How to use the Apple Watch Ultra’s Action button

How to use the Apple Watch Ultra’s Action button
The Action button adds another layer of personalization | Illustration by Samar Haddad / The Verge

The Apple Watch Ultra introduced one of the most significant design tweaks to the Apple Watch since its inception — the Action button. While every other Apple Watch has two physical controls, the Action button is a third that’s meant to help outdoor athletes pause workouts, turn on the flashlight, call for help with a siren, and more. The main logic is that, unlike touchscreens, physical buttons are immune to sweaty fingers and gloves.

While it’s likely the Action button will evolve over time, at launch, it’s essentially a set of preselected shortcuts or “actions.” Your options are Workout, Stopwatch, Waypoint, Backtrack, Dive, Flashlight, and Shortcuts. Some of these actions have secondary functions dubbed “gestures.” Within each…

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