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I'm finding the Apple Watch to be surprisingly capable for browsing the web! If I send myself an iMessage with a link to nytimes.com, I can log in to my New York Times account, scroll through the homepage, and read full articles. Ditto for Amazon, and even social media websites like Twitter!

The only problem is, I really don't want to do my web browsing inside of the Messages app! If someone sends me a text, I can't read their message without closing out of the current web page. It's also confusing in the app switcher.

Are there any Apple Watch apps which act as a simple wrapper for Apple's existing webkit implementation? I've seen Parrity, but that's not what I want—Parrity renders websites remotely and then provides a screenshot for the watch. I want to use the version of webkit that Apple built into WatchOS.

In the event that there's some sort of App Store policy against apps like this, I have an Apple Developer account which I can use for sideloading.

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  • in case you don't need the Mail app, it proposes the same webkit as with the Message app
    – tama
    Sep 27, 2022 at 17:54
  • I use Mail too. :( Sep 27, 2022 at 19:51

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Apple's WebKit-based web browser implementation on the Apple Watch is not available for third party developers to use in app.

If you yourself are a developer, you can just use WKWebView as a private API to render web pages in a side-loaded app. You cannot however distribute it on the App Store.

A more practical and straightforward approach is to use the built-in browser that you have found inside the Messages app. The same is inside the Mail app, and you can also access it by searching the web with Siri.

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  • "If you yourself are a developer, you can just use WKWebView as a private API to render web pages in a side-loaded app." Can you point me to an existing project or source code repository that does this? I realize it's technically simple, but as I've never made even a "hello world" apple watch app... well, I'd rather not spend an entire weekend futzing around. Sep 27, 2022 at 19:54

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