How to Use Hand Gestures to Control Your Apple Watch. If you are on Apple WatchOS 9, Assistive Touch now includes quick actions that let you respond to Apple Watch alerts with hand gestures. Through this page, you will be able to get information on how to use hand gestures to control your Apple Watch.
With this Quick Action, users with upper body and limb differences can now do even more with a double-pinch gesture to respond to alerts on their Apple Watch, including answering or ending a phone call, taking a photo when the viewfinder and shutter button are showing in the camera app, pausing or playing media in the Now Playing app, and starting, pause, or resume a workout.
How to Use Hand Gestures to Control Your Apple Watch
You can also use a quick action to snooze an alarm or stop a timer. Well, Quick Actions can be useful to just about anybody. For example, if you’re holding something in your other hand and can’t touch the screen of your Apple Watch to answer or end a phone call, you can perform a double-pinch gesture with your watch hand to do exactly that.
You can decide for Quick Action to be available at all times in WatchOS 9. It is available only when Assistive Touch is off or enabled. You can also choose full appearance (a banner appears and the action button is highlighted) or minimal appearance (the action button is highlighted with no banner).
What are Hand Gestures on the Apple Watch?
Hand gestures on the Apple Watch allow users to perform actions like turning the digital crown or swiping up or down on their watch screen. Bring up the action menu using your hand gesture. The default gesture is a double clench.
How to Enable Quick Actions
To turn quick actions on or off, follow these steps.
- Open the Watch app on your iPhone.
- Tap Accessibility.
- Under “Motor,” tap Quick Actions.
- Choose from one of the following options: on, when Assistive Touch is enabled, and off. You can also choose their appearance to be full or minimal.
With Quick Actions on, when you see an alert on your Apple Watch, you will be prompted to perform a Quick Action. For example, if you have paused a workout, a prompt lets you know that you can double-pinch to resume it (tap index finger to thumb twice quickly).
If you want to practice performing Quick Action gestures, open Settings on your Apple Watch, then go to Accessibility > Quick Actions, and tap Try It Out.
How to control your Apple Watch with hand gestures
In that same menu that you use to toggle on hand gestures, you can review the navigation functions associated with each gesture. There are four gestures: pinch, double pinch, clench, and double clench. These are the preset functions:
- Pinch: Forward
- Double Pinch: Backward
- Clench: Tap
- Double Clench: Action Menu
You can choose to customize the gestures if you’d like, with the option to reset to default at any time. One can set a certain gesture to open the Apple Watch Control Center, activate Siri, or show the Best Apple Watch app in a menu. You can even assign a gesture to mimic a scrolling motion.
Well, you can also change the gesture assignments in the Assistive Touch menu directly on your Apple Watch. However, if you are in the market for a new smartwatch, we can help you choose the best Apple Watch model for you, and a shout out to the best Apple Watch deals available right now, Because who doesn’t love saving money?
Commonly Asked Questions
Can I control my Apple Watch with hand movements?
With the default actions, you can navigate your Apple Watch with these hand gestures: Move to the next item: Pinch (tap your pointer finger to your thumb) Move back one item: Double pinch (tap your pointer finger to your thumb twice quickly) Tap an item: Clench (close your hand into a fist).
How does the Apple Watch detect hand gestures?
These use built-in motion sensors inside the watch, including the gyroscope, accelerometer, optical heart rate sensor, and on-device machine learning to detect subtle differences in muscle movement and tendon activity.
Does the Apple Watch have an assistive touch?
Starting with WatchOS 8, Apple introduced a new accessibility feature called Assistive Touch. The cool thing about this feature is that it allows you to control the watch via gestures and arm movements. Meaning, now you don’t even need to touch the Apple Watch screen to use it.