How to Stop Automatic App Install on the Apple Watch

Many of the apps on your iPhone have an Apple Watch version that you can use directly from the watch.

Sometimes these Watch app versions include some functionality that makes them more convenient to use than the full app on the iPhone. As you install an app on your iPhone, the corresponding Watch app will be installed automatically.

But if you find that you are running out of space on your Watch or that you do not need the Watch version of every app that you install, then you might choose to disable this option.

Our guide below will show you how to stop Watch apps from installing automatically on the device.

How to Prevent the Apple Watch from Installing Apps Automatically

The steps in this article were performed on an iPhone 7 Plus, in iOS 10. The Apple Watch being affected by these changes is running Watch OS 3.0.

Step 1: Open the Watch app on the iPhone.

open the watch app

Step 2: Select the My Watch option at the bottom-left corner of the screen.

open the my watch tab

Step 3: Scroll down and select the General option.

open the general menu

Step 4: Tap the button to the right of Automatic App Install to disable the setting. You will know that it is turned off when the button is in the left position, and there is no green shading around it. Automatic App Install is disabled on the Apple Watch in the image below.

stop apps from installing automatically on the apple watch

Note that this will not affect the apps that are currently installed on the Apple Watch. It will only prevent the automatic installation of new apps in the future.

Now that you know how to prevent automatic app installation on your Apple Watch, you can better control which apps are added to the device.

Do you use your Apple Watch to exercise, and would like to be able to do so without having your iPhone nearby? Find out how to sync a playlist to your Apple Watch so that you can listen to music directly from the watch, instead of through the iPhone.

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