How to Set up an Apple Watch

The Apple Watch revolutionised the smart-watch market, in fact, some may argue that Apple Watches kick-started the smart-watch market. What Apple managed to do was bring a smart-watch to market that integrated seamlessly with the whole Apple eco-system, a play they do so well, over and over again.  There are so many functions that are unique to the Apple Watch; the selection of apps that you can download, both for standalone use on the Apple Watch and apps with limited functionality that integrate with an app on your iPhone, are absolutely incredible. You can play games on your Apple Watch, take phone calls, send texts, manage your mental health, monitor your heart rate and track your workouts and daily steps all from a device that sits neatly on your wrist. It’s a little surprise that we’re big fans of the Apple Watch here at Gadget GoGo HQ.

If you’ve purchased a new one, or maybe you’ve bought one of our certified refurbished Apple Watches, you’re probably wondering what to do now. Despite being an incredibly user-friendly device, Apple Watches can feel a little complicated to set up if you’ve not used an Apple Watch before. We’ve created a handy article that will help guide you through the entire setup process.

Firstly, Some Important Things To Know About Apple Watches

Apple Watches Do Not Work With Android Phones – The first thing to note is that Apple Watches don’t work with Android phones. We wrote a whole blog post on the reason for compatibility issues which you can read here – Are Apple Watches Compatible With Android Phones?  You can, however, borrow a friend’s phone to set up your watch if you want to use it as a standalone device but be aware that it won’t back up anymore so if you lose the watch or have to reset it you will lose all of your data.

Recently Apple has however recently released an option within the app that allows an iPhone user to set up a watch for someone else which means they can set it up without having constant access to your data and it allows them to have their own watch, which means you can have an Apple Watch and an Android phone if you want to and don’t mind missing some of the functionality.

What To Do When You First Received Your Apple Watch

If you’ve bought a refurbished Apple Watch from us, your new purchase will arrive in a discreet box with padding to protect your watch in transit. Regardless of where or how you buy your Apple Watch, you may be surprised to find out that it arrives in a few different pieces like in the below image.

So the first thing you’ll want to do is build it so it resembles an actual watch. To do this is simple.

  1. Make sure you have the watch face and the two halves of the strap
  2. When you look at the strap you will notice that there are what looks like magnets on each end of the strap, as well as prongs on the watch face
  3. Slide the watch strap with the metal strips into the opening of the watch face from the side

Once you’ve attached the strap you can go ahead and put your watch on charge.

Take the white disc part of your charger and put it against the back of your watch face (it’s magnetic so will hold easily), then turn it on by pressing and holding the crown (the disc on the side of the watch face) for a few seconds until the Apple logo appears.

Setting Up an Apple Watch

Pairing a Series 1 Apple Watch or Pairing a Series 2 Apple Watch

Once you’ve turned your watch on, the instructions vary slightly depending on what generation of watch you have. If you have an older watch (generations one or two for example) then you will need to head to the app store on your iPhone to download the “Watch” app – the app is available to download for free.

Once this has been installed, open the app and you will see an option that says “pair new watch”. When you touch this button you will be prompted to turn Bluetooth on on your phone, which can be done by following the instructions on the screen to go to your settings app. When you see the name of your watch appear on your screen, click it and then a viewfinder will appear on your phone screen and a swirling pattern will appear on your Apple Watch. Move the watch screen into the on screen viewfinder and the two devices should automatically pair together.

How To Pair An Apple Watch – Series 3 or Newer

If you have a newer Apple Watch (series 3 onwards) the pairing process is a lot simpler, but you will still need the Watch app to complete the set up. Once your watch has switched on simply bring your Apple Watch near your iPhone and wait for the pairing screen to appear and tap continue. This will then prompt you to download the “Watch” app if you don’t already have it. Open the app and tap “pair new watch” which will bring up the viewfinder screen on your phone and pattern on your watch. Scan the pattern by lining it up with the viewfinder on your home screen and it will automatically pair.

Once the watch has paired, tap “set up for myself” unless you are an Android user and borrowing someone’s phone to set up your watch, in which case you would tap “set up for someone else” and follow the instructions to set up your watch. You will need to input your time zone and location before you use your watch. If you have opted for a cellular Apple Watch you can set this up at the same time as your watch or you can choose to do this at a later date.

You may also need to update the software on your Apple Watch – if you do your phone will automatically do this before you finish the set up. While the watch is being set up the face will display tips of how to interact with your watch.

You’re Up And Running

Once you have completed these steps you will be able to tweak settings from either your phone or your watch. You can browse the app store from your phone’s watch app and download any apps from your phone directly to your watch. Your phone will also look at the apps on your iPhone and suggest the corresponding watch app if one is available.

Now that your watch has completed the initial set up you will be free to adjust the settings and customise it from either your phone or the watch itself. Choose interface colours, select a clock face style, choose a home screen from pre-existing options or create your own with a photo. The possibilities are endless with an Apple Watch so take your time and enjoy learning how to use it.