It appears that there is a security feature that is present in Apple's iPhone, but unfortunately lacking in the company's first ever wearable device. Released last month, Apple Watch has generated buzz over its many features and for potentially igniting the smartwatch industry, but apparently, it does not have the Activation Lock feature, which can discourage thieves from stealing Apple devices.
It is true that the Apple Watch is quite an impressive achievement by Apple. Paired with an iPhone, the wearable device can alert users to incoming calls and text messages, facilitate mobile payments through Apple Pay, and can even run various apps that are designed for the Apple Watch.
But as pointed out by iDownloadBlog, the fact that the Apple Watch does not have the Activation Lock feature may prove to be a disadvantage. This feature debuted a couple of years ago in 2013 with the launch of iOS 7. As an automatically activated security measure, Activation Lock requires the user's Apple ID and password in order to delete or reactivate an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, essentially making the device unusable for thieves. Since the introduction of this feature, the number of iPhone theft cases have significantly dropped in major cities around the world.
However, this feature is nowhere to be found in the Apple Watch, which is kind of a bummer, especially to those who intend to use the wearable device extensively. As found out by Jeff Benjamin, writer of iDownloadBlog, the Apple Watch can easily be restored to its default settings, with its passcode quickly bypassed, and then be paired with a different iPhone device.
Granted, a thief thinking of snatching a user's Apple Watch will still need to know the passcode when accessing personal data. And obviously, a device that is attached to a wrist is way harder to steal than one that is inside a pocket or bag (say, an iPhone, for instance). But it is an entirely different story when the Apple Watch is left behind or left unattended.
Users, however, still have some options if their Apple Watch ever gets lost or nicked. For instance, they can deactivate Apple Pay in case this happens. Or users can set their Apple Watch to check itself against the Apple ID of their paired iPhone, or to require a password when it gets unpaired.
Furthermore, one must remember that the Apple Watch is still a very new product after all. Having detected this security flaw in its wearable device, Apple should be able to rectify this as early as it can, or at least, roll out a software update for users who have already purchased their Apple Watch devices.
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