You’ve recently purchased an Apple Watch and are having a lot of fun experimenting with its various features. At the moment, you’re more than satisfied with the device, but you’d like to customize the experience by installing apps that are different from the default ones.
That’s a great idea! In fact, many apps can make the Apple smartwatch experience particularly satisfying. What are you waiting for to install them? Excuse me? You have no idea how to download them? I see, so let’s do this: I’ll explain how to download apps to Apple Watch with a quick tutorial dedicated to the topic.
In the following lines, in fact, I’m going to show you, in a simple and detailed way, how to download apps to apple watch: an operation that, I anticipate now, is much easier than you might think. So, sit back, relax, put your Apple Watch on your wrist and start to focus on reading what follows. I sincerely hope that, in the end, you can feel happy and satisfied with the results.
Before we get into the heart of the guide, going to explain how to download apps to Apple Watch, there are some preliminary steps that you need to take to make sure that everything goes smoothly.
First of all, keep in mind that apps can be downloaded either through the App Store on iOS, thus acting from the iPhone, or directly from the App Store on watchOS, thus proceeding directly from the Apple Watch. In the first case, of course, the apps are downloaded and installed on the iPhone as well.
Having said that, to download and install apps on the Apple Watch, it must be connected to the Internet and connected to the iPhone via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. You can check the status of the connection by acting both from the control center and from the settings of the devices in question
To download apps on Apple Watch is then essential to have an Apple ID and have accessed the App Store with it. If you don’t have one yet, you can read my guide on how to create an Apple ID, while if you don’t remember the credentials you can try to fix it by consulting my post on how to recover Apple ID.
Another thing I invite you to make sure of is that on iOS you have the Watch app, which is essential to perform the pairing and to manage the operation of the Apple smartwatch from the iPhone. This is a free “standard” app, but if removed it can be downloaded again from the relevant section of the App Store
How you can download apps on Apple Watch
At this point, I’d say we’re there: we can finally get down to business and go find out how you can download apps on Apple Watch acting both from iPhone and directly from Apple Watch.
The directions to follow are always the same regardless of the model of the Apple Watch (or iPhone) used. So, whether you want to know how to download apps on Apple Watch 3, how to download apps on Apple Watch 5, or how to download apps on any other model of Apple’s wearable device, the instructions you need to put into practice are the ones below.
If you’re interested in understanding how to install apps on Apple Watch from iPhone, the first steps you have to take are to put the Apple Watch on your wrist and unlock it (if necessary); after that, you have to take the iPhone and unlock it, you have to access the home screen and/or the iOS App Library and you have to launch the App Store by selecting the relevant icon (the one with the “A” on a blue background).
In the screen that is now shown, go to the App section, touching the item at the bottom of the screen, and select the App category for Apple Watch located in the Top Categories section, visible by scrolling down. Then take a look at the various applications available, organized by type and utility.
Alternatively, you can search directly for a specific app by going to the Search section of the App Store, tapping on the appropriate item located at the bottom right, and typing the keywords of your interest in the text field displayed.
When you find an app that you think may be of interest, select its name, to access its description (in which you will also find indicated the actual compatibility with Apple Watch), then if you actually intend to proceed with the download and installation, tap on the Get button (in the case of free apps) or one with the price (in the case of paid apps), then the Install button and authorize the download using Face ID, Touch ID or Apple ID password.
After completing the above steps, the chosen app will first be installed on the iPhone and then also on the Apple Watch. Once the installation process is complete, you can start using the app by accessing the list of apps installed on the Apple Watch, pressing on the Digital Crown on the case when the smartwatch display is visible on the dial, and selecting the relevant icon with your finger.
From Apple Watch
If you prefer, you can also download apps to the Apple Watch directly from the Apple smartwatch. How do you do that? I’ll explain it immediately. First, put the Apple Watch on your wrist and unlock it (if necessary). Once you see the dial-in use, press on the Digital Crown on the body, to access the watchOS menu and launch the App Store by selecting the icon (the one with the “A” and the blue background).
At this point, select the categories of applications that interest you and give a look at the various apps available. Alternatively, you can do a direct search, typing in the appropriate text field located at the top of the keywords of your interest.
When you find an app that you think might interest you, select its name to access its description. If you want to proceed with the download and installation, tap on the Get button (in the case of free apps) or the button with the price (in the case of paid apps) and authorize the execution of the operation by pressing it twice consecutively on the side button of the smartwatch.
Then, you can access the newly installed app by calling up the watchOS screen with the list of apps on the device, pressing on the Digital Crown when the display is visible on the dial, and selecting the icon with your finger.
I can’t download apps to my Apple Watch: how to fix it
If you’re asking yourself “I can’t download apps on Apple Watch, why?”, and you’re having trouble, even though you’ve followed my instructions to the letter, I suggest that you first check that you’ve done all the preliminary steps described in the step at the beginning of the tutorial and if not, repeat the steps.
If this does not solve the problem, I recommend you to restart the Apple Watch, following the instructions in my guide on how to turn off Apple Watch. If that doesn’t work, you can try to cope with the difficulties you’re having by going to reset the device, as I explained in my tutorial on how to initialize Apple Watch.
Considering that even the use of an outdated version of iOS and/or watchOS can be an impediment to the proper downloading of apps on the Apple Watch, I invite you to verify that both on the smartwatch and the “apple phone” is installed the latest update supported by the device, proceeding as I explained in my specific guides on how to update iPhone and how to update Apple Watch.
If your problem is that the apps downloaded from the App Store on iOS are not installed on Apple Watch, it is probably because the function for automatic installation is disabled. To fix this, open the Watch app on your iPhone, go to the Apple Watch section of the app, tap on the General tab, and turn the switch next to the Auto-install apps option to ON.
Alternatively, or if you continue to have problems despite the activation of automatic downloads, you can proceed manually from time to time. To do so, reach the section Available Apps that you find by scrolling down in the Apple Watch section of the Watch app and press the Install button next to the name of the application of your interest.
In the desperate case that none of the “tips” that I have provided should allow you to solve the problems you are experiencing with the Apple Watch, you can try to take a look at this section of the Apple website dedicated to supporting the Apple Watch.
If, however, you believe it is necessary to get in touch directly with the support of Apple, I inform you that you can do so in several ways: by phone, via chat, online support, or going in person at the Apple Store.