Unable To Update Apple Watch To watchOS 8? (Fixed!)

unable to update to watchOS 8

Unable to update to watchOS 8

Are you unable to update Apple Watch to watchOS 8? Is the update not showing up although you’ve updated the paired iPhone to the latest iOS 15 release? You’re prompted with the ‘To update the software on your Apple Watch, you first need to update the software on your iPhone’ error?

Unable To Update Apple Watch Issue

This problem has been signaled to us by Miriam:

“I’m not able to update to watchos 8! Please help!! iPhone says that I need to update iOS first. But I already did it.”

Although we couldn’t replicate it, I’ve found similar reports on Reddit:

“Can’t update to watchOS 8 despite being on 15.0.1.”

How To Fix Unable To Update Apple Watch To watchOS 8

1. Force Restart iPhone And Apple Watch

First you should try to reboot both devices. A fresh start could clear minor glitches that might prevent the Apple Watch from retrieving the watchOS 8 update.

How to: Use the force restart combos for iPhone and Apple Watch.

2. Update From Your Wrist

how to update to watchOS 8 from Watch

  • On Apple Watch, tap the Digital Crown and open Settings.
  • Go for General -> Software Update. Does it work?

Update: If you’re getting the ‘unable to check for update’ error or ‘an error occurred while checking for a software update’, move on to the next step.

3. Reinstall Watch App

how to delete Watch app from iPhone
This takes a bit longer but it should fix the watchOS 8 update not showing up issue:

  • 1. Unpair Apple Watch from iPhone: Watch (app) -> All Watches (top of My Watch tab) -> ‘i’ icon (next to AW name) -> Unpair Apple Watch.
  • 2. Delete the Watch app from iPhone Remove app completely, not just from the Home Screen. Long-press on its icon and tap Delete App.
  • 3. Force Restart iPhone.
  • 4. Reinstall Watch app from App Store (direct link).
  • 5. Re-Pair Apple Watch to iPhone.
  • 6. Update to watchOS 8: in Watch -> General -> Software Update.

Have you managed to fix Apple Watch not able o update to watchOS 8? Did the tips provided in this article help out? Do you have a better solution? Use the comments section and share your feedback.

Related: Other common watchOS 8 problems are:
Apple Watch time not updating in real time in Always On mode.
Activity Rings disappearing from Watch Face.
Dismiss message notification button not working as expected.