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Why Does My Apple Watch Vibrate Randomly?

The most likely reason that your Apple Watch is vibrating randomly is because of a connection issue to your phone. When you walk away from your phone, your phone and your watch may no longer be within range of each other, and there may be a syncing issue. However, it could be because of your notification settings which you’ll need to change in the app. 

Keep reading to learn about some of the reasons your Apple Watch might be vibrating randomly and what phantom vibrations syndrome is, and why your Apple Watch might not be vibrating at all. 

Why is Your Apple Watch Vibrating?

If you find that your Apple Watch is vibrating at weird times without actually having any clear indicator of something to trigger it to do so, here are a few of the reasons that watch my feet vibrating.

Lossing the Connection with Your iPhone

The most common reason that you are Apple watch isn’t vibrating without any apparent cause is because it’s lost a connection with your iPhone. There’s a specific range that your iPhone and Apple Watch can connect wirelessly, and if you leave that range, you won’t be able to get notifications or sync between your watch and your phone.

If you don’t like having this feature on the watch iOS 8 that notifies you when you are out of range of your iPhone, you can quickly turn it off so that it won’t happen again. On your watch, find the find my app and open it. Scroll down to the notify when left behind option and tap it so that the toggle says off.

Chimes Are On

The Apple Watch also has a chime feature that works a lot like old-fashioned clock Chimes that will give you an audible or vibration alert to tell you what time it is without looking at the watch. If your sound isn’t on, there will always be this vibration that tells you what time it is.

If you notice that you’re getting this vibration from your Apple watch on the hour, it may be because the chimes feature is enabled. To turn off the chime feature, you need to go through the watch’s settings and up and look for accessibility, and then scroll down until you find chimes and toggle it off.

Pre Alerts Are On

The Apple Watch has a setting to give you a pre-alert before the actual notification. This means that your watch will vibrate shortly before you get an alert. This feature is to help against phantom vibrations that people sometimes feel when they aren’t getting a vibration from their watch.

However, it sometimes has the opposite effect in that it’s just having more alerts coming from your watch that can confuse users who don’t know about the feature. Fortunately, you can quickly turn it off by going into the settings app and looking at sounds and haptics. Scroll down until you find prominent haptics and click the toggle to be off.

Software Glitches

Another reason that your Apple watch may be vibrating without any apparent cause is because of a software glitch. This glitch could be from the watch OS itself, or it could be one of the apps linking to your watch. It can take a few steps to fix any glitch that is going on.

First, you should restart your watch. Press and hold the button below a crown on the side of the watch, then slide the power off option when the power menu appears. Turn the watch back on.

Restarting the watch should be enough to fix anything part of the watch OS itself, but if you think that the clutch might be coming from one of your apps, you’re going to have to do some testing to figure out which one it is. The easiest way to fix it is to turn off the vibration feedback altogether.

Open the Settings app and scroll down until you find the sounds and 6:30 settings. Then turn off the toggle for the optic alerts. This will turn off all vibrations from your notifications, including texts, calls, and calendar events. You can also go through the individual notification settings for each app and see which one might be causing this glitch to occur.

The Band is Moving

The Apple watch comes without loss of a versatile design that includes a band that you can easily replace to match your wardrobe or with the activity or doing. Unfortunately, having the bands moving around on your wrist can also feel like a notification vibration, and the weather whoop band tends to do this the most.

When you flex your wrist, the band ends May rub together and cause a vibration that feeling. You can test this by either switching to a different band like the silicone Sports band or just moving around your wrist and seeing if that seems to be the cause of this random vibration feeling.

What is Phantom Vibration Syndrome?

Phantom vibration syndrome means that you expect your phone to vibrate, so you think it is even when it isn’t. This comes from the train response of getting used to the vibration and this expecting to feel it because you want to be able to respond as quickly as possible.

The big issue here is that there isn’t any vibration coming from the watch, and it’s just something that you feel when you are feeling a sense of anticipation or expecting some feedback. You may want to take some short breaks from wearing your Apple watch so that you can rewire your brain and reduce these Phantom vibrations you are feeling.


Most of the time, your Apple watch seems to be randomly vibrating because you are losing the connection between the watch and your iPhone, which means you won’t be able to get any notifications of it, text messages, or phone calls. It could also be that there isn’t any vibration at all, and you’re just thinking you’re feeling it because you expected. 

Steven Carr

Steven is a certified IT professional and gaming enthusiast. He has been working in the tech industry for over 10 years, and specializes in all things Tech-related. When he's not geeking out over the latest hardware or software release, he can be found testing out the latest video game.

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