Apple Watch Stopped Vibrating for Alarms and Notifications

Apple Watch is one of the prominent shareholders of the smartwatch market. But like any smart device, it has its share of bugs. One of such bugs is when Apple Watch does not vibrate for notifications and alarms, and can cause the user to miss important notifications and alarms.

Apple Watch Not Vibrating for Alarms and Notifications

What to do if your Apple Watch will not Vibrate?

Before proceeding with the solutions below, please ensure that:

Silent mode is not enabled on your Apple Watch and you are wearing the device correctly around your wrist so that the lower part of the watch is making the right contact with your wrist. There is also a delicate balance in your Apple Watch and the linked iPhone for showing the notifications and alarms. Remember that you need an ON iPhone but not ‘open/unlocked /active’ to get alarms and notifications on your Apple Watch. Following are the two scenarios for notifications and alarms between both the devices:

    • If you are using your iPhone i.e. it is open/unlocked/active then not all notifications will be shown on your iPhone.
    • If your iPhone is ‘asleep/locked/closed‘ but “ON” (even if it is not located anywhere near your Apple Watch), then notifications will be shown on your Apple Watch.

If the issue remains after following the advice above, then proceed with the solutions listed below.

1. Restart Your Apple Watch

The first step in troubleshooting any computer device should be restarting it. Apple Watch is also a small size computer device and restarting it, may solve our problem by resetting its configurations and parameters.

  1. Press and hold the side button until the prompt of Power Off is displayed.
    Power Off Apple Watch
  2. Now slide the slider of the “Power Off” to the left.
  3. After Apple Watch has turned off, press and hold the side button until the Apple logo is displayed.
    Power On Apple Watch Till the Apple Logo is Shown
  4. Now set a test alarm to check if it functioning properly.

2. Enable Prominent Haptics

The Apple Watch has two levels of vibration; one standard option and the other is Prominent Haptics. The Prominent Haptics is more vigorous as compared to the Standard version of vibration. So, enabling the Prominent Haptics version may solve the problem.

  1. Open Settings of your Apple Watch.
    Open Settings of Apple Watch
  2. Scroll down till you find “Sounds & Haptics” and then tap on it.
    Open Sounds & Haptics
  3. Now under the Haptic Strength, toggle the switch of the “Prominent Haptic” to ON and Apple Watch will give you a sample vibration of the new settings.
    Enable Prominent Haptic
  4. Now set a test Alarm to check if it is functioning properly.

3. Disable and Re-Enable Wrist Detection

Wrist detection is an Apple Watch feature that automatically locks your watch when you’re not wearing it. If your Apple Watch is unlocked (whether the screen is asleep/awake) and on your wrist, then you will receive notifications on your watch. Due to a software glitch, it can cause non-vibration of Apple Watch for notifications and alarms, even when you are wearing it. In that case, disabling and re-enabling wrist detection may solve the problem. To complete this step, the linked iPhone with the Apple Watch will be used.

  1. On your linked iPhone, open the Apple Watch app.
  2. At the bottom of the screen, tap on My Watch option.
  3. Then tap on General.
    Open General option of My Watch App
  4. Now toggle the switch of the Wrist Detection to OFF.
    Turn Off Wrist Detection
  5.  To confirm, click on Turn Off.
  6. Now restart your Apple Watch as mentioned in the 1st solution.
  7. Now re-enable the Wrist Detection (follow steps 1 to 4).
    Turn On Wrist Detection
  8. Now check if your Apple Watch is vibrating for the alarms and notifications.

4. Create a Silent Alarm on iPhone

Sometimes a software glitch can cause Apple Watch to “think” that the alarm has gone off on the linked iPhone. In that case, setting-up a silent alarm on your iPhone can make your Watch to start vibrating for alarms and notifications.

  1. On your linked iPhone, open the Clock and then tap the Alarm tab.
  2. Tap + icon to add a new alarm.
    Add New Alarm on iPhone
  3. Now set the Sound of the alarm to none /silent.
    Set Sound of Alarm to Silent
  4. Tap Save.
  5. Now open the Apple Watch app.
  6. Tap My Watch and then tap Clock.
  7. Now turn on Push Alerts from iPhone.
    Enable Push Alerts From iPhone

Hopefully, your Apple Watch is vibrating for notifications and alarms, if not, try unpair and re-pair the watch.

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Kevin Arrows


Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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Apple Watch Stopped Vibrating for Alarms and Notifications

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