As a follow-up on my comment on third-party knockoff Leather Loop in the Reddit thread, that offers the 38mm version that Apple does not, I am sharing with you some thoughts based on my experience and research. (Last update: April 2017)
The price of the knockoff bands is ranging from $20 to $50 which is way cheaper than the genuine bands. After a month’s wait, the Chinese suppliers finally shipped out but here are the reasons that I cancelled my order after all.
Firstly, the seller had terrible customer service and never kept their promise; delayed my shipment and cheated me with numerous excuses about manufacture delays, quality issues and missing courier pickup schedules. I had to give up but file a dispute to get some monetary remedies.
Secondly, and more importantly, is the inconsistent quality and durability of the band due to manufacturing faults and lack of quality control. I believe what you can get from eBay, Amazon or Aliexpress should all come from China. So the below facts should hold and here are quite a few examples that I found from the unhappy customers.
Leather on the side peeled off after a few days usage and the glue could not hold the leather with the metal adapters:
The cutting near the adapter looks bad, not as smooth and curved as the genuine bands:
Rough edges that the leather is not well cut and trimmed (left), inconsistent or washed out marking (middle) and incorrect color reproduction (right).
Some users also complained that the magnet is not strong enough to hold the band which led to danger of dropping the watch from the wrist.
Latest reports in 2017 were that either it is a bit loose at the adapter that makes the band insecure on the watch, or the leather is too thick and the band got stuck when sliding into the watch (right-most picture of the red band).
So these are something you should be aware of before getting a third-party Leather Loop. Hope this post will help you out in making a good decision.