We have lost track of how many times the Find My app has helped us find lost items or warned us about items we left behind. From misplaced AirPods to lost iPhones and strange AirTag-enabled wallets, purses or bags, Find My apps have saved us a lot of stress and probably a lot of money too.

In this tutorial, we’ll show you how the three Apple Watch Find My apps work and what they can and can’t do on all types of Apple devices and accessories. (If you’re looking to update your Apple Watch, check out our guide to the lowest Apple Watch Series 8 prices to help you get the best deal).

What are “Find My” apps?

Your Apple Watch has three apps that use Apple’s Find My service: Find Devices, Find Items, and Find People. They all use Apple’s Find My network, which is extremely clever; Whenever your device or AirTag is within range of an Apple device, it sends an encrypted signal to Apple through the device’s Bluetooth connection. The other device does not see the signal; It simply sends it to Apple – and when you activate the Find My app, the app simply asks Apple ‘Hey, where’s that device?’.

Apps do several things when you locate a lost device. They tell you where it is or where it was last located, so you can see that location on a map. They enable you to play a sound to help you locate him if he’s nearby or to alert other people in the area. And you can use apps to alert you if you leave a particular item behind. That’s exactly why we have an AirTag in our bags.

01. View Finder options on your Apple Watch

(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

The Find apps on your Apple Watch are the intelligently named Find Devices, Find Items, and Find People apps, which share similar icon colors but have different images. We’ll start with People first, so let’s tap on that app icon.

02. Find a person


(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

To find a person, they have to share their location with you. Here we have two family members and, because we use Family Sharing, we can enable their location sharing in the Family Control Panel on our iPhone, iPad or Mac.

03. Select ‘Approve’ to share yourself


(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

The first time you use one of the Find apps on your watch, you’ll be asked if you want to use your location. You want to say yes to this request, because any direction-based information requires knowing where you are.

04. Use an app to see where they are

(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

We’ve blacked out the details here for privacy, but trust us: this screen shows the exact location of our number one baby on a map as well as the approximate house or flat number, street name and postcode.

05. Use an app to get directions

Get directions with

(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

If you want to find that person, scroll up until you see the directions icon (under Quick Contacts). This will provide proper information from the map telling you how far they are, how much time it will take and what the traffic is like.


(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

Find My works with AirTags too. Suppose, you can use AirTags on a music device. As you can see here we’re in the same spot as our guitar and guitar pedals. A big deal is fine, but what if you lose your car keys?


(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

Don’t worry – we’ve also got an AirTag on our key ring. Knowing the location isn’t really helpful here – just because we’re in the same building as our car keys doesn’t mean we know where they are. But Apple has a solution.

08. Use sound to help locate objects


(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

In both the Find Item and Find Device apps, you can play a sound to help you locate an item that’s within range but not visible — so you can get an AirTag on your Key to announce it. Find out where it is, or ping your iPhone.

09. Activate ‘Notify me when left behind’

Notification option on

(Image credit: Kerry Marshall)

If like us you have a habit of forgetting things, you can set the Notify When Left Behind toggle for different devices or people – so if you go out without your bag or keys, you’ll get a notification on our Apple Watch. Information will be received.

This content originally appeared in MacFormat. Subscribe to Magazines at MagazinesDirect,