How do I share my Apple Watch Activity progress with my friends?
With the iOS 10 and watchOS 3 updates coming this fall, you'll soon be able to share your Activity progress between you and your friends who wear the Apple Watch. (If you're running an Apple developer beta, you can get a sneak peak at this now.)
This should be a great tool for those looking to work out with friends without literally being at the same gym as them. When you enable Sharing on your iPhone and Apple Watch, other people can view your progress and compare and challenge themselves to work out as hard or harder than you, and even send you taunting messages along the way.
Here's how sharing Activity data will work with your iPhone and Apple Watch running iOS 10 and watchOS 3.
How to turn on Activity Sharing
To turn on Activity Sharing with your pals, you'll need to use your iPhone and the Activity app — if you attempt to try to do it directly from the Apple Watch, a prompt appears that says, "To start sharing your Activity, use the Activity app on your iPhone".
- Launch the Activity app from your iPhone's home screen.
- Tap the Sharing button.
Tap the red plus sign (+) in the upper right corner.
- Type the name or Apple ID of the friend you would like to share your Activity progress with.
Once you've done so, you'll be able to view your progress alongside that of your friends inside the Sharing pane of the Activity app.
What Activity data gets shared when I connect with friends?
When you add a pal to your Sharing screen, you'll see all their Activity data from that day forward — and they'll get all of yours, too. But what exactly is Activity data? It breaks down into a few categories:
- Your day's Activity rings (Move, Exercise, and Stand) and your personal goals for each
- Calories burned
- Minutes exercised
- Hours stood
- Steps taken
- Distance traveled
Your Apple Watch and the Activity app will never share more personal and confidential data with your friends, like your heartbeat, or any other Health data potentially collected by the watch.
You also won't get a comprehensive date view of your friends' data the way you can scrutinize your own. You'll have a week's worth of activity data in the Sharing screen and can tap on your friend's profile for each of those individual days, but you won't be able to see a graph of their movement over time, or any major trend line information.
Will I be able to look at this data on my Apple Watch?
Yup! After turning the feature on, you'll be able to go to the Activity app on your Apple Watch and swipe left; this will bring up the Sharing screen, which will show you list-size versions of your friends' information.
How to share your Activity rings without using Activity Sharing
Want to brag to someone who doesn't have an Apple Watch? You can share your Activity rings as a stand-alone image from the Sharing screen. Here's how.
- From the Sharing screen, tap on the Me entry.
- Tap on the Share button in the upper right corner.
Tap Save Image, Copy, Message, Mail, or any other Share Sheet option.
How to view your friends' Shared Activity data
After you've added a few friends to your Sharing screen, you'll see their Activity rings show up alongside their name, and (by default) their Move goal percentage and calories burned.
If you're less about calories and more interested in exercise time or miles walked, you can tap the Sort button in the upper left corner to change metrics: You can sort by alphabetical name, Move goal, Exercise goal, Steps goal, or Number of Workouts. (Currently, there aren't options for Breathe or Stand, but maybe we'll see them come in iOS 10.1.)
You can also message your friends en masse with a quippy joke or workout-related gif by tapping the Messages button in the upper right corner. This will start a group text with all your friends in your Shared Activity list — there's no way to create Activity groups as of yet, though you can message people individually.
How to view, mute, and remove a specific friend's Activity data on your iPhone
Tap on the person from the Sharing list to view their Activity profile. This displays their move rings, calories burned, exercise data, stand rings, steps, and distance for the day. There are a few things you can do from this screen:
- To mute Activity notifications from this person, tap Mute Notifications.
To remove this person from your Sharing list, tap Remove Friend.
- To send them an encouraging text (or some smack talk), tap the Messages button in the upper right corner.
- To view their Contact Card, tap the Info button in the upper right corner.
How to hide your activity data from your friends
Feeling ashamed about your Activity data lately? Going on vacation and don't want your pals to know how many steps you're not walking? You can hide your activity data on a per-friend basis with a few quick steps.
- Visit your friend's Activity profile.
- Scroll down and tap on Hide my Activity. All your Activity data will be hidden until further notice.
- To turn sharing back on, just tap Show my Activity.
Any other questions about how sharing Activity data from your Apple Watch will work in iOS 10 and watchOS 3? Let us know in the comments!