KEY POINTS

  • Apple released new watch bands alongside the new Apple Watch models
  • The new Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop do not have buckles or clasps
  • Some Apple Watch owners said the watch bands they received were ill-fitting and needed to be returned or replaced

Several Apple Watch users have complained that the new watch bands for the device, called the Solo Loop and the Braided Solo Loop, feel loose and uncomfortable even after they followed Apple's instructions to get the right size.

For those who don't know, the new Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop do not have buckles or clasps unlike other Apple Watch bands. These are made using stretchable material and are uniquely designed to fasten the device to the user's wrist. The design, however, requires users to first measure their wrists in order to get the correct band size.

Apple published a downloadable guide that will help users measure their wrist size to determine which Loop size they need to get. The guide, in PDF, includes a measuring tool that needs to be cut out and wrapped around the user's wrist. Users will then be able to see what the appropriate band size will be.

The users complained via the MacRumors forums that even after they followed Apple's instructions on determining the correct Solo Loop or Braided Solo Loop size, the ones they actually received were larger than expected and needed to be returned or replaced.

Some of them noted that the bands that were sent to them were significantly smaller compared to the size determined using the guide. Others pointed out how a popular reviewer on YouTube, iJustine, measured her wrist and determined it as a size 5 but discovered that a size 2 would actually be the right fit.

Several Apple Watch buyers found that they needed to get at least one size smaller than the one they ordered and eventually received. But when they needed to have the bands replaced, that's when another problem appeared: the return or replacement procedure.

Return/Replacement Woes

According to some users, Apple will require buyers to return the Apple Watch along with the Solo Loop or Braided Solo Loop that needs to be replaced. This is because it is considered to be a “set.”

“I assumed if you ordered the incorrect size, you could keep the watch and just return/exchange the band. But Apple support through chat said you have to return the watch and the band,” one Apple Watch owner who spoke to Apple support wrote on the MacRumors forums. “That's so wasteful. And frustrating. I'm selling my S4 watch and the buyer will have to keep waiting until it's all sorted out.”

Aside from having to return the entire Watch, Apple will also require consumers to wait a bit longer before being able to replace the bands due to limited supply. Those who return the Watch now will need to wait until at least October or late November in order for the bands to be replaced.

Apple_delivers-apple-watch-series-6_09152020 The new Apple Watch Series 6 with Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop. Photo: Apple