The watch faces on the Apple Watch are somewhat of an art form in themselves; beautifully crafted watch faces were created in collaboration with some of the best time-keeping experts in the world.
But now, you can have those wonderful faces as a functional Apple Watch screen saver on your Mac too!
Beautiful screen savers
Created by digital designer Ramus Nielson, the Apple Watch screensaver for Mac is a free download from the developer’s website. It works with various version of OS X and macOS, including Yosemite, El Capitan, and Sierra.
The Apple Watch screensaver is programmed to show the correct time, and with that in mind, you can accurately read the time from your screensaver when it appears due to inactivity.
It’s also worth noting that the developer took careful time to reproduce these high-resolution mock-ups of Apple’s various watch faces available on the Apple Watch, and they look very much like clones. They even look great on retina displays!
What’s more is you have several watch faces to choose from, just like on the actual Apple Watch you might be wearing on your wrist at the same time as using your Mac.
These include the Simple, Chronograph, Normal, Utility, and X Large watch faces.
How to get these Apple Watch screen savers on your Mac
Downloading and installing the Apple Watch screen savers on your Mac is easy – just head over to the developer’s website and follow these steps:
Step 1: Scroll down and hit the big colored download button.
Step 2: Save the .zip file when prompted.
Step 3: Head to the containing folder where you downloaded the file to, and double-click on the .zip file.
Step 4: Now double-click on the .saver screensaver file that is produced by the un-zipping process. If macOS won’t let you open the file, simply right-click on it (or use Control + Click), and choose Open from the menu.
Step 5: The System Preferences app will launch and ask you to install the screensaver – choose between installing it for only yourself, or for all users.
Step 6: Click on the blue “Install” button, and the screensaver will be added to your screensaver library under System Preferences > Desktop & Screensaver > Screen Saver.
Configuring the Apple Watch screensaver for Mac
Once you’ve installed the screen saver, you can then go in and start editing its appearance. This includes changing the watch face to be anything you’d like (ie. Simple, Chronograph, Normal, Utility, or X Large), and then configuring the colors to be what you’d like. The website notes that with all of the watch face and color combinations, there are 80 different variations of effects you can choose from.
Once you’re in System Preferences > Desktop & Screensaver > Screen Saver on your Mac, you can scroll down in the list of screensavers you have available and you’ll see the Apple Watch screen saver you just installed. You can click on it once to bring up its options.
By clicking on the “Screen Saver Options…” button, you’ll open a prompt with combo boxes that let you choose the clock style you want to use and the colors you want to use.
After you’ve chosen an Apple Watch face you want to use, you can select a color. You have all of the following colors to pick from:
- Light orange
- Light blue
- Midnight blue
- Vintage rose
- Antique white
Just like on the Apple Watch, these colors are used to add a touch of color to the watch face interface, this typically means the second hand, any complications, or digital text, depending on which apply to the different kinds of watch faces being offered.
My Mac isn’t letting me install the screensaver
Depending on how macOS is configured on your machine, Gatekeeper may prevent you from installing things on your machine that aren’t from verified developers, such as this screensaver. It’s a security feature that tries to keep you tied to the Mac App Store, or to downloads from verified websites.
Since this is a third-party developer and a third-party website, it’s possible your machine could throw a fit and refuse to install the screensaver, but as Apple notes in a support document, this is easy to fix, as we’ll detail quickly for you below:
Step 1: Launch the System Preferences app on your Mac and navigate to the “Security & Privacy” window.
Step 2: Click on the lock button at the bottom left of the window to unlock the “Allow apps downloaded from:” settings.
Step 3: Enter your Mac password when prompted, then press the return key on your keyboard.
Step 4: From the “Allow apps downloaded from:” list, choose “Anywhere” and try to open the screensaver file again (it should work this time).
My thoughts on the Apple Watch screen saver for macOS
It goes without saying that after finding out about this screen saver, it has become my new favorite. Not only is it well designed, and beautifully crafted just like the traditional watch faces I use on my own Apple Watch, but the fact that you can configure it to have the style you want, and pick from your own watch faces gives it a true Apple-esque look and feel.
It is worth mentioning that the Apple Watch screensaver for Mac doesn’t come with as many watch faces as the Apple Watch does, but by no means does that make or break the screensaver for me. Most of the plain-Jane watch faces are there, including the one that I use regularly on my Apple Watch, so I’m fully content with having matching watch faces on my Apple Watch and Mac.
Will you like it? – honestly it depends on your own tastes. If you enjoy high-quality, high-resolution detail that feels like Apple designed it, then you might enjoy this Apple Watch screensaver. On the other hand, if you like more exiting screensavers than just a clock, chances are you’ll want to look elsewhere, as all this one does is show the time.
If you asked my advice, I’d say go and grab it. The screensaver is a completely free download and from what it looks like, the developer is regularly updating the screensaver with more watch faces, features, and improvements. Having been downloaded well over 160,000 times, this one looks like a hit, and we’re sure the popularity is going to continue to grow.
Do you like the idea of an Apple Watch screensaver on your Mac? Share in the comments!