Behaviour controlling Roon on iPhone via Apple Watch?

I sometimes use Roon remote on my iPhone to listen on my balcony via Bluetooth noise-cancelling headphones paired to my iPhone. When doing that the basic volume and transport controls get mirrored to my Apple Watch and I can use the crown to raise or lower the volume and press pause to pause playback but then, even though when paused the pause/play button on my watch changes from the pause icon to the play (as in “press me again to resume playback”) icon if I then press the play icon on my Apple Watch it doesn’t start playing again, it just does nothing, and I have to get my iPhone out of my pocket and press the play button in the Roon app on my iPhone to get it playing again.

Do others see this behaviour? Is it expected or should I be filing a support issue?

I’m honestly pretty happy with this 3 out of 4 performance (volume-up, volume-down and pause working but play not), and I do also see the details of the currently playing track on my watch display which is really great, but it is just one step short of a clean sweep. (Well, if the queue button displayed the Roon queue that would be fantastic so maybe it’s two steps short of the clean sweep.)

I don’t think Roon has officially stated that it works with Apple Watch.

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if ya really want to use your watch, workaround might be to use ARC…

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Is that based on experience Chris? Even if not I can see the logic of your suggestion since ARC was designed from the ground up and I think I read is more native to the platforms it is running on so I can see why one might hope it will integrate more completely with the iOS transport controls.

Roon ARC stopped working for me after I updated my router which now has UPnP disabled so I need to do a bit of messing around to get it working again (I don’t want to just enable UPnP) but it does sound like an experiment worth doing so thanks for the suggestion. And please do let me know if you are speaking from experience of using Roon ARC with Apple Watch.

Maybe try setting up DSP volume on your Audio device and see if this fixes the behavior.

When I’m using ARC the controls show up on my watch

Not the full experience, but pause, play, shuffle, skip etc.


Superb. Thanks Chris. That’s definitely the way for me to go then. It’s actually a solution rather than a workaround for me because when I’m on my balcony listening to music I actually have 3 devices in play. The iPhone is simply the output so I care not one iota about its interface. My watch is the most convenient and always available way to control volume, play/pause (and skip as you mentioned) but if I want to browse my albums to choose what to queue up next, or look at metadata to read about what Roon Radio just suggested for me, I have an iPad to do that so if I have full transport control via the Watch, which it sounds like Roon ARC will get me, my iPhone will never need to be taken out of my pocket. (Yes, I can also resume paused playback from the iPad but sometimes I wander away from the balcony to get something (usually a drink) so if I want to pause the music for some reason I don’t always have the iPad with me.)