G6 does not work well with Apple Watch

I love being able to check my BG by glancing at my watch, but much more often than not, it’s just not there. I have a Series 2 watch. Are the newer models any better?

I don’t have any issues with my series 3 Nike or series 5 ceramic edition. The series 2 is outdated both in software and hardware and probably can’t handle the Dexcom information

Do you have a Dexcom complication? Does it always display a reading?

Yes, until I reach the 50 update limit than I get the ———

50 update limit?

Apple only allows third party apps to update their info on the watch face 50 times per charge to 100% battery level . This is how they keep a tight lid on their watch faces. Dexcom updates every 5 minutes, after a few hours you will no longer see a numeric value, instead see three dashes. You just press on the dashes and the app opens up to display your BG value. Close the app and the numeric value will come back for a short time.

As long as it’s connected to my iPhone (8+) and it’s connected to my G6, my Series 3 works great

Maybe that’s my problem, then. I’ll have to see if it’s better early in the day. That really stinks.

It’s not a Dexcom issue but an Apple quirk

Any workaround other than charging back to 100%?

Nope

One thing that you can do to always have a CGM reading on your watch is to use the Sugarmate app on your phone which functions as a follower to Dexcom. Sugarmate uses the calendar app to continuously sync to the Apple Watch. It is a little quirky to set up but works well. The only unfortunate part is that the font is smaller than the font of the Dexcom complication.

Once you get Sugarmate set up, you don’t have to keep it open on your phone although some people like it better than the Dexcom app. You can use both if you like. BTW I also have an Apple Watch 2.

In the attached screenshot, the calendar app with Sugarmate readings is in the center. The Dexcom is the bottom right. Sugarmate is actually more up to date than the Dexcom complication and in this case is one point lower than the complication. My phone app agrees with the calendar app.7A102761-4764-4228-AEC9-1D8B4CEFB897_4_5005_c

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That’s interesting, Laddie. In checking this morning, I am still getting the —, despite the fact that it’s only been a little over an hour since I took my watch off of the charger, so I’m dealing with more than the update limitation issue. At any rate, I have ordered a new S5 watch because I have been having some issues with atrial fibrillation, and the new version can check for a-fib. I guess I’ll see how the two compare and decide if I want to go the Sugarmate route.

I have the 5 and still see the Dexcom complication drop out occasionally. It’s definitely better on the 5 series compared to the 3 and 4 series I used previously. I’ve used my 5 series watch with iPhone 10 and 11 - no difference.

Agree. I tried the same thing this morning with the same result.

@Laddie - Thanks so much for the info on Sugarmate. I installed it at it’s working perfectly. I also have the Dexcom complication installed so I can get to the trend graphs quickly.

Someone on an Apple products message board said the 50-update limit might be across all apps, so that could happen quickly.

I don’t have an Apple Watch but I am a huge fan of Sugarmate. I have the desktop version, where it lives up in the Mac status bar, as well as the iPhone app. My favorite thing about it is that it gives a digital indicator of what the current reading is relative to the previous one. So mine currently says 217 +1, indicating yeah I’m having a spike thanks to my Friday treat, a BLT from Max’s Deli, but the rate of increase is leveling out (previous reading was +0) and should be curving down soon.
Screen Shot 2020-02-07 at 2.33.27 PM

I find that +/- incremental reading extremely informative, better than just an up/down arrow.

And you get the expanded display when you click on the status bar icon:

It includes an activity register for logging food and exercise, which I don’t use much, and the phone app version includes a carb calculator, which I do find handy. Altogether a well designed app. Best of all they seem to resist the temptation to keep hanging additional bells and whistles on it just because their developers need to have something to do.

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As I noted in another thread, the up/down arrow can be misleading. I’ve seen up arrows when my latest reading was the same as the prior one, and the 90-degree up arrow when my BG just wasn’t rising rapidly enough to justify it, IMO. I’ll definitely give sugarmate a try.

I’m also very impressed with their support. I was having trouble with install this morning and sent a support e-mail request. I had an answer less than 10 minutes later! I’m used to sending these kinds of things and waiting 24-48 hours for a reply. Granted many of these places are in Asia, but not all of them.

I still get lots of — with the Dexcom complication. But Sugarmate calendar readings are always there because the calendar app bypasses some of Apple restrictions for how often things can update. I have to admit this morning when I wrote my reply, I had — with Dexcom, but by the time I took the phone, a Dexcom number appeared.

I have to admit that now that I am using Control IQ on my Tandem pump, the pump has a ton more info than my watch and phone. Can’t wait to get Tandem info on my phone but that will be a while.

Things you like better about the 5, in addition to better Dexcom contact? I’m thinking of upgrading from my 3 and wondering if there’s more than just the always on face? I’ve had trouble having the Sugarmate entry update on the calendar, but have usually had a Dexcom reading.

TIA