How to store, listen to, and remove music from your Apple Watch

You can keep one playlist on your Apple Watch at a time. Sync the playlist from your iPhone, then listen to your songs using Bluetooth headphones.

Make a playlist

To make a new playlist, follow these steps:
1. On your iPhone, go to the Music app and tap Playlists > New Playlist.
2. Name your playlist and tap Save.
3. Tap either Songs or Artists to search for music to add to your playlist.
4. When you find a song you’d like to add, tap (+).
5. When you’re finished, tap Done.

If you want to edit a saved playlist:
1. Open the Music app on your iPhone and tap Playlists.
2. Pick a playlist by tapping it. Then tap edit.
3. To delete songs, tap (-) > Remove. Tap Done when you’re finished. To add songs, tap (+). Then find music by tapping Songs, Artists, or Albums. Tap (+) to add songs to your playlist. Tap Done when you’re finished.

Sync your playlist

1. Connect your Apple Watch to its Apple Magnetic Charging Cable.
2. On your iPhone, go to Settings > Bluetooth and make sure Bluetooth is turned on.
3. Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.
4. Go to Music > Synced Playlist to see your iPhone playlists.
5. Tap the playlist you want to sync to your Apple Watch.
6. When a message next to your playlist says Sync Pending, your playlist will begin syncing from your iPhone to your Apple Watch.
7. Wait until the sync is finished before using your Apple Watch. To see the sync progress, open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and tap Music.

Find the playlist on your Apple Watch

Before you can find the synced playlist on your Apple Watch, you’ll need to connect to Bluetooth headphones:
1. Put your Bluetooth headphones in pairing mode using the instructions that came with them. You might need to enter a passkey or PIN (Personal Identification Number).
2. On your Apple Watch, go to Settings > Bluetooth. Your Apple Watch will search for nearby Bluetooth devices.
3. Choose your Bluetooth headphones and enter a passkey or PIN if asked.

After you’ve connected your Bluetooth headphones, you can find the playlist on your Apple Watch: Force Press the Music app on your Apple Watch. Then tap Source > Apple Watch to see your playlist.

MacDailyNews Take: For our Bluetooth headphones, we went with the JayBird BlueBuds X Sport Bluetooth Headphones in Midnight Black ($124.99). So far, they work perfectly and they sound just fine during runs and while working out (better than many wired headphones we’ve tested).

Remove a playlist from Apple Watch

Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and tap Music > Synced Playlist > None. Put your Apple Watch on its charger and your playlist will be removed.

Note: Your Apple Watch playlist is limited to 1 GB by default. In the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, you can change this setting to 2 GB, 500 MB, or 100 MB. If you prefer to limit by song number, you can limit your playlist to 15, 50, 125, or 250 songs.


  1. Am I understanding this correctly? It sounds like the playlist and corresponding MP3 files have to already exist in your iPhone before it can exist in the Apple Watch.

    If so, it’s a stupid waste of storage space…unless it can be removed from the iPhone but still left on the Watch?

    Hopefully they’ll fix it in later iterations so that you don’t have to waste space having the same playlist on both devices.

      1. I think the point he’s making is that the playlist has to be first on your iPhone before it can be placed on your Apple Watch. It may be wasting space on the iPhone, not the Apple Watch.

        Suppose you don’t run with your iPhone and want to just use your Apple Watch. You have to have the playlist on your iPhone first, even though you may never listen to that playlist on your iPhone.

        It is a shame you can’t just pull it down directly from iTunes Match.

        1. True, it may be wasting space on the iPhone. But if you think about it, it’s easier to create a playlist (select and add songs from the different albums) on the iPhone rather than doing that on the  Watch.

          What annoys me is the amount of time it takes to sync the playlist to the  Watch! For 50 songs, it’s taking about 20 mins! 250 songs anyone?!?!

          1. The most efficient way this could’ve been done is for the iTunes Match library to transfer over to the Apple Watch. From there, the Apple Watch should download or stream as needed. It would’ve been faster and possibly saved space on the iPhone (depending on usage).

            However, this would involve autonomous functionality which Apple hasn’t enabled yet.

    1. Looks like they would have to be downloaded and installed in the WATCH synch playlist. The Apple Podcast app is not yet relating to the WATCH. ie no WATCH component in the Podcast app yet.👀😱😨

  2. I was able to sync the beginning of a playlist bigger than 2GB on my iPhone. The synching just stops when the 2GB WATCH limit is reached.😃⌚️. Next I’ll go into my iPhone and split the list into 2GB pieces so I can delete the first 320 song part and synch the second part later.😎

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