How to Update Apple Watch’s Operating System

When your Apple Watch stops displaying sweet nothings about your potential and starts talking business, it’s time for a software update. Here’s how…

My new Apple Watch has been reminding me every morning that an updated operating system is available, and I can install it overnight if it’s connected to Wi-Fi.
(That’s a nice way to say that I really should be taking some responsibility as a human and keep my technology up to date!)

And of course, I forget about it the next day, and the cycle has been repeating itself.
(It would help if my Apple Watch reminded me right before I went to sleep.)

But wait a minute… my Apple Watch is connected to Wi-Fi overnight….
Why doesn’t it just update itself?

Is there something more you need to do?

Find the watchOS Update
Well, of course.
It’s just like any Apple operating system update. You’ve got to actively opt in…

For the GPS model:

  • Open Apple Watch app on your iPhone
  • In “My Watch…”
  • Tap “General”
  • Tap “Software Update”
  • Tap “Install”
  • Enter your password

And then, your iPhone begins the software download process.
…followed by the update to your Apple Watch.

Get it Done Overnight
So, much of the heavy lifting actually takes place on your iPhone.

Do you really need to do the update overnight?
(Is it that slow?)

Not necessarily, but any Apple operating system update takes some time… so, I think it’s a great practice to do it overnight when you’re not waiting for it to finish up.

Those Compliments are Nice
Happily, my Apple Watch is now updated and free to display its morning affirmations again.

I must admit, those little encouraging messages from my Apple Watch do help to perk me up as I’m working through my cup of Joe in the morning.

And yes, by the way… that’s an Apple Watch Series 4 plastic bumper I’m sporting in the photo above. I’m not proud of these training wheels, but this little third-party ‘Frankensteinian’ cover has helped me to stop worrying that I’m going to whack my wrist and scar my beautiful Apple Watch.
(It’s made by Alritz and costs $9.90 on Amazon Prime.)

So, now my Apple Watch is both up to date and protected.