How to Unlock Your Mac with Your Apple Watch

You can skip the Touch ID or password step when unlocking your Mac if you're wearing your Apple Watch.

We have passcodes and Touch ID to keep our information secure when our devices are locked, but this extra step can get irritating when you use many devices at once. We’ll show you how to unlock your Mac with an Apple Watch to save a step.

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

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Add a Passcode to Your Apple Watch

Once you have this set up, when your watch is near the computer and unlocked, it will unlock your computer. Before you can use an Apple Watch to unlock a Mac, you have to enable the passcode on your Apple Watch. Your Apple Watch will also need to be running WatchOS 3 or later in order to use the Auto Unlock function. Once you have a passcode enabled, you can move on to the next step.

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Related: How to Open Your Apple Watch with Your iPhone

How to Unlock a Mac with an Apple Watch

If you have a passcode enabled on your Apple Watch and your Mac meets Apple's system requirements for Auto Unlock, you can use your Apple Watch to unlock your Mac. This tip works on most MacBook, iMac, and Mac mini models since 2013 or 2014. Here's how to set up unlock with Apple Watch on your Mac:

  1. Open System Preferences.

    Open System Preferences on your Mac
     
  2. Click on Security & Privacy.

    Click on Security & Privacy
     
  3. Click on the General tab if you're not already on it.

    Click on the General tab if you're not already there
     
  4. Click the gray box next to Use your Apple Watch to unlock apps and your Mac or Allow your Apple Watch to unlock your Mac, whichever option is available to you.

    Click the gray box next to Use your Apple Watch to unlock apps and your Mac or Allow your Apple Watch to unlock your Mac
     
  5. You will be prompted to enter your Mac password to allow this change.
  6. Enter your password and click Unlock.

    Enter your Mac password and click Unlock

Now you know how to unlock your Mac with your Apple watch. If you decide you don't like having a passcode on your Apple Watch and end up disabling it, you will no longer be able to use your Apple Watch to unlock your Mac, so keep that in mind!

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Author Details

Erin Smith's picture

Author Details

Erin Smith

Erin Smith is a Web Editor for iPhone Life and has been a writer, editor, and researcher for many years. She has a degree in communication with an emphasis on psychology and communication, and has spent many of her professional years as a coach in various business and specialty fields. Erin officially joined the ranks of iPhone and Apple users everywhere around nine years ago, and has since enjoyed the unique and customized feel of Apple technology and its many gadgets. When she’s not working, Erin and her son enjoy outdoor adventures, camping, and spending time with their eclectic collection of pets.