As an enthusiast of different types of wearable technology and an avid smartwatch user, one question that has always piqued my interest is just how far my smartwatch can be from my phone and still remain connected.
Whether I’m out for a run, running errands around town, or just relaxing at home, the convenience of being able to receive notifications, track my fitness goals, and control my music all from my wrist is one of the things I love most about my smartwatch.
But as much as I rely on my smartwatch, I’ve always wondered just how much freedom I have to move around without losing that connection to my phone.
So, I decided to take matters into my own hands and do some research to find out how far can a smartwatch be from your phone and still be connected.
If your smartwatch only has a Bluetooth connectivity option, it must be within 30 feet (9 meters) of your phone to remain connected. However, if your smartwatch has built-in cellular connectivity (i.e. LTE/4G), you can access all features even if you leave your phone at home.
But apart from the connectivity range, I’ve often come across many questions regarding smartwatch connectivity.
In this post, I’ve answered several questions that people have frequently asked about smartwatches and their connectivity to a phone.
So, if you’re planning to buy a smartwatch and wondering whether you’ve to carry your phone with you or can leave it at home and still use a smartwatch, keep reading to find the answer.
In the end, I have even revealed exactly what can you do with a smartwatch if you leave your phone at home.
How Far Can Smartwatch Be From Phone?
In general, smartwatches must be within 30 feet radius or 9 meters from your phone to stay connected. This is because smartwatches rely on Bluetooth technology to connect to your phone, and Bluetooth has a range of only about 30 feet.
This means that your smartwatch should be able to stay connected to your phone as long as you’re within this range.
I personally conducted a series of tests using my new Apple Watch Series 8 and iPhone 13.
Here’s exactly what I did — I started by walking away from my phone with my watch on my wrist, checking the connection every few steps to see when it would drop out.
I continued this process until the watch lost its connection to the phone, and then measured the distance between the two devices.
In my tests, I was able to maintain a connection between my phone and watch up to a distance of approximately 100 feet (30-31 meters) in an open outdoor environment with no physical barriers.
However, when I went indoors, the range was reduced to about 60 feet (18 meters) due to walls and other obstructions.
Is It Possible To Extend The Bluetooth Range From Phone To Watch?
Unfortunately, it is not possible to extend the Bluetooth range from phone to watch because its range is limited to 30 feet. That means if you go farther than 30 feet away from your phone, your smartwatch will lose its connection.
However, there are a few workarounds to extend the Bluetooth range between your smartwatch and your phone.
One way is using a Bluetooth extender device, which can increase the range up to 100 feet or even more, depending on the model you use.
Another way to extend the Bluetooth range is using a Wi-Fi network to connect your smartwatch and your phone, which can increase the Bluetooth range even further.
Do I Have to Carry My Phone with a Smartwatch?
If your smartwatch only has Bluetooth, you’ll have to carry your phone. Otherwise, you may not be able to use all features on your smartwatch. However, if your smartwatch has cellular connectivity, you can leave your phone behind and still receive notifications, send text messages, and make & answer phone calls.
Unfortunately, not all smartwatches come equipped with cellular connectivity, so make sure to check before purchasing one for yourself.
One more thing — if you buy a smartwatch with cellular connectivity, you’ll need to purchase a separate data plan for your watch for it to be able to function independently.
If you’re someone who wants to leave your phone behind on a frequent basis and still stay connected on the go, buying a separate data plan for your smartwatch is definitely a worthwhile investment.
Will My Smartwatch Work If I Leave My Phone at Home?
Yes, your smartwatch will work even if you leave your phone at home. However, it will be able to perform only basic functions like checking the time, playing offline music, counting your steps, and even using navigation if it’s a GPS-enabled smartwatch.
On the other hand, if your smartwatch has cellular connectivity, you can use all features on your smartwatch even if you leave your phone at home.
So, if your goal is to stay connected even when you don’t always have your phone with you, it’s best to invest in a smartwatch with cellular connectivity.
What Can You Do On a Smartwatch If Your Phone is At Home?
Like I just said earlier, there are still plenty of things you can do with a smartwatch such as track your steps, monitor your heart rate, and use other fitness features even when your phone is at home.
And if your smartwatch supports cellular connectivity, you can perform almost all functions like sending text messages, making phone calls, listening to Spotify, and so on.
But are smartwatches worth it? — In my opinion, if you’re considering buying a smartwatch in 2023, you should definitely go with a standalone smartwatch if your budget allows it.
Standalone smartwatches come with built-in cellular connectivity and are better in almost every aspect compared to other types of smartwatches.
The best part? — Standalone smartwatches can last longer than 3 years if you take proper care of it, whereas most smartwatches last between 1-3 years only.
Smartwatches and other wearable devices can be incredibly useful tools for staying connected on the go.
But it’s important to consider the role technology plays in our lives and how it affects our ability to be present and engage with the world around us.
While smartwatches are an incredibly useful tool to stay connected on the go, track fitness goals, and monitor our health, they shouldn’t become a crutch that we rely on for every aspect of our lives.