There are a lot of Apple Watch secret features you probably didn’t know about.
If you own an Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch Series 7, Apple Watch Series 8, Apple Watch Ultra, or the second-gen Apple Watch SE, you’re probably used to taking calls on it, monitor your health and exercise habits, as well as checking your notifications right on your wrist while your iPhone stays in your pocket.
But the truth is that your Apple Watch has a ton of hidden features that you are probably not aware of.
To make the most of owning an Apple Watch, you’ll need to know about a few secret features that will make interacting with the wearable easier.
Here are ten hidden Apple Watch features that’ll help your productivity at work and in your day-to-day life.
1. Mute notifications with ease
While the Apple Watch will give you the notifications you need to be aware of, it can also be annoying. Thankfully, it’s pretty easy to mute notifications. Simply cover the Watch with the palm of your hand for three seconds.
To enable this hidden Apple Watch feature, follow the steps below:
- open the Watch app on your iPhone.
- Look for the Sounds & Haptics menu.
- Toggle Cover to Mute to on.
2. Mute the Apple Watch completely
If you don’t want your wearable to make any sounds, use this nifty Apple Watch secret feature to mute it. There’s no physical button to mute the device like on the iPhone. Follow the steps below:
- Touch and hold the bottom of the watch face. Wait for Control Center to show, then swipe up.
- Tap the Silent Mode button. This turns on Silent Mode. You can still receive haptic notifications.
3. Hide notifications from others
If you don’t want others to be able to glance at your Apple Watch notifications and read the contents, you can enable a privacy feature from the iPhone’s Apple Watch app. Follow the steps below:
- Open the Watch app on your iPhone.
- Tap the Settings app.
- tap the Notifications menu.
- Enable Tap to Show Full Notification.
This secret Apple Watch feature ensures only you can read the contents of notifications. You’ll have to tap on a notification to see the text. Those around you will only see the notification’s app icon unless you tap it.
4. Cut the notification spam
Since all iPhone notifications will ping or vibrate on the Apple Watch, you’re potentially looking at an annoying experience. The good news is that you can use this Apple Watch secret feature to choose the apps that can send notifications to the wearable. Follow the steps below:
- Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.
- Tap My Watch, then tap Notifications.
- Select Mirror iPhone Alerts From list and enable only the apps you want to push notifications to the Apple Watch.
You can make sure that only critical notifications reach your Watch this way. All other notifications will be available on the iPhone.
5. Quickly launch the most recent Apple Watch app
The Apple Watch also runs watchOS apps. These are the counterparts of the apps you have installed on your iPhone. If you want to launch the most recent app quickly, simply double-tap on the Digital Crown to make it happen.
6. Turn off Bluetooth to speed up Apple Watch updates
The Apple Watch and iPhone pair via Bluetooth, and that’s how you update the wearable. To speed up the software update, you can disable Bluetooth on your iPhone, which should force the update over Wi-Fi. This should speed up the download, as Wi-Fi is much faster than Bluetooth.
7. Turn on the iPhone’s flashlight to find it
Have you ever misplaced your iPhone at home or think you’ve lost it? Chances are maybe it went under the couch, but how can you find out for sure? If you have an Apple Watch, then you can use it to ping your iPhone, instead of rushing over to your computer and iCloud.com.
I mean, you could use iCloud.com to ping your phone, but then your inbox will get hit with a flood of emails saying that a noise has been sent — annoying! Using your Apple Watch to find your iPhone is much easier.
Note: Your phone needs to be turned on and have Bluetooth enabled for this to work, and it will only ping the iPhone your Apple Watch is paired with; you can’t currently find other devices in this manner.
The Apple Watch’s Control Center has a Ping option to locate your missing iPhone. Tap it, and the iPhone will play a sound, which should help you retrieve it. Sometimes that submarine-style ping isn’t enough to help you track down your device. If you tap and hold the Find iPhone button on your Apple Watch, it’ll make your iPhone’s LED light flash as well as chime.
8. Reorder your Apple Watch faces
When you add a new watch face on Apple Watch, it is added to the end of your list. If you’d like to reorder watch faces to make them easier to swipe between on your Apple Watch, follow the steps below.
- Open the Watch app on iPhone
- Tap Edit to the right of My Faces
- Press, hold, and drag the 3 lines to the right of watch faces to reorder
- Tap Done when finished.
Now you can more quickly get to the watch faces you’d like by swiping from right to left on the edge of your Apple Watch.
You can also reorder the Apple Watch faces from the wearable’s screen. Tap and hold on one and then drag it around the display to place it in its proper place. Then swipe left or right on the screen to switch between Watch faces.
9. Tip calculator
If you’re dining out and need to calculate your tips quickly, just open the Apple Watch calculator app, enter the bill amount, tap on Tip, and have your watch figure out the amount. You can edit tip percentages, see both the tip amount and total amount in the calculator, and even add a number of people to split the check with.
10. Control your iPhone Camera using the Apple Watch
Speaking of featuring shortcuts for your iPhone, the Apple Watch can control your iPhone’s camera. You can take advantage of this Apple Watch hidden feature if you need to record yourself or want to take a group picture.
One of the apps on the Apple Watch is similar to the iPhone’s camera app. When you open it, it’ll turn on your phone’s camera. The app will has a three-second timer by default so you don’t appear tapping your watch in that selfie. Just prop your iPhone on a table or shelf, or a tripod if you want to get fancy, and you’re ready to control the camera remotely.
To find the camera app on your Apple Watch, simply look through your apps by pressing down on the digital crown, then choose the one with the camera icon. This will open the camera on your iPhone and show a preview of what the camera sees on your watch’s display.
You can pick from the front or back camera from your watch, as well as options like flash, live photo, and HDR. Holding down the shutter button will record a video.