How to unlock Mac with Apple Watch (2023)

How to unlock Mac with Apple Watch

Things to know:

  • Apple Watch should be passcode protected.
  • Mac and Apple Watch must be using the same Apple ID.
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth should be enabled on both Mac and Watch.
  • Two-factor authentication must be enabled for your iCloud account.

When you wish to avoid entering your password for security concerns or if your Mac’s Touch ID is not working, the Auto Unlock feature can be of great help. All you need to do is enable the Auto Unlock setting on your Mac beforehand. So, without further ado, let’s understand all the necessary steps required to unlock your Mac with your Apple Watch.

How to turn on Auto Unlock on Mac

The Auto Unlock feature is available on every Mac released after mid-2013. Further, you can follow the steps below, depending on your macOS, to activate the feature.

In macOS Ventura

  1. Click on the Apple logo in the menu bar.
  2. Click System Settings.

    Click System Settings in In macOS Ventura
  3. Scroll down and click Touch ID & Password.
  4. Under the Apple Watch section, toggle on the switch next to your Apple Watch’s name.
    You may not see this feature if your Apple Watch is not on the same Apple ID.

    Turn ON Auto Unlock feature In macOS Ventura

macOS Monterey or earlier

  1. Click Apple logo → System Preferences.

    Select System Preferences from Mac Manu Bar
  2. Go to Security & Privacy.

    Click on Security and Privacy in Mac System Preferences
  3. Click on the General tab.
  4. Check the box next to Use your Apple Watch to unlock apps and your Mac.

    Tick the Box to Use your Apple Watch to unlock apps and your Mac
  5. Enter your Mac’s password to confirm.

How to use Apple Watch to unlock your Mac

After you enable Auto Unlock on your Mac, you’ll be able to unlock your device the moment you bring your Apple Watch physically closer. So, whenever necessary, just drag your Watch closer, and you’re good to go.

How it looks on Mac

Unlock MacBook with Apple Watch

Please note that your Mac will not recognize you and will not auto-unlock if the Apple Watch is not on your wrist and locked.

Also, since the feature is available only on watchOS 7 or later, I’d recommend updating your watchOS to the latest version.


Q. How can I unlock my iPhone with my Apple Watch?

To learn how to unlock your iPhone with Apple Watch, you can refer to our article and follow the given steps.

Q. How close does Apple Watch have to be to unlock Mac?

Though no official comment has been issued by Apple, when I attempted unlocking my Mac with my Apple Watch, I was able to accomplish the operation efficiently from a maximum distance of 48 inches, or 1.22 meters.

Open sesame…

As you can see, unlocking your Mac with Apple Watch is a straightforward procedure. You just need to follow the above-mentioned steps. However, if you face trouble while unlocking your Mac, you can check our article on Apple Watch not unlocking your Mac.

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