Hands-On With Urban Armor Gear (UAG)’s New Apple Watch Straps

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Through multiple generations of iPhones, I’ve used cases from Urban Armor Gear (UAG) during outdoor activities: camping, hiking, and that sort of thing. I like the UAG cases because they offer a nice combination of protection, grip, and high tech styling. With my iPhone 7 Plus, it was a UAG Monarch case, and with my current iPhone XS Max, I’ve been using UAG’s Pathfinder—in a very cool Slate blue color. Now the company is expanding to the Apple Watch with replacement bands (which UAG calls Apple Watch Straps).

UAG Apple Watch Strap
UAG’s new Leather Apple Watch Strap and the UAG Pathfinder iPhone case. (Photo by Brad Moon)

The company sent me a pair of its new Apple Watch Straps to try out. Like its smartphone cases, the emphasis is on security and rugged durability. With the Apple Watch, that means making sure the watch remains safely on your wrist.

That may sound like a non-issue, but during vigorous activity, it’s possible for the smartwatch to fly off. It’s happened—twice!—to one of my kids in gym class. Having your Apple Watch fly off your wrist can end in an expensive disaster. Even a best-case scenario is liable to be a scratched or scuffed display. I’ve had one of those, and it significantly diminishes the appeal of the device…

UAG Apple Watch Strap
Leather and Active Apple Watch Straps from UAG. (Photo by Brad Moon)

I was sent a pair of Apple Watch Straps to try out. The $69.95 Leather Watch Strap is available in brown or black. The $59.95 Active Watch Strap comes in black, orange, or a gray camo pattern. The hardware on both bands appears solid and durable; UAG says it’s custom-made from stainless steel. The Leather version seems traditional in appearance, but look closely and there’s a snap fastener at the end of the strap. This secures the band so it can’t work its way free of the buckle. The Active Strap is a 1-1/4 inch wide nylon weave band with “hook and loop” (velcro to you and me) running its length. Once fastened to your wrist, your Apple Watch isn’t going anywhere with this one…

And just like the company’s smartphone cases, the UAG Apple Watch Straps also add a nice flash of style. I was particularly fond of the brown Leather version.

If you’re an Apple Watch owner and you want to make sure your smartwatch remains securely on your wrist during a workout—or you just want to check out compelling alternatives to Apple’s own replacement Bands—make sure to check out the Apple Watch Straps from UAG.

Disclosure: UAG provided Apple Watch Straps for evaluation but had no input into this review.

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