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How to change the Apple Watch to military time

Switch over to 24-hour time in a pinch.

Published onAugust 5, 2022

One overlooked nicety about smartwatches is their ability to switch between analog and digital time. This includes the Apple Watch. You can easily pick a more classic aesthetic depending on your style or preference. But what if you wanted the Apple Watch’s clock to display in the more practical military time? Well, that’s a possibility, too, and here’s how to do it.


Open the Watch app on your iPhone, select Clock, then toggle on 24-Hour Time.

How to change the Apple Watch to military time

Using your iPhone, you can quickly switch your Apple Watch to display in 24-hour time.

  • Open the Watch app on your iPhone
  • Open the My Watch tab, then select Clock
  • Switch on 24-Hour Time
  • Change your Apple Watch face to a digital one if you haven’t already
    • If you use an analog watch face, the 24-Hour Time setting will make no difference to how the time is displayed on your watch
  • The clock should now be displayed in military time

Importantly, changing your Apple Watch’s time display mode won’t change your iPhone’s. That’s something to note if you like unity across your devices. If you need to activate military time on your iPhone, open Settings, then head to General > Date & Time > toggle on 24-Hour Time.


Yes, you should use military time on your Apple Watch if you plan on using a digital time face. Arguably, it’s much easier to sneak a glance at the time, as the AM and PM modifiers aren’t required. However, it’s purely down to your preference.

There’s no official watch face from Apple that allows the display of both 12-hour and 24-hour time. However, you may be able to set a complication to display one of the two.

There’s no difference between military time and 24-hour time, at least when referring to the time display on the Apple Watch.

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