Hands-on with a cost effective option to Apple’s Link Bracelet for Apple Watch

When Apple first revealed Apple Watch, among the things I was most thrilled about was the ability to make use of third-party bands. I was surprised when Apple announced the ability and even though I was quite sure I was going to purchase an Apple Watch, third-party band support solidified my choice.

Apple Watch has actually now been on the market for two months therefore far, companies have been slow to launch their aftermarket bands. With iPhone, business usually have cases available the day the device launches, but Apple Watch has presented a whole new set of challenges for device makers.


When I acquired Apple Watch, I went with the stainless model with the traditional buckle. Since my preliminary purchase, I have also bought a black Sport band, a Milanese Loop and now, an aftermarket stainless steel Link Bracelet. I love the concept of the band for my Watch matching the Watch itself, but Apple’s Link Bracelet offering appears ridiculously costly at $ 449. Looking to save money, I chose an aftermarket option…

… Key Details:

  • Made with stainless steel
  • Traditional link design, as opposed to Apple’s contemporary take
  • Suitable with all Apple Watch models
  • Exact same ports as first-party bands
  • Strong, sturdy design

Before everyone loses their temper about making use of a third-party Apple Watch band, apparently made by a no-name company, hear me out. The band is offered on Amazon (Update: Now sold out, more options below) and made by a company called Leakind. On Amazon, it has a 3 and a half star evaluation average, with some of the testimonials docking stars for problems that have actually now been taken care of. I’ll admit that when I purchased this stainless steel Apple Watch band, I had extremely low desires, however when I got it, I was pleasantly shocked.

Connecting the band to Apple Watch was simply as simple as connecting a first-party band. You simply move the ports into either side of the device and afterwards move the band onto your wrist. From there you push the clasp in between the 2 ends of the band to your wrist, then press both ends of the band to the clasp up until you hear a click.


Something I was clearly stressed over with the Leakind band was the strength of the ports to the Watch itself. I didn’t wish to stroll around worried that my $ 600 Watch was going to fall off of my wrist at any given second. In my usage with it so far, nevertheless, the band appears simply as strong as a main Apple band. The ports to the Watch are identical to the ones discovered on Apple bands, as well.

Looking at the design of the band you’ll observe that it’s not the same as Apple’s Link Bracelet. While Apple’s Link Bracelet supplies a more modern-day take on the link design, this third-party band is a classicly created bracelet. Being that it is a Link Bracelet, you do need to remove links from the band for it to properly fit your wrist. The packaging for the band provides no guidelines on ways to do this, so I was let to my own devices to figure it out. A fast Google search led me to a number of fantastic guides on the best ways to get rid of the links. You could likewise, of course, take the band to a jeweler if you aren’t as positive in your own capabilities to size the band. With Apple’s Bracelet, it’s extremely easy to remove links though.

Apple's Link Bracelet IMG_1425 copy

Another thing I was worried about with the aftermarket band was the finish and polish of the steel of the band matching the design of Apple Watch. After utilizing the band for a while, I’ve decided that while the polishes don’t match perfectly, they match close enough to where nobody will certainly discover any distinctions unless they are particularly looking for them. The appearance of the band appears to be ever so a little darker than that of the Watch. Apple’s Link Bracelet, however, is likewise darker than the Watch due to the fact that it’s brushed instead of sleek.


As far as comfort goes, this Link Bracelet is definitely heavier than bands like Apple’s Classic Fastening and Sport band, but it’s no heavier than Apple’s own Link Bracelet. It seemed jarring when I put it on for the very first time, however I’ve slowly gotten utilized to it and other bands seem too light at this point.

Clearly there are constantly some mistakes to making use of a third-party band. It’s hard to understand how well the band and its clasp system will certainly hold up after extended use. I also have concerns regarding the quality of the steel used with the aftermarket band. After utilizing it for a week, there are some light scratches that show up only in direct light, however there are also scratches on my Apple Watch, so it remains to be seen how the band will certainly look after two months usage.


Another thing you have to consider is that there are also MFi Apple Watch bands coming too. While those will likely be touted as higher quality than third-party choices like this one, they will certainly likewise be more expensive. They will, however, use Apple lugs and are approved by Apple.

Overall, the Leakind steel Apple Watch link band is a decent option to Apple’s own link bracelet. The Leakind band comes in at just $ 35 on Amazon, which is a take compared with the $ 449 Apple charges for its link bracelet. As I mentioned before, however, that rate distinction needed to come from someplace, so there are naturally some downsides to making use of an aftermarket band. It’s up to you to chosen whether the included comfort of making use of an Apple-made product deserves the rate distinction. If not, the Leakind Apple Watch link bracelet is available on Amazon for $ 35. However remember, you get what you pay for.

Update: The Leakind band has offered out on Amazon. There are other budget-friendly alternatives, nevertheless I can’t guarantee their quality:

  • Oittm Stainless-steel Band – –$36 Hoco Stainless-steel Band – –$35
  • T-Trees Stainless Steel Band – –$44
  • TabPow Apple Watch Stainless Steel Band – –$29
  • Hoco Stainless Steel Band (Area Black) – – $ 45
$ 35
Apple Watch

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