Apple Watch Troubleshooting

Now that you’ve Installed the Apple Watch Companion App and linked up Apple Health, you should be great to go on any kind of adventure with your Fitdigits app.

However, sometimes trouble does arise, even on the best of adventures. What follows are different issues and how to address them if you do come across them. 

No Heart Rate Connected in the app

  1. Make sure that Apple Health is linked and all share permissions granted. You might even disable and re-enable the linking just to be sure. 
  2. Make sure you have the Apple Watch paired and selected as your active heart rate monitor on your app on the iPhone. 
  3. Make sure you aren’t in Apple Watch Stand Alone mode if you want to view heart rate on your iPhone. 
  4. Make sure you have the Fitdigits Apple Watch Companion App installed
  5. Make sure Workout Power Saving Mode is turned OFF:
    1. Open the Apple “Watch” app
    2. Tap General
    3. Scroll down, make sure Workout Power Saving Mode is turned OFF

Apple Watch Screen Cut Off

Apple Watch Cut Off

If you see your Apple Watch and the watch face looks like it has been cut off at the top, our apologies. We’ve researched it quite a bit and have only found others who experience the same with their apps. It is an easily reproducible situation – just force close watch app, fire up a workout from the phone (which will have the phone start the watch app fresh) and you have a screen cut off at the top.

General consensus currently attributes this to a bug in the WatchOS we hope they will fix soon, unfortunately there is no solution yet but there is a fix:

  1. Hard Close / Force Close the Apple Watch application by holding the power button and then holding in the crown.
  2. Open the watch app / start a workout from the watch, before trying to start a workout from phone > watch.
  3. Once you see the Cancel button on the watch home screen, you should be good. You can then cancel on the watch if you want and use phone or watch.

Apple Watch Stand Alone Issues

If your app is stopping after a very brief period of time, or failing to transfer workouts on a regular basis, perform these steps on the watch:

Watch App Re-Installing
  1. Slide up the widget tray, and enable airplane mode.
  2. Wait a moment, then disable airplane mode
  3. Close the drawer and open the app list.
  4. If iCardio starts reinstalling for no reason, then the installation is bad. In that case see Re-Install the Apple Watch Companion App below. You can tell it is re-installing if it looks like it is reloading.

If your app is telling you that the watch is currently in Stand Alone mode, and won’t launch an activity on the phone, there is a flag that somehow wasn’t cleared on the watch / phone. To clear the flag:

  1. Open the Apple Watch companion app
  2. Tap the green icons on the home screen in the lower right until only the green watch shows, putting it in stand alone mode.
  3. Tap the icon on the home screen to start an activity, then tap Cancel.
  4. Tap the green icon in the lower right to put it back in tethered mode. You should be good to go from here.

Apple Watch / iPhone Communication Issues

If you are having trouble getting an activity to start on your iPhone when starting from your Apple Watch, or from the Watch from the iPhone, the easiest and most basic thing is to try launching an activity from the other device and then tapping Cancel. 

  1. Open the iPhone app
  2. Tap the Quickstart play icon
  3. Tap Cancel
  4. Tap Quickstart play icon again

Simply tapping play / cancel a time or so on the watch and phone has been shown very effecting in resetting communicating after loss of connection. 

Apple Watch Connection Troubleshooting

If you don’t see a Cancel button show on the watch screen under the workout type, you may need to Hard Close the watch app. 

Hard Close the Watch App

  1. Make sure the app you want to hard close is the one running in the foreground.
  2. Push and hold the bottom button on the right of the watch until the power off screen appears.
  3. Push and hold the digital crown button. You will see it go back to the main apps screen, that hard closes the watch app.

Ping the Phone from the Watch

  1. Go to the home screen on the watch (not the main apps, but the main watch face)
  2. 2. Swipe up from the bottom bezel to get the Watch equivalent of the phone controls
  3. The Ping phone is the lower left button with the phone icon. Tap that and it will ping on the phone (a good way to find your phone too!)

Hard Close the iPhone App

Still having trouble?  Hard close the app on the phone and re-open 

Reboot the Watch and iPhone

Sometimes everything just needs a good reboot to reset all bluetooth settings and other communication options. 

  1. Watch: Push and hold the bottom button on the right of the watch until the power off screen appears. Slide the power off indicator. Hold the bottom button on the watch to turn the Watch backk on. 
  2. iPhone: See here on how to reboot the different iPhone devices

Re-Install the Apple Watch Companion App

  1.  Open the Apple “Watch” app
  2. Scroll down to the Apps section and tap on your app name (iCardio, iBiker, iRunner)
  3. Turn the Show on Apple Watch switch to off, it will uninstall (wait…).
  4. Once uninstalled, tap it on to install it again.
  5. If it doesn’t show, see Troubleshooting Installing the Companion App
iCardio showing on Apple Watch App
Installing, or re-installing, the Apple Watch extension

Apple Watch 

Installing the Companion App

Apple Watch Setup 

Running a Stand Alone Apple Watch Session

Optimize Heart Rate from the Apple Watch



Installing the Apple Watch Companion App

Once you’ve got the main Fitdigits app installed, you need to install the Apple Watch companion app onto your Apple Watch.

Apple Watch AppFor some people who have their Apple Watch installed and have set the Watch app on their device to “Automatic App Install”, there is nothing more to do. However, if your settings do not allow automatic installation, you must first open the Watch app on your phone, then scroll down until you see the app name (iCardio, iBiker, iRunner or iWalker depending on your version), and tap “Install” next to it.

Install Apple Watch Companion Apps

While you are in the Watch app, also make sure that the “Workout Power Saving Mode” is turned Off.

  1. Open the Apple “Watch” app
  2. Tap General
  3. Scroll down, make sure Workout Power Saving Mode is turned OFF

Don’t See Your App in the Watch App like above?

If you do not see your App listed in the Watch list screen above, please reboot your iOS device, it should show up then.

Sometimes on install, with any watch companion app, the device doesn’t pick up the availability.


More on Apple Watch:

Apple Watch Setup

Running a Stand Alone Apple Watch Session

Optimize Apple Watch Heart Rate Readings


Apple Watch Setup & Notes

Getting started tracking heart rate and activities with the Apple Watch and Fitdigits apps is fast, easy, and flexible. After you’ve got the Apple Watch Companion Apps installed and active, and linked up Apple Health, you should be good to go and start tracking your adventures! We offer 3 modes: 

  • iPhone / Watch Companion Mode: A remote to the phone, you can run, pause, and stop activities, get heart rate from the watch, view in-workout metrics, and more. This is the standard mode, when both green icons – watch and phone, show on the watch home screen. 
  • Watch Stand Alone Mode: Run your activities without the iPhone around, and still have them safely recorded to the cloud and your Fitdigits account. When there is only one green watch icon on the watch home screen, you are in Stand Alone mode. Easy, lightweight – Freedom.
  • Heart Rate Only Mode: this will show your current heart rate on the watch, and can be used in our app with the phone to track heart rate within an activity, or simply use it to see your heart rate.
    • Tap the gear icon on the watch app home screen
    • Tap the button with the beating heart and <3 Only.

( Note that heart rate monitoring takes up a bit of battery, so you probably don’t want it running endlessly in the background. To cancel the readings in HR Only mode, force-touch to cancel the HR readings. If you have connected it in this mode with the iPhone app in an activity, ending the activity will end the HR readings. )

Current Requirements:

  1. An Apple Watch must be paired with your Apple iPhone.
  2. The Apple Watch must be running WatchOS 5.0 or higher. Phone must be on iOS 12+.
  3. While doing an activity in iPhone / Watch mode, the iPhone must be in the proximity (bluetooth) with the Watch.
  4. You must have all appropriate Apple Health permissions 
  5. You must have an upgrade or membership for the account to use Heart Rate from the Watch.
  6. For heart rate monitoring you must also have Workout Power Saving Mode disabled.

Getting Started with the Apple Watch

  1. Download the Fitdigits app of your choice
  2. On initial registration, link / enable Steps and overall Apple Health partner sharing (which can also be done later through Menu > Partners > Apple Health)
  3. Install the Apple Watch Companion App if not automatically installed
  4. Open the app, tap Menu > Sensors and turn ON the Apple Watch option for Heart Rate Monitors (Upgrade required)

Using the Watch to Track Activities

Important: When using the watch when paired with your iPhone, it is best to make sure the watch app is awake and active in the foreground before starting any kind of communications. Simply raise your wrist and open the app so it is in the foreground.

Tracking an Activity: 

  1. Open the watch or iPhone app. Check to see what icons are green on the main screen.
    1. If is has just the watch icon it is in Stand Alone mode, so references below to the iPhone will not apply.
    2. If you’ve recently changed workout favorites, interval settings or heart rate zones, tap the gear icon on the watch and tap Sync to bring down the changes from the iPhone. 
  2. On the watch or iPhone, swipe to the activity you want to track.
  3. Tap the Workout icon on the watch or the Play icon on the iPhone to begin tracking.
  4. Swipe up or down to show different metrics and screens. 
  5. Swipe down repeatedly or do a Force Tap on any screen to bring up the Pause / End Activity options. 

Tips for a Better Apple Watch Tracking Experience

Apple Watch General Settings

Extend the time the screen shows: For us, we found changing the settings on the watch from a 15 second time-out for the display to a 70 second time-out for the display made for a much better watch experience. You can do this in the Apple’s Watch app, under Settings > General.

Improve Heart Rate Readings: See more on how to get the most of your heart rate readings on our Apple Watch Optimization article.

3rd Party Heart Rate Monitors & Apple Watch

Pairing Scenario
Pair 3rd Party HRM with watch – start from WatchWatch will pull HR from 3rd party HRM, pairing automatically *
Pair 3rd Party HRM with watch – start from iPhoneWatch will pull HR from 3rd party HRM, pairing automatically*
Pair 3rd Party HRM with phone – start with WatchWorkout will fire up, and pull HR from the 3rd party HRM*
Pair 3rd Party HRM with phone – start with iPhonePhone workout will fire up (not watch), and phone will pull HR from 3rd party HRM*
Pair 3rd Party HRM with Watch – start a Watch Stand Alone Watch pulls from 3rd party hrm* **

* Note: you can see you have bpm on the watch, but if you tilt the watch up you don’t see the green light on, indicating the Watch HRM is not active

** Note also if your 3rd party HRM dies the Watch should fire up the HRM on your Wrist

More on Apple Watch:

Running a Stand Alone Apple Watch Session

Optimize Apple Watch Heart Rate Readings