The Apple Watch troubleshooting guide

Just got your hands on an Apple Watch? Congratulations, you’re in the vanguard of digital transformation as computing becomes wearable and those apps define new space in the world.

Just got your hands on an Apple Watch? Congratulations, you’re in the vanguard of digital transformation as computing becomes wearable and those apps define new space in the world. However, if you’ve hit a problem with your new wearable, here’s what to do....

Don’t panic

There’s no need to panic. Most everything you need to know about how to use your Apple Watch is available here, here or as an iBook you can download right here.

Restart, Force Restart, Reset

Just like an iPad or iPhone, Apple has kept things simple when it comes to what to do if things go wrong. So, if something doesn’t appear to be working correctly please Restart your Apple Watch and the connected iPhone.


To restart Apple Watch, press and hold the side button until the sliders appear, then drag the Power Off slider to the right. You should then hold down the side button until the Apple logo appears and the smartwatch starts again.

Also read: 11 must-have Apple Watch apps

You should also restart your iPhone -- press and hold the Sleep/Wake button until the slider appears, then drag the slider to the right. (You turn it on again by holding the Sleep/Wake button down until the Apple logo appears.)

Force Restart

If your Apple Watch will not restart or the problem is not solved when you’ve tried restarting it a few times, then try the Force Restart procedure. To Force Restart your Apple Watch, hold down the side button and the Digital Crown at the same time for at least ten seconds, until the Apple logo appears.


To Reset your Apple Watch open the Settings app on the Home screen, and navigate to General>Reset, and choose ‘Erase All Content and Settings.' The Watch will restart and you will need to pair it with your iPhone all over again by opening the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and following the instructions there.

Forgotten passcode

Your smartwatch will be disabled if you forget your passcode or enter an incorrect one, and if Erase Data is active (and it should be) all the data on your Watch will be erased after 10 failed attempts.

To use the device again if you forget your password, you should launch the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and enter the passcode again there.

If you still don’t remember your password, you can restore the smartwatch and reset the password, though this erases all content and settings on the device, before replacing it from your iPhone backup (if available).

Back up and restore

Apple Watch content is backed up continuously to your paired iPhone. If you get a new Watch or repair the one you have, you can Restore from Backup and select one of the backups stored on your iPhone.

Don’t get it wet

Apple claims the Watch can withstand being under 1 metre of water for 30-minutes, but a group of intrepid Australians (above video) are seeing much better success than this – however, we still think you should probably avoid getting your Apple Watch wet, not least because you’ll need to wait until June to replace it.

Passing it on

Unless you happen to be a big time eBay trader or grey importer I don’t suppose you’ll be planning to sell it  just yet. But if you do decide to sell it in the future, remember to unpair the device from your phone and erase the contents.

One more thing

Install and delete apps on your Apple Watch as much as you want – deleting an app on the smartwatch will not affect the one on your iPhone. Delete apps by pressing on their icon on the Home screen until they begin to vibrate – you should tap the ‘X’ that appears on the icon of those apps you wish to delete.

For more help visit the official Apple Watch support pages.

Google+? If you use social media and happen to be a Google+ user, why not join AppleHolic's Kool Aid Corner community and join the conversation as we pursue the spirit of the New Model Apple?

Got a story? Drop me a line via Twitter or in comments below and let me know. I'd like it if you chose to follow me on Twitter so I can let you know when fresh items are published here first on Computerworld.

Copyright © 2015 IDG Communications, Inc.

7 inconvenient truths about the hybrid work trend
Shop Tech Products at Amazon