When Apple announced the Apple Watch at its keynote in March, it had a very warm welcome. It wasn’t just about the technology though, as it’s the first Apple product that really allows you to pick and choose exactly what your device will look like with a multitude of straps available. They ranged from cheap Sports Bands to the rather expensive Link Bracelet, but when prospective buyers saw the prices, many changed their minds.
In this article, we’re going to show you how to make your Apple Watch compatible with any standard 20mm watchstrap with a £15 accessory that you can buy right now.
How to use any strap with the Apple Watch: official Apple Watch straps
There are a variety of official Apple Watch straps available directly from Apple, ranging from the fluoroelastomer Sports Band to the Link Bracelet. The issue isn’t the design or the material used, but instead the price – Sports bands cost £39 each, which is reasonable, but from there the price jumps up to £129 for a Milanese Loop, Classic Buckle or Leather Loop strap.
It doesn’t stop there either; the Modern Buckle will set you back £209, and the Link Bracelet costs more than the entry-level Apple Watch Sport, at an eye-watering £379.
But why are they so expensive? Sure, they look beautiful and were designed with the Apple Watch in mind, but many people won’t be able to justify spending £299 on an Apple Watch Sport and a further £209 on a modern buckle strap. This is especially true when you consider you can get a standard 20mm watchstrap for a few pounds online.
Don’t worry; there are ways around this issue. Accessory makers have started to manufacture Apple Watch strap adapters designed to make any 20mm watchstrap compatible with your Apple Watch, costing as little as £15. This allows you to use a number of different watchstraps with your Apple Watch without having to fork out hundreds of pounds for them.
See also: Apple Watch 2 rumours
How to use any strap with the Apple Watch
Step 1: Buy a watchstrap. The good news is that the majority of Apple Watch strap adapters can fit any 22mm watchstrap, giving you an almost endless variety of straps for your Watch. These can be picked up from the High Street or via Amazon, with a stainless steel Milanese mesh strap costing only £28 compared to the £129 Apple variation.
Step 2: Using the provided screwdriver, unscrew the two screws from each of the adapters. Make sure to keep the screws safe by putting them on a plate or into a cup, as they’re very small.
Step 3: Separate the curved bar from the main body of the adapter and pull apart. Thread the two parts of the bar through either side of the loop of your 22mm watchstrap and reconnect.
Step 4: Carefully align the bar (with the strap attached) to the main body of the Apple Watch adapter. Once aligned, screw the screws back into the holes at either side to reconnect the bar and secure the band into place.
This is what the adapter looks like when attached to the Apple Watch without a strap
Step 5: Repeat the process for the other strap adapter and re-attach the straps to your Apple Watch.
Viola! You’ve now got a brand new strap for your Apple Watch, at a fraction of the cost of an official Apple strap.