"Your phone left behind" feature in WatchOS 8 beta

Or vice-versa. Also respiratory info, mindfulness features, etc.

I wonder what the distance is? That would be super-cool if the distance is configurable, or if it’s possible to geofence somehow.

I’m hoping it’s something other than “whatever distance Bluetooth reaches”.

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It’s almost certainly bluetooth based. The Apple Watch doesn’t have the U1 chip in it. Constantly running location services on the watch and phone would burn the battery down. That leaves bluetooth.

That said, it doesn’t necessarily have to be set to the maximum range of bluetooth. Apple can figure out how far apart two bluetooth devices are on a more granular level (they use this tech to limit how far away you can use your Watch to unlock a Mac or iPhone). I don’t know what the battery burden of that tech is through.

I bet they had the “your phone is out of range” component ready for watchOS 1 but it took them 8 versions to iron out the “and it doesn’t look like you’re just using the toilet” detection. Bet they almost had it for watchOS 6 or 7, too, but they had to add a some final “include toilet trips if on Starbucks WiFi” logic.

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Darn watches and their tiny batteries. :slight_smile: It’s also possible that they do a periodic ping rather than just a continuous scan. Even if it were only every few seconds, that would still be useful - although not nearly as cool as having it alert you the moment you’re out of range.

That all said, I would think a U1 could be included in a next-gen Watch, and used in preference to Bluetooth if it exists. Maybe that’s coming with the next cycle?

THAT’S what the handwashing feature was! They had to be able to distinguish between varieties of aqueous noises with precision before they could roll out the toilet detector. :smiley:

The U1 would make a ton of sense for the watch, not just for this, but also for enabling it to find AirTags, unlock cars and doors that use UWB tech, etc.

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Absolutely awesome feature, IF it works…
Would be a shame to be notified each time I leave the table to get a coffee…

I have 15 on my phone and iPad. I get this notification every time I leave my iPad in the car to go into a business or a park, but not when I leave it at a coffee shop table to go up to the counter. One time I left the iPad inside a business; the notification arrived shortly before I opened my car door and prompted me to run back to get it.

I never get the notification when leaving home or work. Bluetooth length seems like the right description of what’s happening. I haven’t run 15 on my watch, but I’m guessing it’s a similar system. Nice feature.


I hope it works a bit better than the airtags notifications, I usually get a notification that my wife’s keys are with me when I’ve already returned home.