How to pair your Apple Watch with your new iPhone
However, there are some aspects of the process that initially might seem confusing, because the Apple Watch’s data is not backed up directly on iCloud. Its backup passes through your iPhone, in other words, before you can pair your Apple Watch to your new iPhone, you need to do a couple of preparatory steps to ensure your Apple Watch data will be safe.
Here is the information you need when pairing your Apple Watch to a new iPhone.
Jump to section:
- Prepare for connecting your Apple Watch to your new phone
- Set up your new iPhone
- Apple Watch manual setup with the new iPhone
- How to unpair your Apple Watch from your old iPhone (only in some cases)
- How to pair your Apple Watch to your new iPhone, without your old iPhone (if you erased it, or if you don’t have it)
Prepare for the switch of your Apple Watch to your new iPhone
First off, you need to make sure your Apple Watch and your old iPhone have enough battery because sometimes the backup and pairing can take some time. Additionally, make sure that they are updated to the newest available iOS and watchOS version.
Then, after both are to the most recent available version, check if syncing is turned on for iCloud. The Apple Watch’s data is not directly backed up on iCloud, the backing up is done via your iPhone. To check if the backup is activated on your iPhone, go to Settings > tap on your name > iCloud and check if the toggle for Health is on. Health will have your Apple Watch data, so it’s important to be on if you want to keep your Apple Watch data once you switch to your new iPhone.
Also, ensure that your iPhone is connected to Wi-Fi and has Bluetooth enabled.
Keep this in mind: the Apple Watch backup to the iPhone is done automatically over a period of time. If you have recent changes or Activity that’s been recorded to your Apple Watch and you’re unsure whether or not this has been backed up in the Health app, you can check on your iPhone’s Health app. If the newest data isn’t there, you have two options: wait for the automatic backup, although it’s not clear how often it is made, or unpair your Apple Watch from the old iPhone, which will create a final backup of it, but then it will reset all your Apple Watch settings.
After you’re done with the backup, it’s time to look to your new iPhone.
Set up your new iPhoneYou have to first set up your new device before you can pair the Apple Watch to it. In this step, when prompted whether you have an iCloud or iTunes backup, choose your most recent backup to restore your data from your old device to your new device.
Then, your iPhone will ask you if you want to use your Apple Watch, so tap “Continue”. If it doesn’t ask you, you can still set up your Apple Watch manually.
Apple Watch manual setup
- Keep your Apple Watch and iPhone close together
- Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone
- If your iPhone asks you to confirm that you want to use your Watch, follow the steps to finish the setup
- If your iPhone asks you to Start Pairing, first unpair your Apple Watch from your old iPhone
How to unpair your Apple Watch from your old iPhone (do this only if you need to)
You will have to manually unpair your Apple Watch from your old iPhone only if your new iPhone didn’t ask you (when you were setting it up) to use your Apple Watch, or if you have some recent activity data that you haven’t seen in your Health data on your old iPhone and you don’t want to wait for the automatic sync to occur.
See what is included in Apple Watch backup on Apple Support
Here’s how to unpair your Apple Watch:
- Open the Watch app on your handset.
- Tap on the My Watch tab on the lower left side of the display.
- Tap All Watches and the info button next to the watch you want to unpair.
- Tap on Unpair Apple Watch.
- If you don’t have your old iPhone or you have erased it, there are some different steps that you can do.
How to pair your Apple Watch to your new iPhone, without your old iPhone
If you don’t have your old iPhone, or you have erased it, it’s still possible your Apple Watch is paired with it. To solve this issue, follow the steps:
- Erase your Apple Watch
- Set up your new iPhone and sign in to iCloud (If you’ve already done that, skip this step)
- Open the Apple Watch app on your new iPhone, then pair your watch
- Try to restore it from a backup. You have to have both your new iPhone and the Apple Watch updated to respectively the latest iOS and watchOS version available.
- When you’re asked to restore from a backup, select the most recent backup
- If you don’t have a backup, you need to set up your Apple Watch as new
If your Apple Watch is stuck while pairing or you encounter other issue, visit Apple’s troubleshooting page.