I mentioned in Poor Apple Watch that I had picked up a super cheap knockoff Space Black Milanese Loop from Amazon. I paid $18 for it; as I write this, it’s currently listed at $21. The official Apple version is $200.
There are a couple things that bother me about the Penom (knockoff) Loop. The color match against my Space Grey Apple Watch Sport is poor; this is most obvious in the lugs. There are a couple of spots where silver/unpainted stainless steel show through. It’s also a bit longer than I’d like, though I have small wrists. (I wear the smaller of the 42mm Sport Bands in the middle position).
Today, I went to the local Apple Store and tried on the official Milanese Loop. I was expecting to be blown away by the improved build quality; I expected it to be obvious which one was Apple and which one wasn’t.
Blindfolded, I doubt I could tell.
The color match on the Apple Milanese Loop is considerably better. Otherwise, the two felt about the same. The Apple one did feel marginally nicer, but not nice enough to justify spending 10x the money.
With this pleasant experience behind me, I’ve been eyeing up black link bracelet knockoffs on Amazon. I linked this one previously, but it requires a tool to add or remove links. Since posting Poor Apple Watch I’ve found another one that doesn’t require a tool to add or remove links, just like the official Apple Link Braclet. I’m seriously tempted to try it, but the $120 price tag is over my impulse purchase threshold.
Then again, that’s roughly a quarter of what Apple wants…