Getting Turn-by-Turn Directions on Your Apple Watch

By Marc Saltzman

Part of Apple Watch For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Apple Maps — or simply Maps — is one of the built-in Apple Watch apps. As you might expect, it allows you to get directions from your current location to a destination of your choosing — with the app calculating the best route.

You should see — and feel — the turn-by-turn navigation instructions to guide you along the way, and you can always search for nearby businesses, such as a restaurant or a gas station, simply by asking Siri for it.

To use the Maps app on your Apple Watch, follow these steps:

  1. Press the Digital Crown button to go to your Home screen.

  2. Tap the Maps app.

    Or raise your wrist and say “Hey, Siri, Maps.” Either action will open the Maps app.

    When the app launches, an overhead map of your current location appears on the Apple Watch screen, and you can swipe in a given direction to move the map around or you can twist the Digital Crown button if you want to zoom in and out to see nearby streets or businesses.

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  3. Tap the blue icon in the lower left of the screen to return to your current location.

    This recenters the map to your specific location.

  4. To find a location, press and hold the screen to activate Siri and then speak an address or business name.

    This is the only way to “type” in an address or business name because Apple Watch doesn’t have a built-in keyboard.

  5. Tap the blue word Done in the top right of the screen after you see the correct location to which you wish to travel.

    If you want to see more information on a particular business, you can press the screen on the business name to see further details, provided by Yelp, such as the address and phone number (which you can call), hours of operation and if it’s open at that exact moment, and its star rating (average user rating out of five stars).

    You’ll also see an estimate on how long it might take to get there by foot or by car.

  6. Tap Start to map your route.

    Follow the instructions as you make your way to your destination. If you need to turn right, a steady series of a dozen taps are felt on your wrist at the intersection you’re approaching. To turn left, you should feel three pairs of two taps. If you’re walking, you can also glance down at your screen for visual cues — if it’s safe to do so and not while walking across a street.