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Apple Watch Apps: Watch Face

The Apple Watch ships with a variety of watch faces that users can swap on a whim – for example, I’m currently rocking the Mickey face you may have seen in some pictures and screenshots. But aside from the default options preloaded on the device, you can’t yet choose any other type of watch face. In fact, if you were hoping to see new watch faces begin popping up in the App Store, you’re completely out of luck for the time being, because Apple has banned apps that do nothing but tell time.

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As 9to5Mac discovered, the company has added a new provision to its App Store Review Guidelines that says “Watch Apps whose primary function is telling time will be rejected.”

Apple has not explained why it chose to do this. The basic time-telling app is a core feature of the Watch, which Apple might want to tightly control. On the other hand, developers could come up with interesting new watch face options that users will appreciate, so Apple might eventually open this feature to developers.

What’s clear is that Apple is considering the option of adding more watch faces in future updates, although it’s not known when that will happen. “Apple Watch includes a variety of watch faces, any of which you can customize to suit you,” the Help Guide said. “Check frequently for software updates; the set of watch faces that follows might differ from what you see on your Apple Watch.”

Apple has so far rejected all WatchKit apps that do little more than tell time.

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he closely follows the events in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises. Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.