How to Set Up Cellular on Your Apple Watch Series 3?

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If you’ve recently invested in an Apple Watch Series 3, you’re probably wondering about the SIM card that comes with it. After all, the Series 3 is the first Apple Watch to come with cellular capabilities and a SIM card. But what is the SIM card, and how do you use it?

The SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) card is a tiny chip that stores information about your cellular subscription. It is inserted into your Apple Watch and connects you to your carrier’s network so that you can access data services like email, web browsing, and music streaming. The key difference between the Series 3 and earlier models of Apple Watch is that the Series 3 model has an embedded SIM (eSIM), which means that you don’t have to insert a physical SIM card into the watch in order to access cellular services.

To set up cellular on your Apple Watch Series 3, open up the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and tap ‘My Watch’ then ‘Cellular’. Once there, tap ‘Set Up Cellular’ to link your watch with your carrier’s network. You can also view your ICCID (International Communications Customer Identification Number) from this screen by tapping ‘View ICCID’.

If you have a GPS-only version of an Apple Watch (i.e., no cellular connection), you can still do most of what a cellular-enabled watch will do as long as it is connected to an iPhone nearby via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. However, without a cellular connection, some features such as making phone calls or sending text messages will be unavailable.

So now that you know more about the eSIM in the Apple Watch Series 3, why not take advantage of its many features? You can stay connected while out and about without having to lug around your phone everywhere – just make sure to keep it charged!

How to Set Up Cellular on Your Apple Watch Series 3? 1

Does the Apple Watch Series 3 Have a SIM Card?

No, the Apple Watch Series 3 does not have a traditional SIM card. Instead, it has a built-in eSIM (embedded SIM) which is a tiny chip that stores your phone number and other data. Your Apple Watch’s eSIM is associated with your carrier and allows you to make calls and connect to cellular data networks right from your watch. To view the ICCID of your eSIM, go to the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, tap General > About > View Account, then tap on i next to your carrier name.

Can I Upgrade My Apple Watch Series 3 to Cellular?

Yes, you can make your Apple Watch Series 3 cellular. To get started, you will need to purchase a separate cellular plan from your wireless carrier that is specifically designed for the Apple Watch. After you have purchased a plan, you can set up cellular on your watch by going to the Settings app on your watch and tapping Cellular > Set Up Cellular. You can also set up cellular later from the Apple Watch app on your iPhone by opening the Apple Watch app, tapping the My Watch tab, then tapping Cellular > Set Up Cellular.

Does the Apple Watch Require a SIM Card?

No, an Apple Watch does not use a physical SIM card. Instead, it uses eSIM technology. The eSIM is a virtual SIM card that is embedded in the Apple Watch and allows you to connect to cellular networks without needing a physical SIM card. If you have a GPS-only Apple Watch, it will do everything the cellular model can do as long as your iPhone is nearby.

Using Apple Watch 3 Cellular Without an iPhone

Yes, you can use an Apple Watch 3 cellular without your iPhone nearby. With an activated cellular plan, you can stay connected to the internet and make calls, send/receive messages, and even access certain apps. You can also track your fitness goals, listen to music, and use Apple Pay without needing your iPhone.

Do I Need a Data Plan for an Apple Watch?

Yes, you do need a data plan for an Apple Watch. Your Apple Watch must be connected to your iPhone, and your iPhone must have an eligible mobile data plan with a supported network provider in order to set up and use mobile on your watch. Your iPhone and Apple Watch must use the same network provider,* and you must be within your provider’s network when you set up mobile on your watch. Without a data plan, features like cellular calling, text messaging, cellular data usage (including Find My), and more won’t be available on your watch.

Activating Cellular on an Apple Watch

To make your Apple Watch cellular, you will need to have a compatible cellular plan. After you have the plan, open the app on your iPhone, tap the My Watch tab, then tap Cellular. Scroll down to the Cellular Data Usage section and follow the prompts to set up your cellular connection. Once that’s done, swipe up from the watch face to open Control Center and tap the cellular button. Finally, turn Cellular on or off as needed.

Using an Apple Watch Without an iPhone

Yes, you can use your Apple Watch without an iPhone. If you have a cellular model of the Apple Watch, you can connect it to a cellular network for cellular calls, texts, and data. You can also connect your watch to a Wi-Fi network if it’s in range to send and receive data. Additionally, if you’ve set up an Apple Watch for another family member, they can use their own cellular or Wi-Fi connection with their watch.


In conclusion, the Apple Watch is a powerful and convenient device that can help you stay connected on the go. It comes in both GPS-only and cellular models, with the cellular model using eSIM technology for connectivity. With its various features, such as step tracking and messaging capabilities, the Apple Watch can be a great way to stay organized and productive while away from your phone.

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Sanjeev Singh

Sanjeev is the tech editor at DeviceMAG. He has a keen interest in all things technology, and loves to write about the latest developments in the industry. He has a passion for quality-focused journalism and believes in using technology to make people's lives better. He has worked in the tech industry for over 15 years, and has written for some of the biggest tech blogs in the world. Sanjeev is also an avid photographer and loves spending time with his family.