Watch OS 7 & iOS 14 breaks Authenticator app functionality

[German]A brief information for user of an Apple smart watch or iOS 14 device, using Microsoft’s Authenticator app. After updating to Watch OS 7 or iOS 14, communication with the two-factor authentication app no longer works. And there are also problems with GPS tracking under Watch OS 7.


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Issues with the Microsoft Authenticator app

The Microsoft Authenticator app is recommended for Azure Multi-Factor Authentication according to this Microsoft document. The Microsoft Authenticator app is available for Android and iOS.

Authenticator-App Issues on Twitter

Barb Bowman points out in the above tweet that there are issues with the Authenticator app when Watch OS 7 or iOS 14 is installed. The Watch OS 7 or iOS 14 update breaks the functionality of the Authenticator app for Apple Smartwatch. On Technet there is this thread where someone describes this.

Apple watch after approval message ‘something went wrong’

After installing watchOS 7 I approve the authenticator pop on my watch I receive the message ‘something went wrong’. I can only get the approval to work to do this from the app on my iphone. Anybody else got the same problem? Is it watchos7 related?

The error is confirmed by several people. According to a Microsoft employee the problem is known and the developers are working on it. Maybe as a hint, if someone is using the Apple Smartwatch for two-factor authentication.

Watch OS 7 causes GPS tracking issues

Softpedia also reports in this article that there are problems with GPS tracking after updating to Watch OS 7. Users complain on Apple’s forums that no GPS information is logged for their training. Here is such an entry:


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Activities not recording GPS data (after watchOS 7 upgrade)

This morning I upgraded my iPhone XS Max to iOS 14 and my S4 Watch to watchOS 7. I then went for a run, using the Outdoor Run activity on my Watch as usual, holding my iPhone while I ran (as I was listening to a podcast with AirPods). When I finished, everything was recorded as normal, and I could sync the activity to Strava.

Later, I went for a walk. I used the Outdoor Walk activity on my Watch, but this time didn’t take my iPhone. When I returned, and attempted to upload the activity to Strava, I received a warning that no GPS/route data was present. I checked the Fitness and Health apps, and sure enough, there was no route on the map – only the starting point.

I spoke to someone at Apple Support and they suggested I turned off/back on a couple of related privacy settings. I have since tried another Outdoor Walk activity, without the phone present, and the problem persists – no GPS/route data.

My wife also tried the same this evening, after upgrading her iPhone X and S4 Watch too. She had the same results – i.e. with just the Watch, no GPS/route information was saved with the activity.

The user asks whether other users are affected. Other Apple Watch owners confirmed this issue. An Unpair/Reset/Repair of the Apple Watch does not solve the problem. Apple Support has confirmed to a user that the problem is a problem and the developers are working on a solution. Anyone affected by these issues?


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7 Responses to Watch OS 7 & iOS 14 breaks Authenticator app functionality

  1. Jeroen Soree says:

    Same here, I loved the functionality to approve sign in requests on my wrist.
    Now running on 14.0.1 iPhone XSMax and 7.0.1 Watch Series 4 after te update last night I still have issues………

    • Jeroen Soree says:

      Hey Guys, I got it working again! I had to remove the Authenticator App from my iPhone and re-installed it. Then, after restoring a backup, I disabled the App Lock on the Authenticator on my iPhone. I am now able to approve sign in requests on both my iPhone and my Apple Watch.

      • Nico says:

        Just disabling the App Lock on the Authenticator on my iPhone did the trick with me. Using IOS 14.0.1 & WatchOS 7.0.1 .

      • Dave says:

        Thank you – I was really worried I’d have to use my phone again – even though the watch is so much easier. Disabling the App Lock did the trick.

  2. John Rawcliffe says:

    I have the same issue and after uninstalling the app on the watch it now wants me to set up all accounts again but they remain functional on the phone and send alerts to the watch ??? not sure what is going on

  3. Jonathan says:

    After updating to ios14 I lost access to all my activity maps (i.e. routes) for my entire workout history and new activities (on my iwatch) only record the “starting” location, no paths or routes are recorded. GPS appears to be working as I get activity statistics (i.e. length and elevation gain/loss).

    I also experienced the same problem with authenticator, that i cannot approve with my iwatch and receive the error “something went wrong”.

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  5. Mike says:

    Same problem with MS Authenticator and Apple Watch OS 7 ..

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