Apple says it has recognized a difficulty the place the “unlock with Apple Watch” characteristic won’t work with its new iPhone 13 units. A brand new note on its support page describes the issue:
You would possibly see “Unable to Communicate with Apple Watch” should you attempt to unlock your iPhone whereas carrying a face masks, otherwise you won’t be capable to arrange Unlock with Apple Watch.
On Friday, customers on the r/AppleWatch Reddit board started reporting that they have been seeing this downside, and a few mentioned they have been in a position to make use of the Watch unlock characteristic with different iPhone fashions, together with the iPhone 11 Max.
Apple launched the power to unlock an iPhone that makes use of Face ID with a paired Apple Watch earlier this yr with the discharge of iOS 14.5. It turns out to be useful throughout a pandemic the place face masks are really helpful in lots of public locations, making it exhausting for Face ID to acknowledge you. The feature works on iPhone X and later, and requires each the iPhone and the Watch to have wi-fi and Bluetooth turned on. The Watch must have wrist detection turned on and be passcode-protected, and it must be in your wrist and unlocked for the characteristic to work.
Apple didn’t say what’s inflicting the issue with iPhone 13 units, simply that will probably be “fixed in an upcoming software update,” however not when to count on the replace. The assist web page notice advises switching off the “unlock with Apple Watch” characteristic and utilizing your passcode to unlock your iPhone 13 whereas masked within the interim.