How to Play Music from Your Apple Watch

By Marc Saltzman

Not all smartwatches let you store music on your wrist, so you don’t need a nearby smartphone, but Apple Watch does indeed offer this feature. After all, sometimes, you might not have your phone with you, such as when you go out for a jog for a few minutes, so why shouldn’t you be able to listen to your favorite high-energy music to keep you pumped up?

But this convenience comes with two limitations:

  • Sound: For one, Apple Watch has no headphone jack; therefore, you need a pair of Bluetooth headphones wirelessly paired with your smartwatch in order to hear anything stored on it.

  • Space: You have some storage allocated for music and probably enough for many, but it’s considerably smaller than what your iPhone, iPad, and computer can store. Specifically, you’ve got up to 2 gigabytes of internal storage on Apple Watch, which is the equivalent of about 500 songs (at roughly 4 megabytes each).

Once you accept these caveats, follow these steps to transfer music on your Apple Watch from an iPhone:

  1. Connect your Apple Watch to your PC or Mac via its USB charger.

    Use the special magnetic charger that shipped with your Apple Watch.

  2. On your iPhone, open the Apple Watch app.

  3. Under My Watch, scroll down and tap Music.

    Music is the red icon with a white music note on it. You have to scroll down a bit once the Music screen opens because of many settings here, along with apps installed on your Apple Watch.

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  4. Under Synced Playlist, tap the word None to change it and then choose the one you’d like from the list of options.

    Those options include:

    • My Top Rated

    • Recently Added

    • Recently Played

    • Top 25 Most Played

    • Purchased

    You should also see custom-made playlists you’ve already created on your iPhone or iTunes (such as “Awesome Driving Tunes,” ‘’90s Grunge,” or “Reggae Mix”). Based on which selection you make, the relevant songs are transferred to your Apple Watch. You should see the words Sync Pending and then Synced. Keep in mind that the more songs you synchronize, the longer it takes to copy them to Apple Watch.

Don’t worry about transferring too many tunes over to Apple Watch, as Apple won’t let you go over your allotted storage of 2 gigabytes.

Have songs stored on your Apple Watch? To listen to music on your Apple Watch rather than your iPhone, follow these steps:

  1. Press and hold the Apple Watch screen (Force Touch) while in the Music app to launch a couple options.

    You should see options for Shuffle, Repeat, AirPlay, and Device.

  2. Tap Device and you should see you’re able to toggle between your devices.

    It says: “Choose a music source to play from: iPhone and Apple Watch.”

  3. Select Apple Watch.

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    Once you tap Apple Watch, the screen should say “Pair a Bluetooth headset to listen to music on your Apple Watch.”

  4. Tap Settings and then choose a paired device from the list. Pick the one you’ve got with you.

    Now you’re ready to rock, roll, dance, swing, or relax.