Whether you’re on the go or at home, Apple Watch’s Always-On display keeps you updated with the information you care about right at a glance. It can give you a glimpse of your unread messages or a look at the weather without pressing that button again.
The Always-On display is already enabled on the Apple Watch Series 5 and later as a default. However, if you don’t like how it looks or it isn’t working correctly, you can change its settings either from your iPhone or directly from your Apple Watch.
The Always-On display can be customized so that important information like your next calendar appointment, heart rate, or time is available to view at any time.
Nowadays, almost every Apple Watch has this feature, and it can be not very pleasant for some people, while others find it a welcome addition. It all comes down to user preference, and here’s how you can adjust it.
Method #1: Turn the Always-on Feature On From Your Apple Watch
The Always-On display means that you don’t have to tap the screen to check the time — it’s always on, just like on a regular digital watch, and all you have to do is glance down at your wrist to see its time.
But in case you’re not such a big fan of this feature, or if you’d like to conserve some battery, then here’s how you can customize it to your liking.
- Power on your Apple Watch by pressing the button on its side.
- Find the Settings app and click on it.
- Scroll down and tap on “Display & Brightness“.
- Click on “Always On” to find all the relevant settings.
- Toggle the “Always On” option on or off according to your preferences.
In addition, you can customize how information is displayed on your Apple Watch’s screen and choose the data, apps, and notifications that you want to appear.
Method #2: Turn the Always-on Feature On From Your iPhone
On the other hand, you can also turn off the Always-On feature from your iPhone. The steps are the same either way, and you have to decide which method works best for you.
If you’d like to customize the Always-On display of your Apple Watch from your iPhone, here’s how you can do it.
- Open the Watch app on your iPhone.
- Scroll down to the “Display & Brightness” option.
- Click on the “Always-On” option to bring up all the settings
- Toggle the option on or off according to your preferences.
In the same way, as on the Apple Watch, you can also choose to hide specific complication data when your wrist is down, such as your Calendar appointments, messages, heart rate, etc.
Managing the Information That Appears During Always-On Display
While it may seem like the Always-On display will give away your personal information to the public — you can choose which information is displayed on your Apple Watch when the screen is facing away from you.
This means that while your wrist is facing down, only the information you want will show, and here’s how you can manage that.
- Go to the Settings app on your Apple Watch or the Watch app on your iPhone.
- Click on “Display & Brightness“, then open up the Always-On display settings.
- Go to “Show Complications“, “Show Notifications“, or “Show Apps” to see all the information-displaying apps.
- You can turn off or on the apps that you don’t want to show information on the screen.
If you’re in a busy place and have concerns that someone may be able to see your information from glancing at your Apple Watch, you may opt to hide certain apps or notifications and so on from being displayed on the ambient screen.
Frequently Asked Questions
Turn on the Always-On display from settings. However, if this still doesn’t work, your Apple Watch might not support the Always-On display since it is only available in the Apple Watch Series 5 and later, excluding the Apple Watch SE.
With Always-On, Apple Watch continuously displays the watch’s face and time, even when your wrist remains down. However, if you’re wearing an Apple Watch SE or an older model, you can leave the display on for up to 70 seconds as they lack the Always-On display.
When you remove the Apple Watch from your wrist, it automatically turns off when it is not being worn. This wrist detection works by using the watch’s ability to detect your heart rate to know when you are wearing it and when you aren’t.
If you see a black screen on your Apple Watch with only the time displayed, this could be a sign that your watch is in power reserve mode. This is a low-power state where you can only see the time when you tap on it, and you cannot access any other watch features.
You need to make sure that your Apple Watch is fully charged since low power can also cause the screen to go black. This could also result from the Screen Curtain or Voiceover feature being turned on, which you can disable through the Watch app on your iPhone.