Home Apple Tips How to Set Up an Apple Watch for a Family Member

How to Set Up an Apple Watch for a Family Member

by Dewi Safitri

With Family Setup, you can use your iPhone to set up and manage an Apple Watch for a family member, such as a child, who doesn’t have their own iPhone. We’ll cover how to pair your child’s Apple Watch with your iPhone, and walk you through how to set up some Apple Watch features. We’ll also show you how to change your child’s Apple Watch settings. Before you start, make sure you’ve updated your iPhone to iOS 14 or later and that your child has an Apple Watch Series 4 or later with


You and your child also need to be part of a Family Sharing group. If you’re not already, you can do this during setup. First, let’s pair your child’s Apple Watch with your iPhone. Ask your child to put the Apple Watch on, bring it near your iPhone and tap “Continue” at the bottom of your iPhone screen. Then tap “Set Up for a Family Member” and tap “Continue”.

Next, ask your child to hold the Apple Watch underneath your iPhone camera. Once the watch is paired, tap “Set Up Apple Watch”. During the next part of the setup process, we’ll set up some of the features on your child’s Apple Watch. Continue to follow the prompts until you reach the “Family Sharing” screen. 

You and your child must be part of the same Family Sharing group in order for their Apple Watch to work. If you haven’t used Family Sharing before, you can create a Family Sharing group during this part of the setup process. Tap “Use Existing Apple ID” if your child already has an Apple ID or tap “Create New Apple ID” if they don’t have one yet. Then, follow the prompts to create your group.

When you reach the “Cellular Setup” screen, follow the prompts to activate the cellular plan for your child’s Apple Watch. You can add a plan with the same cellular carrier as your iPhone, or a different carrier, if your carrier doesn’t support Family Setup. When you get to the Health data screen, tap Request “Health Data” to ask your child if they want to share their “Health data” with your iPhone.

Your child will be asked to approve or deny this request on their Apple Watch. Ask them to tap “Share” if they approve. Next, follow the onscreen steps to set up Emergency SOS, emergency contacts, and Medical ID information. You can set up any of these features later in the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, as well.

You can also use “Screen Time” to set limits for how your child uses their watch, including who they can message. If you already use Screen Time with your child and they have contacts set up, they will sync automatically during this process. If not, you can select which contacts from your iPhone to share with your child’s Apple Watch. Next, you can set up a “Screen Time passcode”. You can make additional Screen Time changes, like communication limits, later in Settings.

Schooltime can help your child focus during school hours by restricting access to apps and notifications. Tap Turn on Schooltime, then adjust the days and hours. Tap Done when you’re finished. Tap OK, and you’re all done setting up your child’s Apple Watch. Once you’ve set it up, you can change your child’s Apple Watch settings any time. In the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, tap All Watches in the upper-left corner. If you and your child are in different locations, you can change certain settings, like Schooltime, by tapping the “i” next to your child’s Apple Watch. Or if your child is nearby, tap the image of your child’s Apple Watch to adjust any of its settings. And that’s it!

Now your family member is ready to get started with their Apple Watch. To learn more about your Apple products, subscribe to the Apple Support channel, or click another video to keep watching.


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