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Your Apple Watch and your iPhone work hand in hand to keep you connected to the most important people and things in your life. However, if you have recently purchased an Apple Watch, you may be unsure how to connect it to your iPhone.

Or maybe you’ve upgraded your Apple Watch from Series 7 to Series 8 and you have forgotten how to connect your watch to your phone. Luckily, your watch and your phone work together to get you up and running. In just 7 easy steps, you can learn how to connect your Apple Watch to your iPhone. Let’s begin!

Getting Started

If your watch is running OS9, you will need to connect it to an iPhone 8 or a newer model with iOS 16. If you are upgrading to a new watch, make sure to disconnect your old watch from your phone first. This will create a backup of your old watch that you can use to set up the new one.

Likewise, if you are upgrading to a new iPhone, you will need to disconnect your current watch from your old phone. To disconnect your devices:

  1. Open the Watch app on your phone.
  2. Tap All Watches in the top left-hand corner of the screen.
  3. Tap the information icon next to the watch you want to disconnect.
  4. Tap Unpair Apple Watch.

Now you are ready to connect your Apple Watch to your iPhone.

Step 1: Put On Your Watch

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Your watch needs to be snug but not tight.

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Put your watch on the wrist that is most comfortable for you. Adjust the band so the watch fits close to the skin but is not too tight.

Step 2: Turn on Your Watch

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Press and hold the side button until you see the logo.

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Next, you need to turn on your watch. Press the side button and hold it until the Apple logo appears on your screen. You can find the side button on the right-hand side of your watch underneath the Digital Crown.

Step 3: Bring Your Watch and Your iPhone Close Together

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Make sure your watch is close to your phone.

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Third, you need to bring your watch and phone close together. Your devices must be in close proximity during the next steps of the process. Your watch will display a message to “Bring iPhone near Apple Watch.”

Step 4: Begin Pairing Your Watch and iPhone

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Tap here to start pairing your devices.

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With your watch and phone close together, wait until you see the pairing screen on your phone. Tap on Start Pairing at the bottom of the screen, then follow the instructions to continue. Alternatively, you can open the Watch app on your phone and tap Pair New Watch.

Step 5: Choose Set Up For Myself

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Tap on Set Up for Myself.

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Next, choose Set Up For Myself unless you are setting up the watch for a family member.

Step 6: Complete the Pairing

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Position the watch in your camera’s viewfinder.

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Next, hold your watch up to the camera and position it to align with the frame on your screen. Your iPhone screen will say, “Your Apple Watch is Paired” when the pairing is complete.

If the camera on your iPhone does not prompt you to pair your devices, you can click on Pair Apple Watch Manually at the bottom of the screen. Then follow the instructions on your screen to complete the process.

Step 7: Complete the Set Up

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Set up as new or use your backup, then wait for the sync to complete.

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Now, complete the set-up process. If this is a new watch, tap on Set Up as New Apple Watch. If you have upgraded from a previous watch, select Restore from Backup. Then, follow the instructions and wait for Apple Watch to finish syncing.

You will get an alert when the process is complete. If your watch is a cellular model, you will need to follow the instructions to activate your service during the setup process. While you wait for the sync to complete, tap Get to Know Your Watch at the bottom of the screen to learn how to use your new Apple Watch.

Check Your Connection

If you are not getting messages or notifications after the pairing process, your devices might not have connected. You can check your connection by going to Control Center on your watch. Swipe up from the bottom edge of your watch face to access Control Center.

When your devices are connected, you will see a green phone icon at the top of the screen. If the devices are not connected, you will see a red phone icon.

how to connect apple watch to iphone
The green phone icon indicates the devices are connected.

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To repair your connection, unpair the watch and phone according to the steps in the Getting Started section above. Then follow Steps 3-7 to pair your watch and iPhone again.

Connecting Your Current Apple Watch to a New iPhone

If you have a new iPhone, it is easy to connect it to your current watch. You can simply choose to use your current watch when you set up your new phone.

When the iPhone setup process has finished, your watch will ask you to pair it with your new phone. Tap OK and enter your passcode to begin pairing the devices.

Connecting More than One Apple Watch to Your iPhone

If you need to connect more than one Apple Watch to your iPhone, you can do it the same way you connected the first watch. Make sure your watch and your phone are in close proximity, then wait until you see the pairing screen on your phone. Tap Pair to begin pairing another watch.

You can also use the Watch app on your phone to connect additional watches. Open the app and tap All Watches in the top left-hand corner of the screen. Tap Add Watch and follow the instructions to complete the process.

how to connect apple watch to iphone
Tap Add Watch to connect additional watches to your iPhone.

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If You Can’t Connect Your Apple Watch to Your iPhone

If all you see is the watch face when you try to pair your watch to a new iPhone, your watch may still be paired to your old phone. You will need to unpair your watch from any other phone before pairing it with a new one.

Alternatively, you can reset your watch to its factory settings. This will erase all content and settings, unpairing it from any connected iPhone.

Hopefully, this guide has helped you learn how to connect your Apple Watch to your iPhone. When you see that green iPhone icon on your watch, you know your devices are connected. Now you’re ready to start connecting with friends and loved ones on your Apple Watch.

How to Connect Apple Watch to iPhone in 7 Steps (With Photos) FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

My watch and phone won't pair automatically. What can I do?

You can pair your devices manually. Tap on Pair Apple Watch Manually at the bottom of the screen with the viewfinder frame.

Can I connect more than one Apple Watch to my iPhone?

Yes, you can use the Watch app on your phone to connect additional watches. Go to All Watches, then tap Add Watch to add another watch.

Why won't my watch connect to my new iPhone?

Your watch may still be paired with your previous phone. You must unpair the watch from your old phone before pairing it with a new device.

My watch is paired to my iPhone, but I am not getting messages. What can I do?

Open Control Center on your watch to see if your devices are connected. If you see a red iPhone icon at the top of the display, unpair your devices, then pair them again to reconnect.

Can I use the information from my old watch to set up my new one?

Yes, unpairing the old watch from your iPhone creates a backup. When you pair a new watch, you will be given the option to restore from a backup.

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