watchOS 5, the upcoming update for the Apple Watch, brings a range of powerful new features. One that got comparatively little attention, however, is the new ability to access the web directly from your watch.
It’s not an official feature, mind you, and it requires a small workaround to get it running. (And even when you do get it running, it’s not the perfect browsing environment, as you’d probably expect from a device with a 1.7in screen.) Nevertheless, in this brief tutorial we show how to access the web on your Apple Watch.
- First of all, you’ll need to be running watchOS 5, which is currently available in a developer beta. This also means you’ll need to be running an Apple Watch Series 1, 2 or 3 – the original Apple Watch is not certified for running watchOS 5.
- There’s no browser app on the watch. Instead, you need to receive a web link over iMessage. You can simply send yourself a link to the correct URL, or a link to Google from which you can search for other sites as normal.
- When your receive the Messages notification, tap the link to open the linked web page. You can now use the web as normal, although you may find that some on-page elements are hard to use, and that browsing in general is slow on even quite recent models of Apple Watch.