the event, leading to complaints and Apple releasing a tool to delete the songs.

It has also been suggested that Apple's new streaming service — based partly on Beats Music, which it bought last year — will do the same.