How to unlock your iPhone using an Apple Watch and vice versa
Apple has a pretty tight knit ecosystem that is very well built and interconnected. This means that even though most Apple devices have their own separate operating system, these interfaces can communicate with each other quite easily. These free-flowing conversations between different Apple interfaces also give different devices some control over each other, allowing one device to execute a specific command on another device.
In a simpler way, thanks to the ecosystem Apple has built around its devices, you will be able to perform a specific function on one device using another. One such feature is the ability to unlock your iPhone using your Apple Watch or Apple Watch with iPhone. All you have to do is follow these simple steps, and unlocking your devices doesn’t always require you to reach for them:
Unlock iPhone with Apple Watch with FaceID
Apple added this functionality to the iPhone and Apple Watch during peak pandemic times when wearing a mask was mandatory and not an obligation. This feature only works with iPhones that come with FaceID, which means that only the iPhone X and newer (not including the iPhone SE) come with this feature. Second, your iPhone must be running iOS 14.5 or later, and your Apple Watch must be running watchOS 7.4 or later for you to access this feature.
While turning on this feature only involves three easy steps, there are a few things you need to know before you get to the unlocking part.
The feature requires you to have an active Face ID on your iPhone, and it is only when the iPhone fails to identify your face to unlock the iPhone for some reason (it could be a mask or some obtrusion) that you can use the Apple Watch for to unlock iPhone.
Second, you must have a passcode set on your Apple Watch as well. To use the feature, make sure the watch is unlocked on your hand and wrist detection is also enabled. You must keep your iPhone and Apple Watch within 33 feet for the feature to work, and you must keep Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled on both of your devices. All of this may seem like a lot of work for very little, but if you use Mask a lot and don’t have the patience to type in your password every time, this can be a very handy option.
Step 1: Go to Face ID and Passcode
On your iPhone, you must first go to the Settings app to enable this feature. When you open the app, scroll down and look for the FaceID and Passcode options. Your iPhone will ask you to enter your passcode to enter. Enter it and you’ll be in the Face ID and Passcode zone.
Step 2: Give your Apple Watch the key to your iPhone
When you get to Face ID and Passcode, scroll down and look for the Unlock with Apple Watch section. Here you will find the name of the paired Apple Watch and a switch next to it. All you have to do is press the switch and you’ll be able to unlock your iPhone with your Apple Watch.
Step 3: Tap the lock on Apple Watch
After you enable the feature, you will only be able to unlock your iPhone with Apple Watch when your iPhone fails to do so several times. When that happens, your watch will vibrate briefly and a small lock will appear on the screen. All you have to do is tap it and your iPhone will unlock.
Unlock Apple Watch with iPhone
Now that we’re done with how to unlock iPhone using an Apple Watch, it’s time to get into the reverse zone. This means, along with the ability to unlock your iPhone with your Apple Watch; you also have the option to unlock your Apple Watch using your iPhone. This will save you the trouble of typing the password on the small screen to unlock it. And doing it is pretty easy too. Just follow these simple steps and you’ll have an unlock-free Apple Watch on your wrist:
Step 1: Bluetooth and Wi-Fi? You are on!
Just like in part one of this article, enabling this feature requires you to also turn on both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. And to get this done you can just go to Settings or come to Control center and turn on Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Also, make sure your Apple Watch is connected to your iPhone.
Step 2: Go to the Watch app
Watch is a native app, meaning it comes pre-installed on your iPhone. All you have to do is scroll through the list of apps and find the Watch app.
Step 3: Give iPhone the unlocking power
Once you’ve found the Watch app on your iPhone, scroll down to Passcode and open it. Go to the feature called Unlock with iPhone. Tap the switch to turn it green and you’ll be able to unlock your Apple Watch with your iPhone.
Step 4: Tap the lock icon to cancel
After turning on the function, as long as the iPhone is close to the Apple Watch (about 33 feet), when you unlock the iPhone and if the Apple Watch on the wrist is locked, you will get a banner notification on your iPhone card with a lock button. You can press the button to cancel the unlock, but if you want to unlock the Apple Watch, you can just leave it and after a short moment, the Apple Watch will unlock and a banner will appear on the iPhone that it is unlocked.
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