How to use a World Clock complication without city abbreviation on Apple Watch

This tutorial shows you how to use the World Clock complication on your Apple Watch face without it showing the city abbreviation. Why you may want to do that will become clear in a while!

Apple Watch face showing World Clock complication with and without city abbreviation

I like having a simple watch face on my Apple Watch (like Color or Simple), mostly thanks to the elegant simplicity it can offer when customized to the extent of its minimalism. The one downside of this approach, though, is that it’s sometimes hard to actually read the time. Is it 4.30 or 5.30? I often can’t tell the difference, despite having learned to read the time on an analog watch.

One simple solution I came across was to add a World Clock complication and bring digital time to the watch face. It takes away from the minimalism of the face, but it does serve its main purpose, which of course, is telling the time and making it so I can actually read it.

World Clock no city abbreviation

The problem with World Clock complications is that they all come with city abbreviations. For example, the city abbreviation for San Diego is SD; for New Delhi, it’s ND; for Tokyo, it’s TOK, and so on. There was no way I was going to let those three letters add more distraction than need be.

How to remove the city abbreviation from the World Clock complication

Apple actually lets you customize the city abbreviation from within the Apple Watch app on your iPhone. Knowing that, I quickly tried to replace my city abbreviation with a simple space, and it did the trick. Of course, you can replace the city abbreviation with anything you see fit, such as the Apple logo , for example, but for the sake of simplicity, I just went with an empty space. Here’s how you can do it on your watch:

  1. Open the Watch app on your paired iPhone.
  2. Scroll down the My Watch tab and tap Clock.
  3. Tap City Abbreviations from the bottom.
  4. Select the city for which you want to edit the abbreviation.
  5. Delete the abbreviation and hit the space key on your keyboard to insert a space.
  6. Finally, tap the return key on the keyboard.
Use space as city name in City Abbreviations settings of Watch app

You can now hit the Back button or exit the Watch app.

The change will transfer instantly to your Apple Watch, and if you currently have that complication on your watch face, you should see it sans city abbreviation immediately. As mentioned above, you can customize that to your liking, but when it comes to faces, I always feel like less is more.

As Dan Frommer notes, this is a mod that might look funny on some watch faces, but it’s not terrible, either. As you can see from the above screenshots, it actually looks nice on the Simple watch face.

Check out next: How to use your own photo as your Apple Watch face