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My Apple Watch still loses its mind when I switch from Wi-Fi to cellular

Published Mar 27th, 2023 7:41PM EDT
Apple Watch Series 8 Side
Image: Christian de Looper for BGR

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The news is slow today, so here’s a quick rant about an issue that Apple has still not figured out with the Apple Watch — how to make a smooth transition from Wi-Fi to cellular.

I love running, but I hate running in the winter. I could probably solve this if I invested in the proper clothing to handle a winter run, but I’d honestly rather hit the gym in the winter months than deal with the cold wind blasting my face. That weak stance is the reason that I didn’t get a chance to use my Apple Watch Ultra on a run until today, and like my Apple Watches before it, my Ultra crapped out when it tried to switch from Wi-Fi to cellular.

Like almost anyone, I love to listen to music, podcasts, and audiobooks when I run. For years, I dealt with the limited storage of the Apple Watch and had to make very selective choices of what audio I wanted access to when I was out. A few years ago, I finally made the jump to a cellular Apple Watch, and while it unlocked the ability to stream all of my music, podcasts, and audiobooks without the need for an anticipatory download, it just won’t let me!

Apple Watch SE Right
Apple Watch SE lacks EKG and Blood Oxygen features. Image source: Christian de Looper for BGR

I would say that about half the times I walk out my front door and try to play some audio for my run, it will stop playing within a minute of my run starting. I know what’s happening — my watch is getting outside the range of my Wi-Fi and trying to switch over to cellular to continue streaming, but it fails to do it — all of the time. When the issue occurs, I can’t even get it to work without restarting my watch.

I’ve tried skipping to a different song, closing and restarting audio apps, and toggling cellular off/on. Nothing has worked. I always have to completely restart the watch — every freaking time. I’ve had this issue from the Apple Watch Series 6 through the Apple Watch Ultra. It’s like a poltergeist that is following me from house to house.

I don’t know what the issue is, but I need Apple to fix this one. It’s killing my experience since half of my runs start with me cursing out and fighting with my watch to do the thing that they (and T-Mobile) are charging me for. You pay a decent premium for a cellular model and then pay monthly for the data access, so cellular crapping out on the regular for the few use cases people use it for is incredibly frustrating.

Anyway, I’m going to go on a run. I’m restarting my watch before I start this time. Hopefully, I’m getting ahead of the issue this time and can enjoy my playlist of music from Apple’s September 2022 event.

Joe Wituschek Tech News Contributor

Joe Wituschek is a Tech News Contributor for BGR.

With expertise in tech that spans over 10 years, Joe covers the technology industry's breaking news, opinion pieces and reviews.

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