You can actually delete Apple Watch apps in two ways

It’s easy to install and delete Apple Watch apps. 

Angela Lang/CNET

The Apple Watch has come a long way since its debut, becoming a must-have iPhone and fitness accessory for many Apple fans. The newest iteration of the wearable is the Apple Watch Series 7, but there are the Series 3 and Apple Watch SE models, too. (Check out CNET’s list of best smartwatches here.) Plus, there are over 20,000 apps you can download to your Watch. 


Whether you’ve had an Apple Watch from the beginning or just got one this holiday season (here are the best Apple Watch deals if you’re still looking to buy one), we’ve got everything you need to know about the apps that make the watch worthwhile — including how to install and delete them.

Here’s what you need to know about Apple Watch apps. 

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Apple Watch third-party apps: What they are and how they work

App developers are constantly releasing Apple Watch apps. Often, these are updated iPhone apps that include an Apple Watch app inside. Apple Watch apps are designed to give you the information you need on the smaller screen at a glance. Some show quick news headlines, while others act as remotes for streaming music or your Apple TV, and others are second screens for your iPhone apps. They’re essentially tiny widgets that help you use your iPhone to access features. 

Read moreBest Apple Watch apps

How to download apps on Apple Watch

Downloading apps to your Apple Watch is easy in practice, but you can do it a few different ways.

Here’s how to download apps from the App Store on your smartwatch:

1. Press the digital crown on your Apple Watch to bring up the home screen.

2. Tap App Store.

3. Tap Search to explore the apps.

4. Tap an app to learn more about it (just like you’d do in the App Store on Mac or iPhone).

5. Once you find an app you want, tap Get.

6. The Apple Watch will prompt you to double-click the digital crown to download and install.

You can also get Apple Watch apps via your iPhone. Here’s how:

1. Open the Watch app on your iPhone.

2. Tap the My Watch tab.

3. You can add apps under the section Available Apps. Once you find one you want, tap the app.

4. Tap install

How to delete Apple Watch apps


There are two ways to delete Apple Watch apps. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

Just as there are two ways to download an Apple Watch app, there are two ways to get rid of an app.

Delete an app with your Apple Watch

1. Press the digital crown on your Apple Watch to bring up the home screen. Once your home screen appears, note whether your apps are in grid view or list view.

2. Grid View: If the apps are in grid view, find the app you want to delete, and touch and hold until the app icons jiggle. Tap the X button to delete an app. 

3. List View: Swipe left on the app you want to get rid of and tap delete.

4. Press the digital crown to confirm and finish. 

Delete an app with your iPhone

1. Open the Watch app on your iPhone.

2. Tap the My Watch tab.

3. Under the Installed on Apple Watch section, choose the app you want to delete. 

4. Tap the app you want to delete.

5. Turn off Show App on Apple Watch

Can you delete preinstalled Apple Watch apps?

You’ve likely noticed a few built-in apps on your Watch (as well as your iPhone) like Music, Voice Memos and Contacts. But you don’t have to keep them on your watch if you don’t want them. Yes, you can delete these native apps from your Watch or iPhone.

1. Touch and hold the app you want to get rid of until it jiggles.

2. Tap the X button to delete.

3. Press the home button (or the digital crown if you’re doing it on your watch) to complete the deletion. 

Read more: 15 tips and tricks to help you master your Apple Watch


Yes, you can delete preinstalled Apple Watch apps. 

Angela Lang/CNET

What if I change my mind and want to reinstall an Apple Watch app?

Didn’t mean to delete that app? No problem. Here’s how to get it back:

1. Go to the App Store on your device.

2. Search the app.

3. Once you find the app, you should see a cloud icon with a little arrow inside it next to the app. Tap the cloud.

4. The app should be restored, and you can find it on your iPhone home screen or the Watch screen.

What are the best Apple Watch apps?

While you’ll find thousands of third-party Apple Watch apps from companies like Amazon and TripAdvisor in the App Store to download, some of the most useful ones are those apps already built into the Apple Watch, like News, Camera, Mindfulness and the ECG monitor. But the best ones for you, of course, depend on what you use the Watch for primarily. Check out our list of the best Apple Watch fitness apps here.

For more, you can also check out CNET’s list of best Apple Watch bands and Apple Watch deals.