Alternative Third Party Apple Watch Bands: Which one will you buy?
Which Watch Did you Buy?
So lets get to it, I bought a 42mm Sport model, with the black sport band. Don't get me wrong, I love it, and the strap is comfy just like when I tried it on in the store. But if I had to be honest? I want a bit more. I don't mind the sport band when I am active and exercising, but I would prefer something a bit more for daily wear. But just look at the prices of those Apple Store Bands, I mean, you're looking at a range anywhere from $149-$449 for anything made out of leather or metal.
What alternatives are there other than the Apple Store?
Unsurprisingly, there has been a push for the development of third party Apple Watch bands. And why not? Think about the covers and case protectors that came out for the iPhone and iPads, it should come as no surprise that companies see the Apple Watch market as something to also create products for. Amazon and Ebay have a ton of third party bands listed, but most of them seem to have a variety of ratings and the images haven't exactly impressed me so far. That being the case, I have put together a list of third party developers making Apple Watch bands, that I thought were unique, and those that are early adopters of the Apple Watch may be interested in getting for themselves.
- Monowear - Starting off as a Kickstarter project, Monowear is a company dedicated towards making swanky and cheaper Apple Watch bands. What is most interesting, is that they have very similar items to the Apple Watch store, but for a significant less cost. They have bands made out of metal (including link and mesh), leather, and nylon. The most expensive band is the metal bands, coming in at $120, and the nylon bands will run you $60. Taking this into consideration, the cost is a significant decrease compared to the Apple Store. The only issue is currently they are launching their products, with estimations in late June, so it is hard to tell what the quality currently is like.
- Casetify - A company that specializes in making cases and accessories for Apple Products, their niche is the ability for you print on your images or designs to personalize it for yourself. They recently launched an Apple Watch band design, which is pretty cool if you are into the personalization factor (just please don't put cats on them). You only need to login and design what you want, and hey, you can even use your Instagram images and filter them to your delight! Running around $70 for your time.
- Cubify - Releasing their FlexBands, these Apple Watch bands are quite distinctive in terms of their design. They have more of a molded appearance, and a heavy texture to them that I can really see standing out. That being the case, I dunno if they would get dirty easily or need to be cleaned often. I recommend giving them a look, especially for something different. They cost around $40.
- Click - Ok, lets say you don't want to go out and buy a brand new band, but want to retool a current band you have? Well, Click is another successful Kickstarter project designed just for you! The premise is that Click develops an insert that you place the band into, and then click into place on the Apple Watch. Easy right? This might be a cheaper option, and a good way to reuse your old watch bands, and currently running in at $28 for the aluminum piece or $38 for the stainless steel option. They also sell bands if you are curious.
- WiPowerBand - Well, this isn't exactly an aesthetic choice in a band, but those power hungry fiends that will obsessively poor over their watch just as much as their phones now. It is essentially a band with an extra battery pack inside and will charge the watch wirelessly, and looks just as clunky as those phones with an extended power supply case. Costs around $100.
- Lunatik - Some people are all about aesthetics, you can spot them a mile away with a bedazzled iPhone case or one that that looks like an animal. Then you have those that want their phone to look like a tank. If you are the later, well, Lunatik has a Kickstarter going on that you may be very interested in. Essentially, this will make your Apple Watch look like Fort Knox with a heavy case around it. The only thing that would make this better is if Leatherman partnered up and put their multi-tool wrist device with it.
Which am I getting?
I ordered Monowear's Nylon band, and thats mainly because I was using a Timex watch with a similar band before I got my Apple Watch. I am found for that type of band, as its durable, and seems to blend in well with my attire. I don't currently see the need to encase my watch in a cumbersome strap or add on an extra battery, but time will tell and I will have to see if I make that purchase. I will review the Monowear band when I get it.