Apple Watch Tips

Set up your Apple Watch

Learn how to set up your Apple Watch with your iPhone.



Before you begin

  • To set up and use your Apple Watch, you need an iPhone 5 or later with the latest version of iOS.
  • On your iPhone, go to Settings > Bluetooth and make sure that Bluetooth is on.
  • Make sure that your iPhone is connected to Wi-Fior a cellular network.
  • Put on your Apple Watch, and keep your Apple Watch and iPhone close together as they sync.

If you already set up your Apple Watch but want to use it with a different iPhone, you cantransfer your Apple Watch and its content to your new iPhone

Turn on your Apple Watch

To turn on your Apple Watch, press and hold the side button until you see the Apple logo. It might take a few minutes. Then select a language and choose a region. To scroll up or down, rotate the Digital Crown.

Get help if your Apple Watch won’t turn on or if you’re asked to enter a passcode and forgot it.

Side button

Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone

On your iPhone, tap Start Pairing, then tap it again on your Apple Watch. Wait for an animation to appear on your Apple Watch.

Hold your iPhone over the animation, then center the watch face in the viewfinder. Wait for a message to say that Your Apple Watch is Paired.

If you can’t use the camera, tap Pair Apple Watch Manually, then follow the steps that appear.

Pairing screen on Apple Watch

Set up and pick a wrist

On your iPhone, tap Set Up as New Apple Watch. If you’ve set up before, you can tap Restore from Backup. Then choose which wrist you want to wear your Apple Watch on. Read the Terms and Conditions and tap Agree, then tap Agree again to continue.

If you see an Activation Lock screen, your Apple Watch is linked to an Apple ID. You need to enter the email address and password for that Apple ID to continue set up. If your Apple Watch was previously owned, you might need to contact the previous owner to remove Activation Lock.


Set up route tracking and Siri

Choose whether you want your Apple Watch to track your workout routes and the weather, which uses Location Services. Then choose whether to use Siri. If Siri isn’t already set up on your iPhone, it will turn on after you choose this option.

Then your Apple Watch shows you which settings it shares with your iPhone. If you turned on Find my iPhone, Location Services, Wi-Fi Calling, and Diagnostics for your iPhone, these settings automatically turn on for your Apple Watch.


Sign in with your Apple ID

Enter your Apple ID password, then tap Next. You need to sign in with your Apple ID password to use features like Digital Touch, Apple Pay, and Handoff. If Find My iPhone isn’t set up on your iPhone, you’ll be asked to turn on Activation Lock.

If you forgot your Apple ID or password, you can find your Apple ID or reset your password.

Create a passcode

Choose whether to create a passcode for your Apple Watch. You need a passcode for features like Apple Pay.

Tap Create a Passcode or Add a Long Passcode on your iPhone. Switch to your Apple Watch to enter your new code, then tap Yes or No to choose if unlocking your iPhone will also unlock your Apple Watch.

You’ll also be asked to set up Apple Pay by adding a card.

Passcode screen

Set up the Activity app and SOS

You can set up the Activity app by entering some information about yourself and setting your goals. If you already set up Activity on another Apple Watch, you won’t get this step. If you skip this step, you can set up Activity later in the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.

You’ll be asked to set up SOS, which calls local emergency services when you press and hold the side button.

Activity screen

Sync your apps

Tap Install All to sync iPhone apps that work with your Apple Watch. Only apps that are compatible with your Apple Watch will sync. Tap Choose Later to sync only basic information like Mail, Contacts, and Messages.

Wait for your iPhone and Apple Watch to sync. Depending on the amount of data you’re syncing, this might take some time. Keep your devices close together until you hear a chime and feel a gentle tap from your Apple Watch.

Syncing screen

Get help

If you can’t set up your Apple Watch or you get an error message:

  1. Make sure that your iPhone has the latest version of iOS.
  2. Turn off your iPhone and turn it back on.
  3. Turn off your Apple Watch and turn it back on.

If your Apple Watch disconnects from your iPhone, you can connect them again.

If you need more help, contact Apple Support.