How to send a text message on your Apple Watch

Your Apple Watch might not have a full keyboard, but that doesn't mean you can't quickly text friends and family members right from your wrist. The Apple Watch's Messages app makes it easy to communicate via pre-set messages such as "What's up" and "Thanks," and the watch can recommend context-sensitive replies based on your conversation. You can also dictate replies with your voice, and even send emojis. WatchOS 3 added another way to text: the Scribble feature lets you sketch out words on your Apple Watch's display, with your scribbling converted into text. Here's how to text on Apple's wearable.

1. Select the bright green Messages app (the word balloon icon) from the Apple Watch's home screen.

2. Press firmly on the display to bring up the New Message icon.

If you see any recent conversations when opening the app, you can tap right into them. Otherwise tap that icon.

3. Tap the Add Contact field to select a recipient.

You can choose a recent contact, click the person icon on the right to search your contact list, or tap the microphone icon to search by voice.

4. Select Create Message.

You can then scroll down to pick a pre-set message to send. (You can customize these message on the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.)

Other options for responses include emojis (tap the smiley face icon), dictation (tap the microphone icon) or sending haptic feedback (tap the heart icon). To access the new Scribble feature, just tap Scribble and use your finger to draw on the Apple Watch display. Your drawing will convert to text. Here's how to create a digital touch message from the Apple Watch.

MORE: For additional tips, tricks, and how-tos, be sure to check out our complete Apple Watch Guide.

Philip Michaels is a Managing Editor at Tom's Guide. He's been covering personal technology since 1999 and was in the building when Steve Jobs showed off the iPhone for the first time. He's been evaluating smartphones since that first iPhone debuted in 2007, and he's been following phone carriers and smartphone plans since 2015. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics, old movies and proper butchery techniques. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.