How to enable Auto Unlock on Mac and Apple Watch

Apple Watch is not just useful for tracking the fitness or using Apple Pay, but if you also have a compatible Mac, you can use Auto Unlock feature. With Auto Unlock, you can pair your Apple Watch to your Mac; and then automatically unlock your MacBook just by sitting down in front of it without password requirement if your Apple Watch is already unlocked when you sit down. Here’s how to set up and use this great feature.

How to enable Auto Unlock on Mac and Apple Watch

Before proceeding with Auto Unlock, you need to make sure some things first:

  • Make sure both your Mac and Apple Watch are compatible, and that
  • You’ve already set up two-factor authentication for your iCloud account.
  • You are using the right Mac and Apple Watch. To use Auto Unlock, you’ll need:

A Mac manufactured in 2013 and later (it’s pity for 2012 Mac owners)

An Apple Watch Series 0,1, 2, 3, or 4

If you are using an Apple Watch Series 0, 1, or 2, it needs to be running on WatchOS 3 or later on your watch. In addition, you Mac also needs to be running MacOS Sierra version or higher.

If you are using an Apple Watch Series 3, there is a little change due to the W2 chip when your wearable needs to be running on WatchOS 4 version, and your Mac runs on MacOS High Sierra. The Apple Watch Series 4 is pre-installed WatchOS 5 and also requires MacOS High Sierra or higher.

Since Auto Unlock can be used to bypass the login password on your Mac, Apple wants your computer to be safe enough by enabling two-factor authentication on your iCloud account.

To enable two-factor authentication on your iPhone, it should be running on iOS 9 or later.

  • Make sure your Apple Watch and Mac are signed into the same iCloud account

To use Auto Unlock, your Apple Watch and Mac must be signed into the same iCloud account. So, make sure you’ve already signed in on both your devices with the same Apple ID.

  • Make sure your Mac and Watch are set a passcode

Many of you think that it’s unnecessary to use a passcode with your Apple Watch for the first setup time, but if you want to use Auto Unlock, you need to create one. You will also have to set up a login password on your MacBook.

  • Turn your Apple Watch on

If your Apple Watch isn’t already unlocked and is not on your wrist, you cannot connect it with your Mac. Only if it is being worn on your wrist and is unlocked, your Mac can register the device and you can enable Auto Unlock.

Also see: How To Fix Continuity Camera Not Working Between iOS 12 and macOS Mojave

Steps to enable Auto Unlock on your Mac

Once you are all set, enabling Auto Unlock is a breeze.

  • Click on Apple icon ()in the left corner of your Mac screen.
  • Choose System Preferences from the drop-down menu list.
  • Click Security & Privacy section
  • Select General.
  • Tick on Allow your Apple Watch to unlock your Mac checkbox.


Auto Unlock will then activate and it just takes a few seconds.

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