Apple Watch Band Swap Sites Rise in Popularity as 'BandSwapper' Pivots

by

Just a few weeks after the Apple Watch launched to the public on April 24, a handful of start-up websites have begun Apple Watch band exchange programs (via Wired). These sites allow customers a range of services, from the ability to trade in their unwanted band for money to go towards a higher-priced model, to swapping out full bands for different colors in the same style.

That's the basis of iBandSwap, a new band exchange website that creator Alistair Barclay says around 530 users have signed up for, with approximately 148 "matches", or band swaps, taking place so far. iBandSwap not only allows for full band trades, but partial ones as well, with Barclay mentioning Black/White and Pink/Blue are the first and second-most popular swap configurations on the site respectively.

iBandSwap
Interestingly, the site also allows for swapping individual links from the stainless steel Link Bracelet watch band. One user, for example, found he needed more links than Apple provided due to his large wrist, so on iBandSwap he's attempting to put up some of his extraneous bands to receive extra links from someone using a Link Bracelet with a smaller wrist.

All of these interactions happen independently from any input with the actual website, with both parties receiving one another's contact information upon a successful match, and any shipping process remains delegated to the users. No money is exchanged in the process.

“It’s a small risk,” Barclay says, “and I like to think that most people who are buying a Watch are good people and have no interest in duping someone, as there isn’t really any money involved.”

iBandSwap isn't alone in its Apple Watch band-swapping cause, with sites like StrapSwap and the France-based Band-Band providing similar swap meets and basic e-commerce band selling services to customers tired of their original strap. All of these sites were faced with the initial hurdle that was Apple's confusing description over exactly how many bands came with Apple Watch Sport models, but iBandSwap, StrapSwap, and Band-Band have kept chugging along and remained nearly identical in structure as initially planned.

BandSwapper, however, has taken a different approach as its Apple Watch Sport-focused swap site was hit hardest of all by the three-band interchangeability confirmed by Apple in the days leading up to the Watch launch. According to the team, they always had a back-up idea for BandSwapper and have decided to pivot to that plan B entirely. It's now called WatchDots, and allows customers to place small stickers on the top of the Digital Crown and contacts buttons, aiming to provide lower-end Watch models with a similar look to the Edition line of color-matched buttons.

WatchDots

Apple Watch Edition (left) and Apple Watch Sport with WatchDots (right)

“On the high-end gold model, the digital crown is color-matched to your band,” explains co-founder Adam Hoyle. “The Sport doesn’t have this, it’s just all aluminum.” Pricing hasn’t been officially announced yet, but WatchDots will be under $10.

WatchDots hasn't officially launched yet, but those interested can enter their email address on the official website for updates and a 25% off promo code on their first order. These sites are no doubt just the first wave of band swapping and selling services provided online, with new experiences to launch - and currently established ones to rise in popularity - as more Apple Watch units and bands become more widely available in the coming weeks.

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 6
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Buy Now)

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
71 months ago
watch dot

There is no way I could put a watch dot on perfectly centered, and that would drive me crazy every time I looked at it.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
71 months ago
Boy, I'd love to get the Edition.... just to put some stickers on it!!!!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
71 months ago
Crown dot could be a cool idea, as long as they don't fall off easily.

The button sticker looks pretty bad though. Best to leave that as all metal.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
71 months ago

There is no way I could put a watch dot on perfectly centered, and that would drive me crazy every time I looked at it.


Your comment alone is driving me crazy.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

New Photos Offer Better Look at iPhone 12 Color Options

Tuesday October 20, 2020 2:34 am PDT by
As we wait for the iPhone 12 review embargo to lift later today, more pictures are circulating of the devices in real-world lighting conditions, providing a better look at the different colors available. Leaker DuanRui has shared images on Twitter of the iPhone 12 in white, black, blue, green, and (PRODUCT)RED. The black and white colors are similar to the iPhone 11 colors, but the other...

iPhone 12 Pro in Graphite and iPhone 12 in Blue Shown Off in Unboxing Videos

Monday October 19, 2020 8:20 am PDT by
While the iPhone 12 Pro does not launch until Friday, we now have an early unboxing video of the device courtesy of Twitter account DuanRui, providing a closer look at the shiny new flat-edge design and sleek Graphite color option. Ben Geskin re-uploaded the unboxing video to YouTube, which we've embedded below: Geskin has also uploaded an unboxing video of the iPhone 12 in Blue: ...

Apple Releases iPadOS and iOS 14.1 With Multiple Bug Fixes Ahead of iPhone 12 Launch

Tuesday October 20, 2020 10:06 am PDT by
Apple today released iOS and iPadOS 14.1, the first major updates to the iOS and iPadOS 14 operating system updates that were released in September. iOS and iPadOS 14.1 come a week after Apple released the golden master versions of the updates to developers. The iOS 14.1 update can be downloaded for free and it is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in the Settings app. To access...

Watch: iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro Unboxing Videos and First Impressions

Tuesday October 20, 2020 6:05 am PDT by
Apple's embargo has lifted for iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro reviews. In addition to our detailed review roundups for each device, we've rounded up over a dozen unboxing videos and first impressions below. iPhone 12 in Blue on left and iPhone 12 Pro in Pacific Blue on right via Engadget Key new features of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro include a flat-edge design, 5G support, a much faster A14 ...

Gold Version of iPhone 12 Pro Apparently Has a More Fingerprint Resistant Stainless Steel Frame

Tuesday October 20, 2020 11:56 am PDT by
iPhone 12 Pro reviews hit the web today, and one of the more interesting tidbits came from TechCrunch's Matthew Panzarino, who revealed that the Gold version of the device apparently has a more fingerprint resistant coating applied to the stainless steel frame. From his review:Most of the iPhone 12 Pro finishes still use a physical vapor deposition process for edge coating. But the new gold...

Photographer Austin Mann Tests the iPhone 12 Pro's Camera

Wednesday October 21, 2020 4:14 am PDT by
Travel photographer Austin Mann usually performs an in-depth review of new iPhone models to test their camera performance in real-world scenarios. To test Apple's new iPhone 12 Pro, Mann traveled to Glacier National Park, Montana. Mann focused on some of the biggest camera upgrades with the iPhone 12 Pro, including the upgraded Wide lens, Ultra Wide Night mode, and LiDAR autofocus, across a...

iPhone 12 Pro Max Has Smaller 3,687 mAh Battery According to Regulatory Filing

Tuesday October 20, 2020 8:48 pm PDT by
Apple's new iPhone 12 Pro Max is equipped with a 3,687 mAh battery, which is around 7% less capacity than the 3,969 mAh battery in the iPhone 11 Pro Max, according to a regulatory filing published by TENAA, the Chinese equivalent of the FCC. The regulatory filing, spotted by MacRumors, also lists the iPhone 12 Pro Max with 6GB of RAM as seen in benchmark results last week. Apple has filed ...

5G Drains iPhone 12 Battery 20% Faster Than 4G in Benchmark

Wednesday October 21, 2020 3:17 am PDT by
After the first reviews for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro emerged yesterday, a new report by Tom's Guide reveals the extent of battery life reductions when using 5G. The report outlines a test wherein the iPhone surfs the web continuously at 150 nits of screen brightness, launching a new site every 30 seconds until the battery drains. Interestingly, the test was run on an iPhone 12 and...

Hands-On With Apple's iPhone 12 and 12 Pro MagSafe Cases

Tuesday October 20, 2020 1:33 pm PDT by
Apple's iPhone 12 and 12 Pro are launching this Friday, and ahead of that release date, Apple is shipping out various accessories like the MagSafe charger and MagSafe cases. Yesterday we took a look at the MagSafe charger, and today our MagSafe case came in the mail, so we thought we'd take another look at the charger to see how it works with the case and just how strong the case magnets are. S ...

Reliable Leaker Suggests AirTags 'Coming Soon' in Two Different Sizes

Tuesday October 20, 2020 1:53 am PDT by
Apple's rumored AirTags Bluetooth tracking devices could launch imminently and will be available in two size options, based on new tweets from cryptic-but-reliable leaker L0vetodream. In typical enigmatic style, the leaker first tweeted this morning that a "big one" and a "small one" are "coming soon," but withheld what they were referring to. However that was followed an hour later with the ...