Ap­ple Watch buy­ers face lim­ited band se­lec­tion

You may have to buy your pre­ferred Ap­ple Watch band as a sep­a­rate ac­ces­sory,

iPad&iPhone user - - NEWS - writes Caitlin McGarry

When I de­cided to buy an Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 2, I knew ex­actly which model I wanted: rose gold with the pink and mid­night wo­ven ny­lon band. It was a com­bi­na­tion Ap­ple high­lighted on its web­site, but I wasn’t sure how many the store would keep in stock. Luck­ily, I snagged one of the few re­main­ing at Lon­don’s Covent Gar­den Ap­ple Store and wear it al­most ev­ery

day. Un­for­tu­nately, Ap­ple has de­cided to stop mak­ing its watches so cus­tom­iz­a­ble in the box.

The rose gold Ap­ple Watch Se­ries 2 with pink and mid­night wo­ven ny­lon band is no longer a com­bi­na­tion you can buy on Ap­ple.com/uk. In fact, you can’t choose a ny­lon band along­side your alu­minium or stain­less steel watch at all any­more. Your choices are a Sport band, a Mi­lanese loop, or an ul­tra-ex­pen­sive Her­mès leather band.

The chang­ing in­ven­tory could be due to lim­ited de­mand for spe­cific com­bi­na­tions of case and band. But one of the great things about the Ap­ple Watch is its per­son­al­iza­tion, and be­ing able to choose the ex­act fin­ish and band type right out of the box went a long way to­ward mak­ing that buy­ing de­ci­sion even more per­sonal.

Now you’re lim­ited to four Sport band colours – pink, blue, white and black – with your new 38- or 42mm Se­ries 2 watch, and just one Mi­lanese loop, the sil­ver op­tion. Sure, you can cus­tom­ize your stain­less steel Ap­ple Watch with an Her­mès leather band, but that’ll drive the price way up – the cheap­est Her­més-and-watch com­bi­na­tion is £1,299. Why not al­low peo­ple to choose a cheaper Ap­ple­made leather op­tion out of the box in­stead?

Ac­ces­sories have huge rev­enue-driv­ing po­ten­tial, and Ap­ple just re­leased new watch bands in a va­ri­ety of colours and styles that will tempt many watch own­ers to stock up (my­self in­cluded). That wide range of op­tions likely makes in­ven­tory man­age­ment tougher, so it makes sense that Ap­ple would sim­plify the com­bi­na­tions it stocks as it adds more bands as stand­alone ac­ces­sories. But it’s dis­ap­point­ing that new Ap­ple Watch buy­ers won’t be able to get that truly cus­tom­ized ex­pe­ri­ence. After all, that’s what the watch was sup­posed to be all about.

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