My iPhone was lost and I want to pair my watch with my new iPhone. Everything I see says that unpairing the watch will erase it. The problem is I don't have a backup of the watch since it's a new phone.

Is there a way to backup the watch without erasing it?

I know that if I had a recent backup of my old phone and restored the new phone from it, it would have the watch backup as well, but in poor form my backups were too old from before I had the watch. Also even if I did have a recent phone backup it still wouldn't have the very latest data from the watch, and that's what I'd like to save.

There are some similar questions, but none answer my question. Apple watch still paired to an iPhone I no longer have Pair Apple Watch again without erasing

1 Answer 1


The watch backs up periodically, but you can’t easily get at the backups until you bring an unpaired watch to the phone containing the backups.

I don’t foresee this changing this fall 2019 but a cloud backup interface would be needed to do what you ask if the watch or another wearable was to stand without the iPhone to manage data and setup.

I’ve not seen any way to jailbreak a watch and repair it either which is what you’re looking to accomplish so until new information comes to light, you’re stuck with only one option.

  • Get an iPhone to recover whatever backup exists of the lost iPhone, then wipe the watch and repair. You certainly want to engage apple support in case they have any insight into how they plan to handle this situation or if we don’t know enough and there are other options.
  • Thanks. I don't see how it would require a cloud interface though. All it needs to be able to do is pair with the new phone and then backup.
    – T. M.
    Aug 30, 2019 at 16:42
  • @T.M. the cloud checks for activation lock and optionally updates iCloud enabled devices. It’s not core to the process but can help in some cases
    – bmike
    Aug 31, 2019 at 12:04
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    Apple support confirms your answer that there currently isn’t a way to do what I want. There isn’t any reason they couldn’t put pairing before erasing but currently there isn’t a way to do that.
    – T. M.
    Aug 31, 2019 at 15:35

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