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Troubleshooting Phone notifications (Android)

After enabling Phone notifications and syncing your Polar Vantage/Polar Ignite, all notifications shown on your Android mobile device’s lock screen will appear on your watch.

If you are having trouble getting phone notifications to work, try the steps below. Check that:

  • Phone notifications are enabled:
    • Open the Polar Flow app, go to the Devices menu and make sure Phone notifications are ON.
    • On your watch, go to Settings > General settings > Phone notifications. Check that Phone notifications are ON.
  • Bluetooth is enabled on your mobile device.
  • Flight mode is not enabled on your watch (Settings > General settings > Flight mode).
  • Your mobile device is within Bluetooth range from your watch.
  • Syncing between the Polar Flow app and your watch works as expected.

If you’re having trouble syncing with Vantage see Syncing data between Vantage M/Vantage V and Polar Flow app fails.

If you’re having trouble syncing with Ignite see Syncing data between Ignite and Polar Flow app fails.

If your watch does not show any notifications from your mobile device

Try the following steps one at a time to fix the problem with Phone notifications. See if new notifications appear on your watch after every step:

  1. Set Flight mode ON and OFF from the watch: Settings > General settings > Flight mode.
  2. Restart your watch. This can de be done from Settings > General settings > About your watch and scroll down to Restart.
  3. Restart your phone.
  4. Open the Polar Flow app and make sure Phone notifications are enabled in the Devices menu.
  5. Sync your watch with the app to establish a connection with the phone.

If notifications still do not appear, check that the Notification access for the Polar Flow app is still valid. The path might differ between Android devices but usually this can be checked with these steps.

  • On the mobile device, go to Settings > Apps & notifications > Advanced (settings) > Special app access > Notification access:
  • If Polar Flow is disabled, enable it and see if notifications work.
  • If Polar Flow is enabled already, disable it for a moment and enable it again. See if notifications work after that.

Unpair the devices and connect them again, if notifications still do not appear on your watch:

  1. Uninstall Polar Flow app from your phone.
  2. Unpair your watch with the phone, and pair it again:
    1. On your phone, remove your watch from the list of paired Bluetooth devices as follows: Go to Settings > Bluetooth, choose your watch and Forget this Device.
    2. On your watch go to Settings > General settings > Pair and sync > Paired devices. Choose your phone. Remove pairing? is displayed. Confirm by pressing OK.
    3. Pair your watch again with the Flow app. For pairing instructions for Polar Vantage see How do I pair my Vantage M/Vantage V with the Polar Flow app? For pairing instructions for Polar Ignite see How do I pair my Ignite with the Polar Flow app? NOTE: Do NOT use your phone’s Bluetooth menu to pair the watch.
  3. Go to Devices menu in the Polar Flow app and turn Phone notifications/Smart notifications on. Sync the changes to your watch and see if notifications now appear on your watch.

The last option is to perform a factory reset on your watch. For factory reset instructions for Polar Vantage see How do I reset the Vantage M/Vantage V? For factory reset instructions for Polar Ignite see Restarting and resetting Ignite.

On your phone, check the list of paired Bluetooth devices and remove your watch from the list if it's there. Then, set up your watch again. For instructions on setting up Polar Vantage see How do I start using my Vantage M/Vantage V? For instructions on setting up Polar Ignite see How do I start using my Ignite?

If notifications stop appearing on your watch

If notifications appear only when the phone is unlocked and/or stop appearing on your watch after a while, please disable all power saving and optimizing features on your phone. If the Polar Flow app is terminated in the background, this might cause the notifications to stop appearing on your watch.

For instructions on disabling power saving features see How to disable power saving and optimizing features for the Polar Flow and Polar Beat Android apps

Persistent "Phone notifications are ON" notification in the status bar of an Android device

Once you’ve enabled Phone notifications in the Polar Flow app and synced your Polar device, you might see a persistent notification on your phone’s status bar indicating that Phone notifications are on. This notification cannot be swiped away or closed like a normal notification as its purpose is to keep the Polar Flow app alive in the background even if power saving features are enabled on the phone.

Some phones might even show an unread notification badge on top of the Polar Flow app icon when Phone notifications are on.

If you’re using a phone with Android 8 or newer, you can disable the Phone notifications are on notification and the app icon badge with these steps:

  1. On the phone, go to Settings > Apps & notifications > All apps > Polar Flow > App notifications
  2. Disable App icon badge or Allow notification dot
  3. Disable Phone notifications. This will disable the persistent notifications from the status bar.

If you’re using Android version 7 or older, you should be able to disable the Polar Flow app notifications altogether at Settings > Apps / Application manager > Polar Flow > Notifications.

These steps shouldn’t stop Smart notifications appearing on your watch but disabling all power saving and optimizing features for the Polar Flow app might still be necessary.

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