watchOS 5: How to manually connect to Wi-Fi

Arguably, one of the more infuriating things with Apple Watch Series 3 is the Wi-Fi functionality when away from iPhone. Previously, Apple Watch would inherit its list of Wi-Fi SSID’s from your iPhone, with no way to see or modify that list.

Luckily, with watchOS 5, Apple has built-in a method to allow Apple Watch to have its own list of Wi-Fi networks, and also allow the user to manually connect to a Wi-Fi network.

  1. Head on into the Settings app on Apple Watch. watchOS 5 will now have a new Wi-Fi option, tap that and give it a few seconds to search for nearby Wi-Fi networks.
  2. Once it’s done searching, tap on the Wi-Fi network you would like to connect to.
  3. You’ll now be prompted to Scribble your Wi-Fi password into Apple Watch. For letters such as c, o, s, u, v, w, x, or z which look the same in both its upper- and lower-case form, simply use the Digital Crown to select the proper variation. This goes for special characters as well. Noe that, unlike Scribble, you’ll need to spell out each character one by one, each time waiting on a visual indicator that the character has been typed.
  4. Once done Scribbling the password, go ahead and tap the Join button on the top right corner.

In its current state, Wi-Fi will only activate when not on near your phone as it always has been. However, this lets the Watch be more independent of iPhone as it now can join Wi-Fi networks without needing to join it on iPhone first.

For more help getting the most out of your Apple devices, check out our how to guide as well as the following articles:

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