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On Call Status at a Glance on the Apple Watch

James Leung ON Jan 20, 2016

Take a look at my Apple watch. When I take a look at it, I feel a need to rush. Why? Because it’s 3:30? Of course not. I rush because I have an obligation at that time. My need to remember the event at that time is so important that I have chosen to wear a device that gives me some basic information at the flick of a wrist.

And it’s not just me. If you’re sometimes on call, you have to know when and for how long. This information is crucial. And we engineers figure, what better way to complete the picture than to have the xMatters watch app tell you your on-call schedule at a glance?

At xMatters, each engineer gets to spend 5 percent of his or her time on an experimental project, and this project came out of it.

How it works
Apple watch offers important information that is quickly visible to the user in what it calls glances. For example, one default glance is the current weather.

We in Engineering figured that our on-call or maybe off-call date is just as important as the weather, so in an in-house proof of concept (POC), we have added your scheduling status as a glance.

We have added your on-call scheduling status as a glance on the Apple watch.

We have added your on-call scheduling status as a glance on the Apple watch.
Click for a larger image.

How it went down
Since version 2.11 of the xMatters iOS app, released in 2015, we have added the on-call schedule feature. It shows how long you’re on call or when your next on-call schedule is. There is also a filter to define on call. Whether you are the first person to be reached, or whether you will be reached at all in spite of escalation order, are two of the filter options.

To make the watch even more convenient. as a POC, we added the on-call schedule feature to the watch app as a glance. Here is how the two views compare.

Showing on-call status on the Apple watch.

Showing on-call status on the Apple watch.
Click for a larger image.

Showing off-call status on the Apple watch.

Showing off-call status on the Apple watch.
Click for a larger image.

What’s to come
Timepieces have helped us take control of our lives, and xMatters wants to provide you with the right information at the right time in a manner as personal and visible as a flick of a wrist. So we have this functionality in our back pocket. Would you like to see us roll it out? Add a comment to the blog or tweet us and let us know.

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