Dictation mic and scribble pad missing on Apple Watch? Here’s how to get it back

Voice dictation and Scribble pad on the Apple Watch are valuable communication and messaging tools for countless Apple Watch users. Recent watchOS software updates for the Apple Watch have influenced the location of the Mic icon on your Apple Watch.

If you cannot locate the mic icon and do dictation on your Apple Watch, this article will help you find it and provide some tips around using dictation on your Apple Watch.

Related reading:

Dictation feature settings using watch app on iPhone

First, let’s get some of the basics squared:

  1. Ensure that you are using iOS 15+ or the latest iOS on your iPhone and at least WatchOS 8+ on your Apple Watch.
  2. You have to ensure that Dictation functionality has been enabled for your Apple Watch. To do this,
    1. Open Watch app on your iPhone
    2. Tap on GeneralApple Watch dictation mic missing
    3. Check to make sure you toggle on Enabled Dictation on this screen.Enable Dictation feature on Apple Watch

For most users, enabling dictation on this screen brings the voice dictation feature back on your Apple Watch.

Dictation Feature Settings on Apple Watch

Verify that the feature is auto-enabled on your Apple Watch once you have made the changes on the watch app on your iPhone.

To do this,

  1. Open the Settings app on your Apple Watch.
  2. Tap on General.
  3. Tap on Dictation. Make sure that you toggle on the on-device Dictation here on this screen.on-device dictation feature enabled Apple Watch

How to get the microphone and scribble pad on your Apple Watch

When you open the Messages app on your Apple Watch, tap on the bottom of the screen where it says iMessage, and it should open up the scribble pad. Missing Mic and Scribble pad on Apple Watch

You find the familiar ‘mic’ icon at the bottom right-hand corner of the screen.How to get scribble pad and Mic back on Apple Watch

Tap on the Mic icon, and it should show you the familiar input screen.

Using Dictation feature on Apple Watch
Tap here to edit the dictated text manually.

Once you have dictated your message, you can tap on the ‘pointer’ icon at the bottom right corner of the screen to manually edit your dictated text.

Enable Handoff on Apple Watch
Open Watch app on iPhone. Tap on Settings > General to locate the Handoff setting

If the handoff feature is enabled for both your devices, you also see an Apple Watch keypad notification on your iPhone. You can directly edit the message on your iPhone, and it automatically makes the changes to the text on your watch.

This is really helpful for users who struggle with typing and making changes directly on the Watch itself.

3 Useful Message app tips for the Apple Watch

Tip 1: When you read your messages directly on your Apple Watch using the Messages app, you can exactly know when the message arrived on your device by selecting a message by touching and holding it in it and swiping left.

Tip 2: On the Messages app on your Apple Watch, you can scroll down to the bottom of the screen, and under the section ‘MORE,’ you can tap on ‘Send Location’ to share your location with another user. This is really a helpful feature if you try to meet someone in an unfamiliar location.Share location using Apple Watch Messages app

Tip 3: Tapping on ‘Details’ on this screen will allow you to access the walkie-talkie feature directly from within the Message app on your Apple Watch.

If you turned on the ‘Enable Dictation’ feature and are still unable to locate the ‘mic’ icon on your Apple Watch, follow along.

The first thing to do is disable the dictation feature using the Watch app on your iPhone and enable it again. Do this a few times and then restart your iPhone and Apple Watch and check if the dictation feature is back on your Apple Watch.

Final thoughts

We hope you found this short article with the Apple Watch voice dictation settings and some of the Message app tips helpful.

Please let us know if you have any questions or would like to share a favorite Apple Watch tip or trick using the comments below.

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Sudz Niel Kar
I am a technologist with years of experience with Apple and wearOS products, have a BS in Computer Science and an MBA specializing in emerging tech, and owned the popular site AppleToolBox. In my day job, I advise Fortune 500 companies with their digital transformation strategies and also consult with numerous digital health startups in an advisory capacity. I'm VERY interested in exploring the digital health and fitness-tech evolution and keeping a close eye on patents, FDA approvals, strategic partnerships, and developments happening in the wearables and digital health sector. When I'm not writing or presenting, I run with my Apple Watch Ultra or Samsung Galaxy Watch and closely monitor my HRV and other recovery metrics.


  1. Why do they have to try to fix things that aren’t broken, I want to be able to reply with 1 button, 3 or 4 is a distraction


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