Apple has acknowledged that the “unlock with Apple Watch” feature may work with its new iPhone 13 devices and has promised to fix the problem in a future software update.
“You might see ‘Unable to Communicate with Apple Watch’ if you try to unlock your iPhone while wearing a face mask, or you might not be able to set up Unlock with Apple Watch,” the iPhone maker said in the support document.
This problem will be resolved in a future software update. Until the update is available, you can disable Unlock with Apple Watch and unlock your iPhone 13 with your passcode.
Go to Settings > Face ID & Passcode to disable Unlock with Apple Watch.
Previously, several users discovered that they could not unlock their iPhone 13 with the Apple Watch and instead received an error.
Reddit user Monzilla88 first reported the problem to the subreddit r/AppleWatch.
They stated that both their iPhone 13 Pro and Apple Watch SE have the most recent iOS and watchOS updates.
“Whenever I try to enable unlock with Apple Watch on my phone I get an error saying “Unable to communicate with Apple Watch,” they posted.
According to the report, Monzilla88 claimed that they tried unpairing and repairing, hard resetting both devices, and turning on and off passcodes, but to no avail.
More than 20 other users have reported the same issue, with others noting that the feature works fine on iOS 15 on older iPhone models, such as the iPhone 11 Pro Max and the iPhone X.