How to Turn Off GPS on Apple Watch

Apple’s line of smart wearables, the Apple Watch, is the perfect solution for staying connected on the go. You can listen to music, answer phone calls, pay for your coffee, and even use GPS location services to keep you on track.

How to Turn Off GPS on Apple Watch

With all of its great benefits, some users’ may be concerned about their privacy or their battery life. Whether you want to turn off your Apple Watch’s GPS functions to save battery, or to have a little privacy, we’ll show you how in this article.

Fortunately, you have a couple of options to turn GPS off on your Apple Watch. We’ll review them below!

Turn Off GPS Location on Watch

Those pesky location services are already enough of an annoyance, always draining that already low battery life. You just want to listen to some music on your way home without your phone dying on you!

Sure, you can turn them on when you want directions or check the weather, but otherwise, they should stay turned off.

Luckily, turning services off only requires a few taps of your fingers. Simply do the following:

Click the Digital Crown on the side of your watch (the circular dial). Then, tap the Settings icon in your app list. Tap on ‘General.’

Next, scroll down to ‘Privacy.’ Then, tap on ‘Location Services.’

Toggle the ‘Location Services‘ option off.

That’s all there is to it. Now, your GPS location is off on your Apple Watch.

Turn Off GPS From Phone

Alternatively, and some people prefer this option, you can just turn off the GPS for your Workout app if you’re using it. While your iPhone won’t give you the option to completely disable the Apple Watch’s Location Services, you can turn off a couple of the features these services actually use.

To do so, go to your iPhone’s settings menu.

Then, just like above, enter your Privacy and then Location Services menu. There, if the app is installed, locate the Apple Watch Workout and set it to “Never”.

After you’ve set Apple Watch Workout to ‘Never,’ select the option for Apple Watch Faces and do the same.

Keep in mind that when it’s turned off, the Watch won’t be able to use GPS data or record a map for your route if you’ve decided to track your outdoor activities via the app.

Battery Tips

While this will certainly help with your battery life in the long run, there are always a few more things you can do. If you’d like to check out some tips on the subject, read through the list below.

turn off GPS on Apple Watch

Turn Off Animations

While they do make the watch look like it came out of a sci-fi movie, those seamless transitions come at a cost. If you’re not too worried about the interface being a bit more rigid, then don’t be afraid to turn off the melding animation and transparency effects.

You can locate the settings for both in the Accessibility section on the Watch app.

Turn Off HRM

By setting the heart rate monitor to not monitor you, you’re going to save some precious battery life as well. Especially if you’re not using the watch for fitness-related activities too often.

Just like above, head to the Watch app on your iPhone and then the Motion & Fitness menu and turn it off there.

Apple Watch How to Turn off GPS

Power Saving Mode for Workouts

On the other hand, if you’re using the watch for workouts, then you can simply turn on the power saving mode for the HRM. It will automatically disable it during running or walking exercises.

Head over to the General section and turn it on there.

Turn Off Siri

While she may be helpful, Siri’s constant expectancy of you saying those two words to summon her like a genie will leave a mark on your battery. It might be best to just communicate with her via your phone.

To turn off Siri, simply switch her off in the General section.

Turn Off Sound

It’s a good way to keep you notified of any messages on your phone, for instance, but not so good when it comes to prolonging your battery life. If you prefer not to have sound cues, just turn off the sound notifications completely by tapping on the bell icon in the notification tray.

Turn Off Haptic Feedback

If you’re not a fan of sound notifications, then you may be using haptic feedback – essentially a small vibration that lets you know something is up, kind of like when you turn on silent mode for your phone. This, however, does drain the battery too, so if you’re not too keen on keeping up, just turn it off.

Go into the Settings menu, and then Sounds & Haptics. There you can adjust the strength as well as turn them off completely.

Reduce the Colors

Some of the watch faces available to users do tend to drain the battery life more than usual, due to their vibrancy and use of color. If you’re not terribly bothered by having a monochrome or darker watch face, then consider swapping to one of those when you want to prolong the battery’s life.

After all, it’s more efficient for the AMOLED display, and will buy some extra time when you’re in an emergency or just want to keep the watch alive a bit longer.

Apple Watch

Battery: 1%

And that’s about it for our battery life tips! These pointers should keep you going for a bit longer when using your watch, in some cases buying you only minutes, but when minutes are what you need, then every little helps.

Frequently Asked Questions

If I put my Watch in Airplane Mode, will it disable the Location Services?

Yes. If you put your watch into Airplane mode by pulling the screen up from the bottom and tap on the Airplane icon, your watch will not connect to the network. This means that it will not show your location.

Can I get directions using my Apple Watch?

Absolutely! One of the best functions of GPS is finding directions to nearby places. The easiest way to get directions on your Apple Watch is by asking Siri. Simply say “Hey Siri, give me directions to…” and Apple Maps will appear.

Of course, you can also open the apps menu on your Apple Watch by clicking the Digital Crown and clicking on the Maps icon. From here, choose how you’d like to input your request (Scribble, Dictation, Contacts, etc.) and put the location into Apple Maps. Siri will give you turn-by-turn directions to get you to your destination.

Have you ever had any problems turning off the GPS on your Apple Watch? Let us know in the comments section below.

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