How to Close Apps on an Apple Watch

Start with the side button on your watch to find and stop greedy apps from running down your battery (or get rid of apps you no longer need)

What to Know

  • Press and release the side button on the Apple Watch one time.
  • Scroll through the active apps with your finger or the digital crown.
  • Swipe an app from right to left and tap the large red X to close it.

This article explains how to close an active app on your Apple Watch Series 3 or later. It also includes information on how to force close apps and how to reboot the Apple Watch.

How to Close Apps on Apple Watch

If your Apple Watch slows down, loses battery charge quickly, or is stuck in a program, it may be time to close a few apps. Closing apps you're not using gives your Apple Watch a fresh start, restores its usefulness, and helps you get back to work.

Follow these steps to clean up the active apps on your Apple Watch by closing those you aren't using:

  1. On your Apple Watch, press and release the side button (not the digital crown) once.

  2. Using your finger or the digital crown, scroll through the open apps.

    Press the side button on an Apple Watch and scroll through active apps
  3. Select the app you want to close and swipe from right to left on it. Tap the large X in a red box to close the app.

    Swipe on the app and press the X to close it

Closing an app does not remove it from the Apple Watch.

How to Force Close Apps on the Apple Watch

When an app freezes on your Apple Watch, press and hold the side button until the shutdown screen appears, and then press and hold the digital crown until the app closes.

You must be in the app to force it to close.

How to Reboot an Apple Watch

If your Apple Watch is struggling to close an app with either of the above methods, reboot it. There are two ways to do this:

  • Restart the Apple Watch by holding down the side button and sliding Power Off.
  • Force restart an unresponsive watch to reboot by holding down the side button and the digital crown at the same time until it powers off.

While your Apple Watch has a companion app on the iPhone, you need to manage the apps running on your Apple Watch directly from the wearable.

FAQ
  • How do you add apps to an Apple Watch?

    To add apps to an Apple Watch, navigate to the App Store app on your watch. Tap search, and then tap an app you want to add. On its information screen, tap the download arrow to add it to your watch.

  • How do I remove apps from an Apple Watch?

    To remove apps from an Apple Watch, press the digital crown to bring up your apps. Tap and hold the app icon (or its name in List View) for the app you want to remove until it starts to wiggle. You'll see an X; tap it to delete the app and tap Delete App to confirm.

  • What apps can you get on the Apple Watch?

    The Apple Watch comes with a collection of over 40 helpful built-in apps, and the burgeoning Apple Watch app market is growing as more developers create Apple Watch app versions. Visit our list of the 12 best Apple Watch apps to get an idea of the scope of apps available.

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