When the Apple Watch first launched we were excited about the possibilities Apple's wearable had to offer, and following the release of the lovely Series 5 model, the platform seems to have more potential than ever.

A raft of fine apps have been released for the Apple Watch, and matters further improved with the successive updates to watchOS, which among other improvements made Apple Watch apps more independent from their accompanying iPhone - although at present you still need to have the app on your iPhone to run it on the watch.

Great apps are constantly being released for the Apple Watch; the hardest thing is deciding which apps to download. Finding the third-party apps that are right for you is a vital way to get the most out of your watch, so jump in as we rattle through our hall of fame: the 29 best apps for Apple Watch.

Oh, and quite a few of them are free. Did we mention that?


'Less is more' when it comes to wearable apps, and this stripped-back version of 1Password's mighty iPhone app is a good example. Instead of trying to replicate the entire password-management feature set, it just covers login keys for two-factor authentication - simple but handy.

FREE with IAPs | Download 1Password

Best Apple Watch apps: 1Password


Apple didn't include a calculator on the Apple Watch, assuming that people's fingers would be too pudgy to perform calculations. How wrong they were. Calcbot deftly steps in to fill a calculator-shaped gap on the Apple Watch. If you upgrade to the Pro version you can get specialised assistance when working out tips.

FREE | Download Calcbot

Best Apple Watch apps: Calcbot

Camera Plus

Camera Plus is one of the most popular third-party camera apps for iOS, and gives you a lot more control over your photography than what's currently available in the stock camera app.

The Apple Watch support brings with it some great features, such as photo & video capturing with a live preview as well as an instant preview after capture to make sure it was exactly what you wanted. You can also swap between the front or back camera and set a timer - all from your wrist.

Although you can also use your Apple Watch as a viewfinder for the stock camera app, this brings a lot more functionality within one single app and we're looking forward to what Camera Plus are planning for the Apple Watch in the future.

99p/99c | Download Camera Plus

Best Apple Watch apps: Camera Plus


The trademark CARROT sense of humour (see the firm's weather app, next) is much in evidence in its fitness app, whose quick-start screen invites you to partake in "7 minutes of hell".

Motivation is a personal thing, but many people will find that this app's blend of stick (insults) and, er, carrot ("cat facts" and other rewards) is effective.

£4.99/$4.99 | Download CARROT Fit

Best Apple Watch apps: CARROT Fit

CARROT Weather

The Apple Watch CARROT app makes heavy use of colour instead of graphics to tell you about the weather for the next hour, which creates a simple but informative UI. For example, the text will be blue if it's raining/going to start raining soon, or yellow if it's sunny.

£4.99/$4.99 (Plus IAP for full functionality) | Download CARROT Weather

Best Apple Watch apps: CARROT Weather


Citymapper is no doubt one of the best public transport apps available for iOS and Android - if it's supported in your city (London and Manchester so far in the UK). The iOS app doesn't disappoint and neither does the Apple Watch companion. The app uses your location to provide step-by-step instructions that enable you to navigate your way around, using public transport.

It gives you in-depth knowledge about departures from all forms of public transport, and even taps you on the wrist to let you know when you've reached your stop.

FREE | Download Citymapper

Best Apple Watch apps: Citymapper

Dark Sky

Want to take the dog out for a walk but not too sure if it's going to rain? Just open up the Dark Sky app on your Apple Watch and it'll let you know if it's going to rain or snow in your location, up to an hour in advance. Alternatively, if it's going to rain in your location, you'll get a tap on the wrist and a notification displayed on your Apple Watch.

You can also see a 24-hour timeline of weather conditions for today, tomorrow and even the next day, and you'll get your own Dark Sky complication to add to your Watch face too.

£3.99/$3.99 | Download Dark Sky

Best Apple Watch apps: Dark Sky


Evernote is a cracking app for the iPhone and a much more powerful note-taking tool than Apple's Notes - which is missing from the Apple Watch anyway, so there's never been a better time to switch. You can read all your most recent notes, and dictate new ones directly from your Apple Watch.

FREE | Download Evernote

Best Apple Watch apps: Evernote


The best iOS calendar app is an excellent choice on Apple Watch too. If you're serious about scheduling, you need to give this a try.

£4.99/$4.99 | Download Fantastical

Best Apple Watch apps: Fantastical

Green Kitchen

The Green Kitchen app allows quick and easy access to dozens of healthy and organic vegetarian recipes, straight from your Apple Watch. Once you've found a recipe you like, it'll be displayed on your iPhone ready for you to use.

If there's a step to your meal that requires a timer, a simple tap on your iPhone will start a timer on your Apple Watch. When the timer hits zero, you'll get a notification through to your Apple Watch informing you. Pretty handy, eh?

£3.99/$3.99 | Download Green Kitchen

Best Apple Watch apps: Green Kitchen


The IFTTT app gives you access to all your favourite services on your Apple Watch in the form of applets for services including Twitter, Instagram, and Gmail, as well as Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Nest, Philips Hue and more.

With the app you will be able to control everything around you with your voice - including using Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

FREE | Download IFTTT

Best Apple Watch apps: IFTTT


Instagram was briefly available for the Apple Watch, but it was discontinued due to sluggish performance and a lack of features compared to the iOS and Android app. But if you're convinced that the best way to enjoy Instagram is on the small screen, Lens is a great unofficial alternative that offers way more functionality than the official app ever did, allowing you to view Stories, leave comments on posts and more. 

FREE | Download Lens


We love the iTranslate app. With it you can speak a sentence in English and have it quickly converted into another language. It's ideal if you're learning a language, of course, but it's also very handy if you just happen to be abroad and want a quick way to figure out how to say something. All together now, "Un croissant, s'il vous plait!"

FREE (with IAPs) | Download iTranslate

Best Apple Watch apps: iTranslate


Health and fitness play a key part of the Apple Watch experience, but running in the gym is only half the story: the other, possibly more important, half is watching what you eat. Lifesum is a neat app that logs your meals. With the Apple Watch, you can quickly add items you regularly eat or generic calorie counts of meals.

We found Lifesum to be a great way to keep track of calorie counts, and a seamless way to keep tabs on what you are eating.

FREE | Download Lifesum

Best Apple Watch apps: Lifesum

Microsoft Translator

If you're planning a holiday abroad or travel a lot for work, chances are you're going to come in contact with another language. Typically, you'd bring a translation book with you. However, if you have an Apple Watch, you just need to download the Microsoft Translator app.

The app lets you speak to get translations from more than 50 languages, including French, Spanish, Italian and Dutch. It's free to download and use, and should get better the more you use it.

FREE | Download Microsoft Translator

Best Apple Watch apps: Microsoft Translator


This simple, 'does what it says on the tin' offering lets you create, customise and label multiple timers to an extent not possible using the native app. If your memory is anything like ours, this will be seriously handy.

FREE | Download MultiTimer

Best Apple Watch apps: MultiTimer

PayByPhone Parking

Returning to your car with a fine on the windshield after forgetting that you'd only bought a ticket for one hour is no doubt one of the biggest "first world problems". The PayByPhone Parking app for the Apple Watch aims to change that by using the app to pay for a ticket and check on the time remaining.

Not good enough yet? You'll also be notified 10 minutes before the ticket expires, where you'll then be faced with a decision of whether to rush back to your car or add more time, directly from your wrist.

FREE | Download PayByPhone Parking

Best Apple Watch apps: PayByPhone Parking


Prone to procrastinating or getting bored through the day? Then it could come down to the fact that your brain isn't getting enough exercise.

Yeah, apparently that's a thing, and Peak wants to help. Built by leading psychologists and neuroscientists, the app offers three brain training games that'll keep your brain active.

They've been created to put your memory, focus and problem-solving skills to the test. But while these games serve to keep your mind in full working order, they're still engaging and fun to play.

FREE | Download Peak

Best Apple Watch apps: Peak

Adidas Running App (Formerly Runtastic)

The Apple Watch presents a great way to get the most out of the Adidas Running app, formerly known as Runtastic. All you need to do is take your iPhone with you on a run and the app will display all the information you need on your wrist.

It displays speed, distance, duration, pace and how many calories you've burned on your wrist, where it's convenient to check without having to slow down and get your phone out of your pocket.

FREE | Download Adidas Running App


"Ah, I know that song but I can't remember what it's called." We've all been there, and Shazam wants to make it a thing of the past. The Apple Watch app uses your iPhone to listen to what music is playing and display the result on your wrist.

The Apple Watch displays the name of the song and artist as well as lyrics that automatically advance in time with the music. This means you'll have a portable karaoke display on your wrist at all times!

Now that Apple's bought Shazam we imagine it will be integrated into Siri and the Apple Watch even more in the future.

FREE | Download Shazam

Best Apple Watch apps: Shazam

Sky Guide

Sky Guide is an example of one of the more unique apps available on the Apple Watch, which gives you an idea about some of the not-so-obvious uses of the Watch. Sky Guide allows you to see a calendar of upcoming astronomical events (full moon, meteor showers and so on) and can send you a notification alerting you of an event happening in the skies at your current location.

It'll also notify you when the International Space Station is due to fly over your location and lets you tweet its astronauts!

It caters to amateur stargazers; displaying images of constellations that are visible in your location, giving you a greater insight about what you're looking at and enabling you to stargaze more accurately.

£2.99/$2.99 | Download Sky Guide

Best Apple Watch apps: Sky Guide


There are so many Apple Watch apps out there to help you monitor and hack your personal health, and sleep is one of the main focus areas. If you suffer from sleep deprivation or would just like to learn more about how you sleep, Sleep++ is an app worth downloading. While it can't match up to health bands from companies like Fitbit, it can provide helpful information about the way you sleep.

Separating the main sleep stages, it can tell you how you slept and if you were restless. This data can then be shared with other apps via Apple HealthKit, so you can identify what's wrong and put actions into place. The only thing is, though, you need to have the Watch on all night - which may result in battery woes.

FREE | Download Sleep++

Best Apple Watch apps: Sleep++


One of the issues with Sleep++, although a great app, is that you have to manually start sleep tracking via the Apple Watch app - something that's quite easy to forget, especially when you're tired.

That's where AutoSleep comes in; as the name suggests, the app automatically starts tracking your sleep when you drift off to the land of nod, with no need to interact with the Watch at all. When you wake, you'll be provided with a notification detailing how well you slept, including sleep quality, average heart rate and the amount of deep sleep you got. 

Free | Download AutoSleep


While Strava is similar to the Adidas Running App, Strava boasts the ability to track bike rides as well as running. Strava will display real-time stats including elevation gain, average speed, distance and heart rate during your exercise session.

It can also be split into different segments that gives you details of your workout, helping to keep you motivated. And while we're talking motivation, you'll also receive a virtual trophy whenever you set a personal record. Everyone likes trophies!

FREE | Download Strava

Best Apple Watch apps: Strava

Chirp for Twitter

Twitter was one of the first social networking apps available on the Apple Watch when it launched back in 2015, but much like Instagram, the app was canned due to a lack of use. But what if you were one of the few people that made use of Twitter on the Apple Watch?

The good news is that indie dev Will Bishop took matters into his own hands and created Chirp for Twitter, a customisable Twitter app for the Apple Watch. You can scroll through your timeline, interact with tweets and even read/reply to direct messages, all without getting your iPhone out of your pocket.

It's a niche, admittedly, but it's one of the better Twitter apps currently available for the Apple Watch. 

FREE | Download Chirp for Twitter


Organising an Uber ride is far from complicated. You just need to make a quick call from your smartphone. But if you're out and about - say shopping - then things would be a lot easier if you could do it from your wrist. Enter the Uber app for Apple Watch.

The app is not only easy-to-use, but provides you with all the important information about your Uber. For instance, you can get an estimate of when the driver will get to you and your location, and you're able to see what car the driver has so you can find them easily. Just like all of Uber's other apps, it's completely free to use. You just pay for the ride, obviously.

FREE | Download Uber

Best Apple Watch apps: Uber


Lots of fitness fans are tracking their water intake at the moment, and this app makes that process as convenient as possible. It also nags you with reminders throughout the day so you don't fall behind. 'Water' good idea.

£4.99/$4.99 | Download WaterMinder

Best Apple Watch apps: WaterMinder


Onefootball is an essential app for any football fan, allowing you to track thousands of teams and hundreds of leagues around the world on your Apple Watch. You can follow your favourite players, clubs and national teams, and you'll get real-time scores and related content as matches happen. Not bad for a free app, right?

Free | Download Onefootball

One Drop

One Drop is a very handy app for those with diabetes. The simple app allows you to log glucose, meds, food and activity without the need to get your iPhone out of your pocket, and also provides an overview of daily goals and progress at a glance. You've also got the option of scheduling medication reminders, and you'll also find automatic card counting built-in too. 

Free | Download One Drop