The Apple Watch and watchOS have had some bizarre features added over time. Remember when you could spin the digital crown to “travel through time”, which actually just showed your appointments for the day?
It’s been a fun place for Apple to experiment, and while the Mickey Mouse and Toy Story watch faces have remained, so has the Walkie-Talkie feature that felt like mana from heaven for anyone who spent time climbing trees or pretending to be a super soldier as a kid. The idea of calling up your friends from your wrist was the thing of dreams back then, but in 2024, it remains more of a nightmare for Apple Watch users.
Is the Apple Watch walkie-talkie feature any good?
In a word, no – the Apple Watch walkie-talkie feature remains a missed opportunity. And much of that starts with the setup.
I use and Apple Watch Ultra (the first one), while my partner has an Apple Watch Series 9. Setting up walkie-talkie functionality initially was a painful experience, with invitations getting lost and being continually redirected to our respective contact menus.
It’s inconsistent at best and downright impossible to use at worst, and we’re using two of the latest models – surely you’d think there would be some hope it’d work, especially given Apple’s traditional “it just works” mentality.
Once it does work, though, at least it’s fun – pressing the big yellow ‘Talk’ button is as close as you’ll get to that childlike sense of wonder I described earlier, and voice quality is decent (although depending on the age of your watch, and its condition, your mileage may vary).
Sadly, it remains hamstrung by being focused just on the Apple Watch. I’d love for the app to…
“You deserve someone who would make you so happy that you forget that you had ever been sad; someone who would love you so much that you forget that you once wondered if you are worthy of love. You deserve someone who would make you realize that you deserve to be loved; but not just with any kind of love.” —Nica Rodriguez