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Backing Up Your Apple Watch

The Apple Watch moves everything from your smartphone and puts it straight onto your watch. Okay, so it can’t quite do everything that the device in your pocket can, but it can do much more than just tell the time.

Like any other computer, be it your desktop, laptop, tablet or phone, the Apple Watch has its own data needs. This means that you need to take care of it and make sure that your data is backed up correctly. Conversely, you also need to know how to restore that data, along with how to wipe everything if need be.

Before we continue, you need to know what Apple will include in your backup. This is:

• App-specific data (built-in apps only) and settings (all apps)
• Some system settings, like watch face, sound, Wi-Fi networks
• Health and fitness data
• Language
• Settings for Mail, Calendar, Stocks and Weather
• Time zone

On the other hand, the following won’t be included in the backup:

• Bluetooth pairings
• Payments cards used for Apple Pay
• Passcode
• Playlists synced

Firstly, your Apple Watch will automatically back up every time you connect to iTunes or sync the iPhone that it’s paired with. Additionally, if you have iCloud activated then it’ll automatically back up there too. You can check all of this within your Settings, but it’s good to have the peace of mind that your data is being saved in multiple methods without user input.

There is a way to force the backup process to activate when you need it to. You could backup your iPhone, which will take the latest capture it has of the Watch, but if you want to ensure your data copy is very up-to-date then there’s some steps to take.

Firstly, you’ll need to unpair your watch from the phone. To do this, open the Apple Watch app on your paired iPhone, navigate to the menu and then select ‘Unpair Apple Watch’. Confirm the process. This will then take a backup of your Watch data and unpair it from your iPhone. This will wipe all the data from the Watch, however.

If you want to restore the data, that’s simply. First, open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone. Then select ‘Start Pairing’ and follow the process through to create the pair. When prompted, select ‘Restore from Backup’ and choose which backup you want to restore from the list.

If you want to wipe your Apple Watch and don’t have access to the paired iPhone or don’t care about the data on it, first push the watch crown down to open your apps and then select Settings. From here, go to General and then Reset. Now select ‘Erase All Content and Settings’ and enter your passcode, if you have one. Read the warning and if you’re happy to proceed, press ‘Continue’.

If you don’t know the passcode, don’t worry. You can factory reset the Watch. First, plug a charging cable in. Then, press and hold the side button until the power menu opens. Then press and hold on ‘Power off’. A button named ‘Erase all contents and settings’ will open – push this to perform the action.

Remember, backing up your data is crucial, but handily the Apple Watch will consistently do this for you automatically.


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