HMRC will take a bite out of Apple for import of watch straps

Apple Watch

Apple has lost its appeal to have the straps of its smartwatches described as an integral part of an Apple Watch.

The tech giant has been arguing in a tax tribunal in London that the straps are part of the technology, but a ruling handed down yesterday said the straps are “pieces of plastic” and an “accessory”.

That matters, because electronics imported into the UK are generally not hit with import duties, but less technical items have no such exemption.

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Apple’s straps, according to analysis by The Telegraph, could be hit with a 6.5% duty on each Apple Watch Strap, currently retailing at £49 for a plastic sports band, or up to £449 for a stainless steel link bracelet.

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