How to use the Apple Watch Digital Crown

Scroll through text or notifications

Maybe the most practical day-to-day use for the crown is scrolling through text in notifications and apps.

It's the best way to scroll through your emails, as it means no parts of the screen is blocked by your chubby finger.

Zoom in and out of maps

Apple Watch Digital Crown Maps

Welcome to the smartwatch future. One of the coolest uses of the Digital Crown is the ability to zoom in and out of the Maps app. Once a bit of map data is cached, you can leap back and forward very quickly.

This makes it pretty much the best-feeling map app developed fro a smartwatch. Even though it runs using Apple Maps, not our favourite, Google Maps.

Take a screenshot

The Apple Watch crown can be used to take screenshots. The process is pretty much just like an iPhone, you simply press the power button and crown at the same time.

You'll then see a flash and the screenshots will turn up in the Photos app, and your iPhone Photostream.

Control music volume

Apple Watch Digital Crown Music

The Digital Crown is also used to control volume while you listen to tunes from your Apple Watch.

Just head to the Music app, pick a tune to play and you'll see the basic playback controls on-screen. The crown controls the volume slider at the bottom.

The Digital Crown also makes the Apple Watch pretty much the best smartwatch for looking at photos.

In the Photos app, you can use the crown to zoom in and out of a gigantic mosaic formed of all the photos sync'd to your watch.

It's a sign that the Apple Watch is way more powerful than something like a Pebble Time.

It also works like a watch crown

Apple Watch Digital Crown Time Adjust

Apple would be missing a trick if it didn't let the Apple Watch Digital Crown work a bit like a normal watch crown, letting you change the time. Luckily, it does.

Naturally, the Apple Watch as standard takes its time settings from the iPhone it's connected to. However, you can also set it to show slightly ahead of the real time, up to 59 minutes.

Why? We're guessing simply because some people like to feel they're a bit ahead of the actual time when scheduling themselves via a watch.

Or maybe Apple just couldn't resist that extra shot of real watch flavour. You'll find this control in the Time submenu of Settings.

Andrew Williams

Andrew is a freelance journalist and has been writing and editing for some of the UK's top tech and lifestyle publications including TrustedReviews, Stuff, T3, TechRadar, Lifehacker and others.