Huawei Watch Review – Best Smartwatch In 2015
Huawei – pronounced “wah-way” – is a Chinese company better known for its line of cheap Android smartphones rather than luxury products.
However, in the last year, Huawei launched several premium devices that changed the public’s idea of the brand. After using their first watch for a few weeks, we understand why the brand image changed so fast. In good.
Huawei announced its first Android Wear smartwatch in March. It took an extra six months for the watch to go on sale. The wait was worth it. The Huawei Watch is elegant and powerful. It is impressive.
Without further delay let’s start our review of the Huawei Watch.
Huawei Watch Review – Design And Specs
What a difference a year makes. The first smartwatches were big and ugly, with rubber straps and poor battery life. More than that, to see the time, you had to shake your wrist like a mad man. What a stupid idea.
A year later and the Huawei Watch is a different beast. Together, with the Apple Watch and the Samsung Gear S2, it proves that there is a bright future for the smartwatches.
Sparing no expense in the materials used, Huawei crafted a modern, refined timepiece, but also gave the owners the ability to customise it as they want, thanks to the changeable 18mm bands.
The overall design of the Huawei Watch is simple. Classic. It has a curved, 1.4 inch AMOLED display. No flat tyre like on the Moto 360 2. Also, the bezel and the lugs are small. It is so well made that it can pass as a classic watch. An attractive one.
More than that, the Huawei Watch has the highest resolution screen yet fitted to an Android Wear watch. The round display features a resolution of 400 x 400 and a pixel density of 286 pixels per inch. The screen is sharp, clear and easy to read.
On top of that, the display is protected by sapphire crystal, which is used in premium classic watches as well in the high-end versions of the Apple Watch.
No more worries about scratching your screen. The sapphire crystal is hard and more scratch resistant than, let’s say, the Gorilla Glass used in premium smartphones.
The power button is in the 2 o’clock position. The idea is not to rub into your wrist when bent, or at the gym.
The Huawei Watch comes with the IP67 rating. That means it can resist splashing and shower. You must be careful with the shower if you have gone for the leather strap of course. However, even if the strap is plastic, you should not go in the pool with it. And this applies to all Android Wear watches. No water.
Going back to the power button, if you are expecting a similar experience as using the Digital Crown on the Apple Watch, you might be disappointed.
The power button on the Huawei Watch is, well, just a button. While it is beautiful, it does not spin or have another usage.
You can press the button to light up the display or dim it, but that’s it. You can’t rotate to zoom or scroll through apps like on the Apple Watch.
On the back of the watch sits an optical heart-rate sensor, but it does not check your heart-rate nonstop, like the Moto 360 2 does, for example. It is an on-demand function. Still, you can check your HR from the watch menu or via an app.
There is also a gyroscope, an accelerometer, and a barometer. However, there’s no GPS like on the Sony Smartwatch 3. Saying that, the Huawei Watch is not an exercise watch. Still, you can track your basic activities like the steps, the calories burned and the walked distance.
Overall, even if this is the first smartwatch from Huawei, it does not feel like a new, unpolished gadget. Huawei has invested much time and effort into this beautiful design and you can tell straight away.
Huawei Watch Review – Performance And Software
Moving to the software part, the Huawei Watch runs the latest version of Android Wear. It is also compatible with both Android and iOS devices.
However, the iOS experience of the Android Wear is quite limited. You have access to core functions. But, you will not have the same options you’ll have with an Apple Watch when you pair it to an iPhone. Not even close.
If you are new to Android Wear, the Google OS is easy to use. With a swipe down you can access the quick settings and with a swipe from right to left you’ll have access to the apps, the contacts and the voice controls. You can also just lift your wrist and speak your command if you prefer.
Speaking of apps, the Android Wear comes pre-installed with the following apps:
- Google Search
- Find my phone
- Google Fit
- Google Maps
- Play Music
In addition to the pre-installed Android Wear apps, Huawei also included two fitness-tracking apps.
The “Daily Tracking App” does what it says on the package. It tracks steps, climbed stairs and the consumed calories. The app is well designed and adds floors count to the stats tracked by Google’s built-in Fit app.
The second one is the Huawei’s Fitness Tracking App. You just have to hit start, set a goal of calories or time and go for a workout. That’s it.
It works well as a basic workout tracker but lacks the functionalities and the options available in third-party apps like Strava or Runkeeper.
Huawei Watch Review – Battery Life And Price
The Huawei Watch features a 300-mAh battery and is supposed to last up to two days. In the first week of usage, it met that target.
However, in time, the watch clocked about a day to a day and a half of use before running out of battery. Most time I had the smartwatch charging over night. Took it for a spin at 6 a.m. every morning and put it back to charge in the evening, around 11 p.m. As most of us do.
Price wise, the regular version of Huawei Watch with a leather band costs $329 on Amazon. It is the same price as the Samsung Gear S2 Classic and the Apple Watch Sport.
Similar Read: Top 9 New Designer Watch Faces For Android Wear
If you want a Huawei Watch with a metal band, the price goes up to $360. For the black version, you’ll pay $450, and if you like the rose gold as I do, you’ll have to pay the premium price of $700.
Make that $800 for the one with a metal link strap, instead of the leather strap.
Huawei Watch Review – Verdict
The Huawei Watch is the best-looking smartwatch to date. No doubt about it. The rose gold one was called the Rolex of smartwatches, for good reason. But it is also one of the most expensive smartwatches you can buy.
Huawei does an excellent job with the design of their watch. We also feel that the $350 price tag is deserved.
But, this watch does not have the NFC for mobile payments. There is no GPS for maps. More than that, except the big resolution display and the sapphire crystal addition, you can say that this watch is no different than last year’s smartwatches.
That said, until Motorola and the other manufacturers release out new smartwatches with even better designs and spec sheets, the Huawei Watch is the best Android Wear smartwatch you can buy at the moment.
Huawei Watch Review – Gallery
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