Keep forgetting my phone, yet the watch still gets iMessage.

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by duckduckgoose, May 8, 2015.

  1. duckduckgoose macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    #1
    I've had my watch since launch date and I've forgotten to take my phone to work 4 times now. Although pretty stupid, I feel like this is a good indication of how much value I find in using my watch and how its changed my approach to notifications and the amount of time spent on my phone.

    Anyway one thing has confused me. Having forgotten my phone I have still managed to receive iMessages to my watch, even though the watch is indicating that it isn't connected to the phone. Im assuming this is because my watch is remembering wifi networks it has used to stay in contact with my iPhone. Quite surprised that this is the case, seems the watch isn't so lost without the phone!
     
  2. phpmaven macrumors 68040

    phpmaven

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    #2
    The watch will remember any known networks that you've connected to with your iPhone and connect to them on its own even if you don't have your phone. This is something that a a lot of us knew, but it's good to see that it works well in the real world.
     
  3. BrettDS macrumors 6502a

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    Location:
    Orlando
    #3
    As the pp said, the watch will be able to connect to wifi networks that you've joined with your phone, but it's got very limited functionality without the phone.

    I believe that these are the only options:

    Send and receive messages using iMessage
    Send and receive Digital Touch messages
    Use Siri
     
  4. Xarthan macrumors regular

    Xarthan

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    Jul 11, 2008
    #4
    that is sweet, i'm guessing your work isn't running WPA Enterprise?

    This feature doesn't seem to work at my work :(
     
  5. Subdiv macrumors 6502

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    Colorado
    #5
    I just tested this on my home wifi...turned off bluetooth, and was able to still receive Gmail through the Gmail app, Outlook mail through the stock email app, control music on my iPhone with the watch, get weather updates, get map directions...I think everything works. I thought I had read somewhere that this would be the case.
     
  6. xraydoc macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

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    #6
    That's because the watch and phone are still communicating over the same wifi network, even without Bluetooth.

    But if the phone and watch aren't on the same wifi network, the watch's functionality will go down. The watch doesn't have its own email client, etc., though it does have its own iMessage client.
     
  7. mightyjabba macrumors 65816

    mightyjabba

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    #7
    This is a bit of a digression, but after reading the post above, I was reminded of Apple's page about batteries, which has this entry:

    Although I hadn't heard of this, it seems to indicate that the watch can communicate with your phone using only wifi instead of bluetooth (although it will be worse in terms of battery life). That would explain what the poster above experienced. Can someone test this out by turning off bluetooth outside of the range of a known wifi network? I can't at the moment.
     
  8. Subdiv macrumors 6502

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    Colorado
    #8
    I just turned off bluetooth, left wifi on, and unplugged my Airport Extreme. The watch stopped communicating and showed the "no phone connection" icon. I think that simulates the test you are asking for.
    As an aside, the one thing I bet doesn't work when you are on a known wifi connection and turn bluetooth off is getting or placing phone calls. Pretty sure that's a bluetooth function.
     
  9. fischersd macrumors 68040

    fischersd

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    #9
    Ah, but you can make your iPhone a hotspot! :) See if the watch connection works over that. :)

    (not that there's a lot of usefulness to that...maybe slightly better range than bluetooth).
     
  10. HopefulHumanist macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 28, 2015
    #10
    Your phone can't connect to its own hotspot so the watch won't connect either.
     
  11. Subdiv macrumors 6502

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    #11
    This.
     
  12. fischersd, May 8, 2015
    Last edited: May 8, 2015

    fischersd macrumors 68040

    fischersd

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    #12
    Hmm. No way to manually add it as a wifi profile, so the watch picks it up?

    (yes, I could easily try that myself) :) ...let's see...

    Yep - these are replicated to your mac via iCloud, no? (really can't see that I ever would have taken my macbook to all of these bars)

    So, if you enable the wifi hotspot on your phone, have your mac connect to it, it becomes a member of your remembered networks. And, just possibly, the apple watch will connect to it.

    Now, as mine is still on order, one of you could send me your watch to test further? ;) hehe
     
  13. Subdiv macrumors 6502

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    #13
    Doesn't work...but aren't remembered networks specific to devices? In other words, if you bring your iPhone to work and sign onto a wifi network, then try to connect to that same wifi with your mac, it won't know the password...right?
     
  14. fischersd macrumors 68040

    fischersd

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    #14
    Hmm. I might be able to try that with my macbook then. (I'll to a test for updates on my home wifi first) :)
     
  15. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    Jun 20, 2010
    #15
    I'm getting different results with wifi. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. I first realized the watch doesn't use 5ghz which is all I have at home. Also, it seems to get confused with multiple ssids that are on the same network. Do the watch and phone communicate with each other or does the watch have its own client?
     
  16. fischersd macrumors 68040

    fischersd

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    #16
    Ok, it worked.

    The watch doesn't have a 5GHz radio. It only supports 802.11 bgn, not AC

    The watch/phone communicate over either bluetooth or wifi. There is a watch app on the iPhone. That's used for configuration, etc. - more than that, I can't say - I don't have mine yet.
     
  17. Subdiv, May 8, 2015
    Last edited: May 8, 2015

    Subdiv macrumors 6502

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    #17
    The watch has its own client. Disregard my previous answer here.
     
  18. fischersd macrumors 68040

    fischersd

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    #18
    Then how does it connect over wifi?
     
  19. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    Jun 20, 2010
    #19
    So it uses wifi direct instead of communicating directly with the AP? That would explain why I couldn't connect with my watch on 2.4Ghz and my phone on 5ghz though on the same ssid. Looks like I'll have to configure different ssids and force the phone to use 2.4Ghz N instead of 5ghz AC.
     
  20. danmart macrumors 6502

    danmart

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    #20
    If you use iCloud it shares all known wifi networks between your devices. I took my MBP to a friend's house for the first time recently, and it connected to their wifi immediately as I had previously accessed it on my iPhone.
     
  21. Subdiv macrumors 6502

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    Colorado
    #21
    I have to admit...I'm really not sure. I just had my watch working on wifi, and then shut my iPhone completely off. I then sent myself an email from my mac, and got no notification on the watch. It probably has some background process going with the iPhone app which allows it to use wifi....?
     
  22. fischersd macrumors 68040

    fischersd

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    #22
    Nope. It simply doesn't have its own e-mail client. iMessage works.

    Someone with a watch needs to try that. :)
     
  23. Subdiv macrumors 6502

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    #23
    Try what?
     
  24. fischersd macrumors 68040

    fischersd

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    Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
    #24
    Wrong - though the watch does get confused with multiple SSID's with the same name.

    The watch has its own network client. Connects to your AP. Only using b/g/n at 2.4GHz.

    It gets the stored wifi networks from the iPhone.
     
  25. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    Jun 20, 2010
    #25
    That makes sense. Does it constantly update new SSIDs or only use the ones on the phone and setup?
     

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