Get ready to personalise your Apple Watch with Apple-approved bands

Apple just invited third-party accessory makers to design Apple Watch bands with the launch of its Made for Apple Watch program.

Apple already sells its own interchangeable bands, but the options and price points are limited, and some of the straps only go well with (or are designed just for) specific Apple Watch models. With the watch's release buttons and lugs--the band attachments that Apple will soon open up to accessory makers--Apple Watch owners will be able to swap in bands for every occasion.

Like the MFi program that iPhone and iPad accessory makers join to get Apple approval for accessories that connect electronically to iPods, iPhones, iPads, and AirPlay, band-makers have to adhere to the guidelines Apple just published for watch bands. One big no-no: Developers can't put magnetic chargers in their accessories.

There are a few quality control requirements: Accessory companies have to put their bands through a 72-hour salt mist test to check for corrosion, test for slide-out force and pull force resistance, and make sure watch wearers can adjust their bands to ensure a snug fit so the heart rate sensor can accurately measure beats. They must also use materials that comply with Apple's environmental standards.

Apple constantly calls Apple Watch its most personal device ever, and bands will become a huge part of that customization. My white Sport band is great for running, but not the best for a night out in Manhattan. I expect designers like Kate Spade, Michael Kors, and Marc Jacobs, who already make iPhone cases, to jump on board with Apple Watch and make the device truly personal.

We've already seen a few early Apple Watch accessories, mainly charging stands from companies that want to be on the frontier alongside a new Apple device.

But I hesitate to shell out money for accessories that don't follow Apple's guidelines because they might not work as promised. Now that Apple has a program for watch accessories, licensed products will come with the assurances that Apple's backing brings.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Appleconsumer electronicsgadgetsApple watchMadeApple Watch accessories

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Caitlin McGarry

Macworld.com
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Bang and Olufsen Beosound Stage - Dolby Atmos Soundbar

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Sony WF-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

ASUS ROG, ACRONYM partner for Special Edition Zephyrus G14

Learn more >

Nakamichi Delta 100 3-Way Hi Fi Speaker System

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit for Nintendo Switch

Learn more >

Philips Sonicare Diamond Clean 9000 Toothbrush

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

SunnyBunny Snowflakes 20 LED Solar Powered Fairy String

Learn more >

Teac 7 inch Swivel Screen Portable DVD Player

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?