Apple this week unveiled the new Apple Watch Series 9, and although it has kept the same design as the previous generation, the company has announced a variety of new watch bands – including the new FineWoven bands that replace the leather ones. Hermès has made a commitment to Apple to create more environmentally friendly bands, but it turns out that the brand will continue to sell Apple Watches with leather bands.
Apple Watch Series 9 doesn’t come with leather bands, unless you buy one from Hermès
As noted by Parker Ortolani, Hermès not only continues to sell leather bands for the Apple Watch, but has also quietly launched new editions of the Apple Watch Series 9 bundled with leather bands on its website. There are many combinations available of stainless steel Series 9 models signed by Hermès.
Some of the leather bands already existed before, but Ortolani also noted that some of the leather bands for the Apple Watch are brand new, and Hermès will also sell them bundled with the new Series 9.
Of course, Apple can’t stop Hermès from making leather bands on its own. However, the fact that there are new Apple Watch Series 9 models with leather bands being shipped by Hermès can be seen as a huge controversy, since Apple dedicated an entire section of Tuesday’s event to saying that it will no longer use leather in its products.
To further reduce impact on the planet, Apple is ending the use of leather across all of its product lines, including iPhone accessories and Apple Watch bands. The company will replace leather with a new textile called FineWoven, an elegant and durable twill made from 68 percent post-consumer recycled content.
Apple and Hermès controversies
This is not the first time that the Apple Watch Hermès has been under fire. Back in 2020, Apple announced that it would no longer include a power adapter in the Apple Watch box. However, Apple Watch Hermès models were still shipped with a 5W adapter. After a bad reaction on the web, Apple decided to remove the adapter included with the Hermès models.
It’s unclear at this point whether the Apple Watch Series 9 models with leather bands being sold by Hermès are just regular models wrapped with a different band, or whether they’re still being shipped in collaboration with Apple.