Use the Always On feature with your Apple Watch

Apple Watch Series 5 and later can display the time and other glanceable information, even when your wrist is down.

Always On is turned on by default on Apple Watch Series 5 and later, including Apple Watch Ultra.* In this mode, the time will always be visible, along with the watch face or your most recent active app.

To improve battery life, the display will be dimmed when your wrist is down or if you quickly cover the display with your hand. A wrist raise or tap on the screen will bring everything back to full brightness and make the watch screen active so that you can interact with your watch.

* Apple Watch SE doesn't support Always On.

Manage Always On settings

Always On has settings that let you turn the feature off, which can improve battery life. You can also choose the information that you want to appear on the screen when your wrist is down.

How to turn the Always On feature on or off

  1. Open the Settings app on your Apple Watch. To do this, press the Digital Crown to see the Home Screen, then tap the Settings button .
  2. Tap Display & Brightness.
  3. Scroll down, then tap Always On.
  4. Tap Always On to turn on or turn off the feature.

When your Apple Watch is in Low Power Mode, Always On isn't available.

How to manage the information that appears when your wrist is down

  1. Open the Settings app on your Apple Watch.
  2. Tap Display & Brightness.
  3. Scroll down, then tap Always On.
  4. Tap Show Complication Data, Show Notifications or Show Apps. The apps that can show that type of information will appear on the next screen.
  5. Turn off the apps that you don't want to show information on the screen when your wrist is down. You can turn off the category of information entirely by tapping the button at the top of the screen.

How app complications appear when your wrist is down

When your wrist is down, the time and any complications on the watch face will be updated once every minute, and information will appear as follows:

  • Time complications, such as Stopwatch and Timer, round up their displayed information to the next minute.
  • Complications that show live data, such as Compass and Noise, are not active.
  • Other complications, such as Calendar, Weather and third-party apps, will be refreshed once per minute or as needed.

How to interact with your watch

When your display is dimmed, it ignores most swipes to prevent accidental input. Even with your wrist down, you can still tap a complication to open its app, swipe down from the top of the screen to see notifications or swipe up from the bottom to use Control Centre.

You can also raise your wrist, press the Digital Crown or press the side button to bring your watch to full brightness.

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