Apple Watch Series 5 builds upon the major redesign and all the great features of its predecessor with such improvements as an always-on display, new sensors and a few other perks. To help you get the most out of your brand-new watch, we’ve put together a quick video tutorial highlighting some of the best tips, tricks and lesser-known features of Series 5.
Apple Watch Series 5: 10 tips and tricks
Make sure to watch the video below by our own Harris Craycraft. It runs just five minutes long and takes you through ten Apple Watch Series 5 features you may be unfamiliar with.
Don’t have time to watch the whole clip? Save it for later and continue reading about the tips.
1. Measure surface angles
Series 5 has a compass sensor. Just like on iPhone, the Compass app takes advantage of it for a handy level feature. Just scroll down in the app to get to this tool, then lay down your watch on any surface to measure both its horizontal and vertical level.
2. Enhanced directions in Maps
Like on iPhone, Apple Maps uses the built-in compass sensor to indicate the direction you’re currently facing, which comes in handy when using step-by-step directions.
3. Hide private stuff when using the always-on display
The biggest new feature of Series 5 is its always-on display that lets you tell time discreetly and glance at other information displayed on the watch face while in a meeting or working out without having to flip over your wrist. Thankfully, you may also choose to hide any sensitive information from the prying eyes when your wrist is down.
Start by firing up the Watch app on your iPhone, then tap My Watch → Brightness & Text Size → Always On and flip the toggle Hide Sensitive Complications to the OFF position. Doing so will hide any complications that display private data when your wrist is down, including Calendar appointments, Mail messages and your heart rate.
4. Delete native apps
watchOS lets you delete stock apps from the Home screen similar to iOS devices. Let’s pretend you’d like to get rid of Apple’s stock News app — tap and hold its icon on the Home screen, then hit “x” and confirm the action by tapping Delete App. Don’t worry, you can redownload deleted stock apps by searching for them in App Store.
5. Make use of double the storage
Series 5 doubles the internal storage over its predecessors from sixteen to 32 gigabytes. This lets you keep more content on the device itself, from apps to your favorite photos to Apple Music playlists, songs and albums and beyond. This should come in handy if you don’t have an LTE watch so streaming via cellular isn’t an option.
6. Reorder your watch faces
Like before, you can still edit watch faces and complications directly on the watch itself or via the Watch app on your iPhone, But now, watchOS 6 also lets you reorder them to your liking — press and hold the watch face to enter Edit mode, then drag the watch face to a new position. It’ll be right there the next time you swipe through your watch faces.
7. Pick any band you want
At long last, you are no longer confined to Apple’s combinations of Apple Watch bands and case materials. With Apple Watch Series 5, you can mix and match bands and cases materials any way you like, whether in store or online.
8. Noise app
Be sure to check out the Noise app (and put a Noise complication on your favorite watch face) if you’d like to be alerted about exposure to noise levels that could damage your hearing. This feature may decrease battery life so use it sparingly and only when it makes sense (as in, you don’t need a Noise complication on your nighttime watch face).
9. Keep tabs on your heart
Like with Series 4, Series 5 includes an electrocardiogram that could actually save your life be spotting adverse heart rate effects even if you’re unaware of them, such as when your heart rate is speeding up a lot while you’re not really doing anything physically demanding.
10. Finding iPhone in the dark
This is an oldie, but goldie. After you bring up Control Center and tap the phone icon, the watch will ping your misplaced iPhone via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. But if you tap and hold that same Control Center toggle, doing so shall make your phone flash. That’s pretty great if you have no clue where your phone is or want to locate it in the dark!
More tips from iDB
There’s more from where these came from!
We have some additional quick video tips that are really handy and only take a couple of minutes to watch. My favorite reveals a nifty trick that will dramatically speed up your Apple Watch software updates. If you’re the kind of person who likes to get the most out of their devices, be sure to also watch our tips’n’tricks for iPhone as well as for iPad, including the time-saving multitouch gestures in iPadOS that will boost your productivity tremendously.
Still wondering whether Series 5 is worth an upgrade?
Watch our video review to find out if Series 5 is for you!
Share your own tips
Some of the above tips may be too obvious, but we think Series 5 owners will find them useful anyway. You may disagree with some of the features covered in this write-up, but that’s OK — this is why we love hearing from your, boys and girls, as we’re sure the iDB community will surface a few gems we haven’t included on our list.
So without further ado, please be sure to leave your own tips for Apple Watch Series 5 (and earlier) in the commenting section down below.