Why is my Apple Watch Ringing and Not my Phone

We enjoy our Apple Watches and their many features. Features such as receiving and taking calls, text message notifications, and more attract many people to Apple Watches. Though excellent in quality and functionality, issues can still arise. One common issue is having your Apple Watch ring instead of your phone, why is that?

An Apple Watch will ring and not the phone because of a bug in the system. This is a common issue that can be easily fixed with a system update. Other issues can be due to desynchronization, using non-Apple products with the watch, or failure to pair.

As you can see, it isn’t a complicated task to fix this ringing issue. Usually updating the system will do the trick, but we will explore other reasons as to why it may display this issue and how to resolve these as well. We hope to help you be familiar with your Apple Watch, or a similar product, in knowing how to fix the issue.

Apple Watch Ringing and Not my Phone

Bug in an Outdated System

The first issue we will address is when the Apple Watch rings and not the phone because of an outdated system.

This issue is a common issue that many forget about, and to resolve this, you’re going to have to check to make sure if the system is updated to the current version. If it’s not, then you will need to update it, and then it should start working properly.

It doesn’t take a genius to know how to properly update the system, but if you haven’t done it before, then follow these simple steps. Start by updating the system from your iPhone, and then update your Apple Watch.

First, open the Watch app on your phone. Navigate to the “My Watch” section. Once you’re there, tap General, then select Software Update. At that point, you will be able to see the available updates and see if you need to install any new ones.

Once you’re done with that, you’re going to need to update the software on your Apple Watch. Navigate to the Settings screen on your Apple Watch, and select General. Like you did on your phone, choose Software Update. That will show you the newest version of the software available that’s compatible with your watch. Update to that version.

If that doesn’t work, make sure that your phone is using the latest version of iOS. If everything is properly updated, and you’re still having trouble, then it could be a different issue. Let’s move on to find the solution.

Desynchronization/Failure to Pair

Apple Watch Ringing and Not my Phone

A second reason why the Apple Watch rings but not your phone may be due to a disruption in the connected devices.

This could be because the devices that are connected are too far from each other, and other signal disruptors are nearby, hindering and weakening connection strength. Another possible cause is that continued use of a non-Apple product may slowly move out of sync with the Apple Watch because of possible incapability or lower quality non-Apple product.

Using non-Apple products may also result in the failure to pair with the Apple Watch in the first place. Either the Apple Watch does not recognize the non-Apple product or pairing takes longer than usual, both are common issues as well. Again, check if the Apple Watch needs an update for recognition of non-Apple products. Most Apple Watches will pair with non-Apple devices.

The solution to pair and resync is to unpair and then repair the two devices. Assuming both the Apple Watch and the phone being paired is updated, follow these simple steps:

  • Enable Bluetooth on Apple Watch and phone.
  • Open Apple Watch app on your phone.
  • Make sure the Apple Watch is on and select “Start Pairing”. Automatic or manual pairing are options depending on phone brand and function.
  • Once feedback from both devices is paired, you’re done. Additional steps to personalize the paired devices is a personal preference.
  • If the issue persists, reach out to professional help such as Apple support.

Other Solutions

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As we have addressed some possible solutions for fixing bugs in the system and desynchronization/pairing issues, we will address some other solutions not connected to either of these. These are the solutions you should try if neither of the above solutions worked.

Muting your watch could be a good idea when nothing else works. Keeping it muted for a time may be the best option, especially if you do not want to hear the noise constantly ringing. Muting is the best option when you want to continue the immediate use of your Apple Watch. But, if that just stops your phone from ringing at all, you’ll need to try something else.

Another solution is to hard reset your Apple Watch. We’ve done this many times with other devices, such as our laptops or television screens, and it works often enough that it’s become the meme representing IT. Hard resetting has a chance to fix the issue, but it should never be the first thing you try, and it might not work. Try it to see if it works.

Turning off your watch may be another option if you feel that it will ring out of nowhere. This solution assumes that you are not planning on using it for now. Turning the Apple Watch off will prevent any unnecessary ringing, especially at times when it should be the quietest.

Finally, if all else fails, as we have briefly mentioned in the previous section as a final step, reach out to a trained professional for additional assistance. They are there to help with whatever you have and will try their best to address the issue and find resolutions for it.

Is it the Design Feature?

One more thing to check is whether your phone is locked when your Apple Watch rings. If your phone is always locked when your watch rings, then you don’t actually have a problem. The Apple Watch is designed to ring when it’s the dominant device, meaning that when it’s in use and your phone isn’t, the watch will ring instead of the phone.