UAG Mobile Accessories: Rugged Apple Watch Bands and Z Fold 4 Case

UAG Mobile Accessories: Rugged Apple Watch Bands and Z Fold 4 Case


Ultra-rugged Apple Watch straps and a case for the Galaxy Z Fold 4

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

UAG has long been one of my favorite mobile accessory brands and continues to deliver functional gear that protects your expensive mobile technology. We spent a few weeks with a few Apple Watch Ultra bands and a protective case for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4.

The Apple Watch Ultra is an amazing smartwatch with a price tag of $799 while the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 starts at $1,799. Both of these investments deserve to be worn with quality straps and protected by sturdy cases. Urban Armor Gear offers several products to help you achieve these goals with reasonable prices and cool color options.

Also: I Put Apple Watch Ultra in a Tough Mudder: Here’s How It Held Up

Active watch strap

When I purchased my Apple Watch Ultra, strap options were limited in order to get a watch on my wrist as soon as possible. Since launch, I’ve been looking for watch straps that match the rugged styling and colors of the Apple Watch Ultra. The UAG Active Strap is available in Rust, Graphite and Foliage Green. With the safety orange highlights on the Watch Ultra, I chose the Rust color and was not disappointed.


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The Active Strap is available now for $69.95. Although it is advertised for the Apple Watch Ultra, it is also suitable for larger Apple Watch models. It clearly doesn’t go anywhere once you strap it onto your wrist.

The wristband is made with an elastic webbing material, so it stretches a bit to make it comfortable all day long and easy to fit on your wrist. This material also allows the band to dry out if it gets wet, and the stainless steel hardware means it won’t rust, even though that’s the name of the color I tested.


Apple Watch Ultra Safety Orange works well with this band

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Multiple rows of Velcro secure the strap to your wrist. The tension lock slider hardware is a bit bulky, but it’s also angled to fit your wrist nicely. The band is well constructed with tight stitching and superb fit and finish.

NATO strap ECO

The NATO ECO Strap is available for $49.95 in Foliage Green, Graphite, and Dark Earth. We tested the color Foliage Green.

The NATO ECO strap is made from RPET (recycled polyethylene terephthalate), so purchasing this strap helps keep plastic water bottles out of landfills and oceans. The nylon woven material is durable and sewn very well.


UAG branding is prominent on the strap

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

The strap hardware is recycled stainless steel with two additional passages on the strap to keep the bitter end secure against the strap when worn. I was surprised that this band ended up being my favorite and it worked great during exercise and during work.

The watch strap is designed for wrists 125-208mm in circumference with 11 openings to secure the latch to your wrist. The band is comfortable and lightweight, so it doesn’t add much to the overall Apple Watch Ultra. The strap also integrates quickly and easily into the Apple Watch pod system.


Great to see UAG using recycled plastics and stainless steel in their products

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

Civil strap

Not all straps are out of the park and I have to say the civilian strap was my least favorite of the three I tested. The band is very light and holds the Apple Watch Ultra in place well, but the soft silicone material collects pet hair, lint and dust to a very high degree and it’s hard to wipe it all off easily.

Personally, I’m also not a fan of the fold-over closure system, common to Apple Watch straps by default, and with the soft silicone material, it took a bit of effort to tuck the bitten end of the strap in. The civilian strap is available in mallard (blue) and black for $49.95.

The stainless steel hardware is excellent and the openings along the full length of the strap allow air to pass through the strap and make it adjustable for any size wrist. The silicone material is antimicrobial, it also helps keep things clean and fresh.

Also: Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 4 is a high-priced ticket to productivity heaven

Galaxy Z Fold 4 civilian case

Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 4 remains my favorite phone of 2022 and I appreciate covers that protect this expensive investment. The UAG Civilian Series case offers solid protection for the back, front, and even the hinge of the Z Fold 4 with a lightweight design and perfect fit. It has a material that makes it easy to hold with adhesive stripe stickers to hold the case to the phone.


The back is well protected

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While the front is well protected, the edge around the front screen is a little too high for me to reliably slide off the edges with my finger. I don’t use the cover screen much, so that’s not too much of an issue, but you should be aware that the front is a bit raised above the screen.


Raised edges help protect the front, but make it a bit difficult to slide off the edge

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

The back fits well and has openings for the camera, mics, speakers and USB-C port with a cool rear UAG logo. The volume button design is a bit unusual and not my favorite either. The Z Fold 4’s spine/hinge is somewhat protected by a lightweight material that covers the hinge when closed and slips behind the back panel when open.


There is some protection for the hinge when closed

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

The case is certified as a Made for Samsung product with MIL-STD 810G-516.6 drop test approval. Wireless charging and Samsung Pay also work great with the Z Fold 4 in the case. There is no storage option for the S Pen.

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